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Where to Get the Best Burger in Chicago

According to


Chicago’s Best Burgers

One patty, two patties, big patty, MEAT. These are our favorite burgers in Chicago. Some are dressed up with fancy toppings, some survive with just a side of fries, all are tasty. Don’t just eat one.

The Kuma Burger. Photo Credit: roboppy

Duh. Let’s move on. —Samantha Abernethy
Kuma’s Corner is at 2900 W. Belmont Ave., and Kuma’s Too is at 666 W. Diversey St.

Yes, Au Cheval’s burger gets a ton of hype, but it’s completely justified. The single takes two griddled prime beef patties (the double takes three) and grills them to medium. Then the patties are placed on a soft, toasted bun and topped with cheese, dijonnaise, and pickles. It’s simple, it’s delicious, and since it’ll set you back just $9.95, add on the mornay sauce- and egg-topped frites as a side. —Amy Cavanaugh
Au Cheval is at 800 W. Randolph St.

Nightwood’s burger. Photo Credit: Chuck Sudo

Here’s what I wrote about Nightwood’s burger in April 2011: “Nightwood’s burger is a subtle masterpiece, with touches like garlic aioli with a touch of concentrated tomato as their special sauce, served on a ciabatta roll with just the right amount of crusty texture on the outside, but soft enough inside to handle the ground beef from Slagel Farms, given extra flavor from homemade Worcestershire sauce. Fresh greens top this burger like a crown.” They’ve recently changed the size of the patty from a large to a double, similar to Au Cheval, and they’ve added an onion ring on top of the bun. It still remains one of my favorites in Chicago and, cooked on the Pilsen restaurant’s wood-fired grill, retains a flavor and juiciness unparalleled anywhere else. —Chuck Sudo
Nightwood is at 2119 S. Halsted Street.BAD APPLE
Most people who’ve wandered into the Bad Apple know the name is actually short for Badass Burgers, Apple or No Apple. Served with homemade ketchup and hand-cut fries, from truffle to curry to minced garlic, Bad Apple’s extensive burger selection is arguably the best you’ll find on the north side. Our personal favorite? The Edmund Fig-Gerald, topped with fig and bacon relish as well as a generous dollop of goat cheese and smoked onions. We’ve also lapped up Elvis’ Last Supper, festooned with bacon and peanut butter, and loved it something tender. The King went out on a high note. —Melissa Wiley
Bad Apple is at 4300 N. Lincoln Ave.

The Big DMK Burger. Photo Credit: Clint McMahon

Where can you get an amazing, grass-fed burger, the best milkshake in Chicago, fried pickles and a great shot of bourbon? The only answer to this question: DMK Burger Bar in Lakeview. Their #1 burger, with aged cheddar, smoked bacon, charred balsamic red onions and barbecue sauce, is my favorite burger in the world, and their peanut butter shake, laced with swirls of chocolate, is the reason that my blood sugar is often too high on Saturday afternoons. My tip? It’s usually easy to get in early for lunch on weekends. Claim the table, order all the different french fries and savor a great day. —Anthony Todd
DMK Burger Bar is at 2954 North Sheffield Ave.

Mindy Segal is one of the best pastry chefs in the universe, but she’ll go to Hell and back touting the praises of the burger at her restaurant, Hot Chocolate. The menu and interior at Segal’s Wicker Park hotspot have changed over the years, but the burger remains untouched since the days when Mark Steuer manned the kitchen. Made with two cuts of Heartland Meats Piedmontese beef ground in house, Hot Chocolate serves one of the leaner yet most flavorful burgers in town. Get it topped with an egg and pray you don’t have Segal looking over your shoulder asking, “So, whaddya think? Best Goddamn burger in Chicago, huh?” —Chuck Sudo
Hot Chocolate is at 1747 N. Damen Ave.


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Tim Padavic