Las Vegas is the place to be if you enjoy exquisite food prepared by some of the best chefs in the world. Unfortunately, it’s also becoming the place to go if you want to pay a significant amount for some of the best food prepared by some of the best chefs in the world.
Gone are the days when casinos would use food as a loss leader to get you in the door and to keep you there. Cheap prime rib, nearly-free shrimp cocktails, $1.99 steak and eggs, etc. are mostly gone and replaced by Hell’s Kitchens replicas and Japanese-Peruvian cuisine.
Make no mistake about it. There’s a place for the Beef Wellington at Hell’s Kitchen and sushi at Nobu, but there has to be some money for gambling left over after dinner. Therefore, may I recommend a humble burger? Sure, some of these burgers are “Vegas-priced” but they’re good, they’re filling, and they don’t end up costing you an entire bankroll for one meal.
So, next time you visit Las Vegas, check out one of these delicious burger joints to see what it’s all about!
10 – In-N-Out Burger
The Southern half of the United States just let out a collective gasp because I just recommended In-N-Out instead of Whataburger. Also, the half of the gourmands out there offended to see a chain place also just gasped.
If you’ve not been, get everything “animal style” because you need more fat, salt, and sugar with your burgers (trust me, it’s worth it).
Whatever you do, though, don’t turn your nose up at In-N-Out Burger just because it’s a chain. This place is just that good. Plus, the closest Whataburger is in Arizona, so it’s not like the Whataburger fans have much of a choice.
9 – Shake Shack
Well, they do have some choice. They can go to Shake Shack. Yes, it’s another chain place, but it’s also a really, really good burger chain. Shake Shack occupies a strange place between fancy and not-fancy in so far as their burgers tend to have few frills while their shakes are as luxuriant as one could hope for.
Still, that makes Shake Shack really good on your wallet because there’s no temptation to get the foie gras burger or the lobster burger or the solid gold foil burger. Nope. Just get a burger, add cheese if you are feeling worldly and go to town.
8 – Black Tap
Black Tap is a New York transplant and, interestingly enough, one of the more successful restaurants to move across the country and call Sin City home. Black Tap features hamburger portions that are the size of your head. Seriously, some of their burgers look too large to fit into a human mouth for even a bite. Not that anyone is complaining.
The real star of Black Tap, though, are the CrazyShakes. They’re huge milkshakes full of ingredients like fruity pebbles, cake batter, chocolate gems, churros, vanilla cookies, cotton candy, and more. They’re also stacked high with cookies, cake slices, whipped cream, caramel, and other delectable ingredients. So, come for the burgers, but stay for dessert and you won’t be sorry!
7 – Fukuburger
Don’t think too hard on how to pronounce “fuku.” It’s probably not what you think. Do think very hard on how often you want to go to Fukuburger (in one of their two locations or their food truck).
Once there, you have a choice of five burgers or one chicken katsu sandwich, each of which has some ingredients you will want to try like Fuku sauce, wasabi mayo, or crack sauce. They also offer either Fuku fries (with togarashi garlic or poutine-like jazz fries with gravy and more of that delicious crack sauce). You can also have a beef rice bowl or a hot dog topped with kimchi and other ingredients.
In the end, Fukuburger doesn’t take itself seriously, but they do take their burgers very seriously which is why they are constantly named as one of the best burgers in the city.
6 – Heart Attack Grill
Finding a place for the Heart Attack Grill is tough. On one hand, their burgers are amazing and are ordered not in the number of patties, but in the number of heart bypasses you want. (The current exchange rate is one patty equals one bypass. The most you can get is the octuple bypass, by the way.) This diner-style eatery also has cocktails, shakes, onion rings, and “flatliner fries.”
On the other hand, Heart Attack Grill doesn’t shy away from the fact that their greasy food can kill people. Their restaurant has a hospital theme, they have the cremated remains of one of their customers in their restaurant, and they give anyone over 350 pounds the option to eat free. Even worse, according to Time, two of their spokespeople have died.
Yes, we get that hamburgers aren’t health food, and some will love the morbid theme. That’s why this burger is here even if I find the whole thing a bit ominous.
5 – Beers and Bets
Found at the Sahara Las Vegas, Beers and Bets is the first, though certainly not the last, upscale burger joint on the list. Beers and Bets, despite its sportsbook-like name, is one of the classier burger places in Las Vegas. Sure, it does offer the William Hill Sports Book so that you can bet and the food sounds like it’s straight out of a local bar. Still, Beers and Bets wraps everything up in unmistakable luxury.
The burgers run the gamut from basic bacon cheeseburgers to the “Da Kine,” a Hawaiian-inspired burger, to the “Big Mess,” filled with maitake mushrooms and gruyere. There are also fancier sandwiches like a crispy chicken saltimbooca or Porchetta grilled cheese, appetizers like the ahi poke nachos or duck fat cauliflower, and five different kinds of fries.
In other words, Beers and Bets does burgers right. They also look really fancy doing it.
4 – The Buffet at Wynn
It’s Las Vegas. We had to include one buffet somewhere on the list and it just so happened that the buffet burger we liked best is at the Wynn. This should come as no surprise as the Wynn’s buffet has been awarded all the way around. It’s just nice to know that they have also mastered the art of the burger, too.
3 – Gordon Ramsay Burger
Now, we’re getting back into the luxury side of Las Vegas hamburgers. Reasonably enough, no list of Vegas burgers would be complete without the wildly inventive Gordon Ramsay burger at Planet Hollywood.
The end result is a burger that’s a little less fancy than some places, but in that (relative) simplicity comes perfection you don’t get anywhere else (take that, Whataburger fans). Even better, Gordon Ramsay offers regular fries or sweet potato fries and unique milkshakes mixed with custard.
Oh, and if you go, try the Hell’s Kitchen burger, named after famed show Hell’s Kitchen.
2 – Hell’s Kitchen
Given that it has a burger named after it, it should be no surprise that Hell’s Kitchen should appear on this list. Though, technically they don’t offer the Hell’s Kitchen burger, just a burger at Hell’s Kitchen. Confused? Good.
In some ways, it’s kind of a shame to order a burger at this restaurant that’s made to look like the kitchen from the television program. On the other hand, the relatively simple burger is just so good. And sometimes, it’s hard to argue with a good burger.
1 – Burger Bar Las Vegas
With all apologies to Gordon Ramsay, Hubert Keller’s Burger Bar takes the prize as the most luxuriant, delicious burger spot in the entire city of Las Vegas. Keller is an world-renowned chef, classically trained in French techniques. And he decided the natural outcome of all his talent was to serve hot wings, French fries, and hamburgers.
And I’m so glad he did. I don’t always want an Australian lamb burger with Greek seasonings, Blank Angus on a baguette, etc., but when I do, I want Burger Bar. I want Burger Bar fat fries and truffle mayo and housemade mustard. It’s all very good food and, at the end of the day, it’s not an expensive meal.
It’s also conveniently located inside the Mandalay Bay, so I enjoy grabbing a burger there after I spend some time gambling.
Maybe one day, Las Vegas will no longer be known for gambling, but for burgers. (That day is not today.) Still, there are a lot of really exquisite burger places that one can choose from when in Sin City, and there are more opening all the time.
Still, we recommend starting with the list. Whether you need something fast from In-N-Out Burger or a sit down, gourmet burger experience, Las Vegas has the burger for you. The hardest part will be figuring out where to go!