26 amazing burgers by Minnesota chefs

When some of the metro’s best chefs put their minds to making a burger, the results are nothing short of amazing.

New or updated entries among these 26 restaurants are marked with asterisks.

If you have other suggestions, please email them to us at eat@pioneerpress.com.

Other categories from our 2023 guide:

Burgers for beer (and cocktail) hounds
‘Cheffy’ burgers
Cult burgers
Destination burgers
Dive bar burgers
Neighborhood burgers

1. * Juche

When I say that a Korean restaurant has one of my favorite new burgers of the year, I’m often met with raised eyebrows, but this is a hill I’m willing to die upon. Chef Chris Her and owner Eddie Wu have made some burger magic in this dark, comfortable space. The bulgogi burger has a very slight Korean flavor — what mostly comes through is the delicious Peterson beef, topped simply with American cheese, aioli, romaine and caramelized onion and nestled into a squishy brioche bun. The spicy Korean burger is for the more adventurous among us, but the spicy pickled slaw on top is super addictive. It’s paired with tangy cheddar and spicy mayo and is somehow still not overly spicy. My teen boy — who has been making his own list of favorites this year — even loved it. The fries here, hand cut and fried until deep golden brown, are exceptional, and you should definitely ask for the Korean hot sauce for dipping them in.

Juche: 1124 Payne Ave., St. Paul; 612-490-3380; juchestpaul.com

The bulgogi burger at Juche in St. Paul.

2. * Chloe by Vincent

Chef Vincent Francoual’s Vincent Burger, a standout on the menu of his now-closed Vincent A Restaurant (that’s a lot of Vincent!), is back. Francoual’s new downtown Minneapolis restaurant, Chloe, offers his famed Juicy Lucy spin-off, stuffed with braised short rib and smoked gouda. The burger, first of all, is absolutely massive. The short rib inside is so flavorful and keeps the burger from drying out, and the smoked gouda is the perfect cheese choice. People have been waiting years for this burger, and Francoual told us that bringing it back makes him “excited like a little kid!” He has mixed feelings on burgers in general, he said cheekily, but, “this burger with Coca-Cola? The best hangover food.”

Chloe by Vincent: 700 3rd St. S., Minneapolis; 612-200-8041; chloebyvincent.com

The Vincent Burger at Chloe in Minneapolis. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

3. * Wrestaurant at the Palace

This new restaurant next to the Palace Theatre is a real boon to downtown. The Detroit-style pizza is great — but so is the burger! With its thin patties, American cheese, crisp iceberg and a lovely sauce, it’s not exactly reinventing the wheel, but it’s a solid burger. When we ordered it, the bun was essentially four slider buns, still attached, which made it really easy for us to cut it into fours and share, because there was no way we weren’t ordering a pizza, too. Comes with curly fries, which is a rarity outside of drive-throughs in these parts.

Wrestaurant at the Palace: 33 W. Seventh Place, St. Paul; 952-600-5611; wrestaurantatthepalace.com

The burger at Wrestaurant at the Palace in downtown St. Paul. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

4. * Apostle Supper Club

If you’re looking for a burger with a side of mid-century-modern/tiki atmosphere, the Apostle is your spot. Theirs is a behemoth of a double smashie, properly seasoned, extremely juicy and classically topped with American, shredded lettuce, pickle, caramelized onion and your typical burger sauce on a sesame bun. The plank-like crinkle fries are tasty, too. We are not fans of their tiki drinks (too sweet, not enough fresh-squeezed juice), but they do make a mean martini, which honestly pairs pretty well with this burger.

Apostle Supper Club: 253 W. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul; apostlesupperclub.com

The burger at Apostle Supper Club in St. Paul. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

5. * Blondette

The award for prettiest surroundings in which to eat a burger definitely goes to Blondette, the retractable-roof French-bistro dining experience at the Rand Tower Hotel in downtown Minneapolis. This thick patty of waygu beef infused with duck fat (yes, really) is so insanely juicy and flavorful that it wouldn’t need any accouterment, but tarragon mustard and a slab of smoked cheddar do nicely. We’d expect nothing less from chef Daniel del Prado, who has become a west-metro fine dining darling in recent years. Maybe it’s time to come east!

Blondette: 527 S. Marquette Ave., Minneapolis; 612-224-3750; blondettempls.com

The burger at Blondette in Minneapolis. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

6. * Maison Margaux

Depending on where you’re seated in chef David Fhima’s new Parisian restaurant, you might have to ask for the “Oui Burger” by name: The $23 foil-wrapped burger is available during happy hour in the main Brasserie and all the time in the opulent subterranean lounge, but it’s not printed on every menu. The single, quite thick patty is a high-end house grind that includes short rib and wagyu beef, and it’s topped with gruyere cheese on a bun that’s so all-around buttery, it literally glistens. And that’s it! A small cup of pickle slices and some fries come on the side. It’s ultra-beefy and indulgent and noticeably less salty than other burgers we’ve tried, but not in a way that feels underseasoned. Do be careful to shield your fancy clothes from oil drips. (Maison Margaux’s other French bistro staples — savory onion soup, cheesy aligot, creme brulee — are also fantastic, as are the restaurant’s cocktail and wine lists.)

Maison Margaux: 224 1st St. N, Minneapolis; 612-900-1800; maisonmargauxmpls.com

The “Oui Burger” served with pickles and fries at Maison Margaux in Minneapolis on Oct. 19, 2023. (Jared Kaufman / Pioneer Press)

7. * World Street Kitchen

This summer, trendy Minneapolis favorite World Street Kitchen added the beef kofta burger to its lineup of fast-casual global street food — and it’s a home run. Kofta, spiced ground beef that’s common in the Middle East and North Africa in meatball or kebab form, works perfectly as a burger patty topped with white American cheese, pickles and a not-so-spicy harissa burger sauce. The spices in the meat itself are fine-tuned, and all the toppings play off each other well. It’s unbelievably saucy (to be clear: in a good way!), so grab more extra napkins than you think you’ll need. Oh, and Milkjam Creamery is right next door.

World Street Kitchen: 2743 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis; (612) 424-8855; eatwsk.com

8. Angry Line Cook

This food truck rose from the ashes of Just/Us, the chef collective restaurant that existed in two separate St. Paul locations. The truck focuses mostly on its very, very good smash burger, which features two beef patties smooshed on a griddle, which produces a crispy meat skirt. There’s also plenty of house-made American cheese (made from fontina, gouda and fenugreek), a beef-stock aioli for extra umami goodness, house-made pickles and a nice, squishy bun. If you like things spicy — and we do — opt for the Angry Burger, which consists of the same smashed patties kicked up with house-made pepper-jack cheese, “angry sauce,” chili oil, and pickled Fresno peppers.

Angry Line Cook: Location varies, find them at theangrylinecookfoodtruck.com

The burger from The Angry Line Cook food truck. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

9. Herbie’s on the Park

In a world full of double smash burgers, Herbie’s is an unapologetic ½-pound thick patty. The juiciness of these behemoths, made from a brisket, short rib and chuck blend, cannot be overstated. Choose the patty adorned simply with melty American-Swiss, caramelized onions and house-made pickles; go for a fancy bacon-bleu, gilded with a blueberry/gochujang jam and arugula; or really mix it up with a French onion and Brie situation. It’s all good. And so are the garlic-herb fries, or the simple side salad, something we’ve come to love, especially in the thick of burger-reporting season. We have to get our veggies somehow.

Herbie’s on the Park: 317 Washington St., St. Paul; 651-726-1700; herbiesonthepark.com

The Herbie Burger at Herbie’s on the Park in downtown St. Paul. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

10. Holman’s Table

This pretty, midmodern-style restaurant in the St. Paul airport features a view of runway action without having to go through security. The menu has lots to offer, including a few burgers at lunch and a different set of burgers at dinner time, including the $300 burger, which isn’t actually $300, but it does clock in at a not-so-wallet-friendly $27.50. For that price tag, though, you get a juicy, beefy patty on a soft bun, topped with nutty gruyere and foie gras butter. The entire thing is then doused with a madeira truffle demi glace. It’s a fork-and-knife burger that one of our dining partners said tastes like “fancy salisbury steak.” He’s not wrong, but we also happen to love that nostalgic dish.

Holman’s Table: 644 Bayfield St., St. Paul; 612-800-5298; holmanstable.com

The $300 burger at Holman’s Table in St. Paul, which actually costs a mere (?) $27.50. It’s topped with foie gras butter and bathed in a truffle demi glace. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

11. Estelle

This southern European spot updates its burger nearly every year, but they are always, always good. Chef Jason Hansen created one of our other favorites in town — the burger at Stewart’s, now Gus Gus — and his commitment to a juicy, interesting burger cannot be understated. The current iteration is a double smash with American cheese, bacon and char-broiled tomatoes and topped with a typical burger sauce.

Estelle: 1806 St Clair Ave., St. Paul; 651-330-9648; estellestp.com

The 2022 burger at Estelle in St. Paul. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

12. Sonder Shaker

The buzz around this burger has been strong for the past few years, and after finally getting there to try it, we know why. Two wagyu beef patties are smashed and griddled until they develop a nice, crispy meat skirt. They’re topped with melty American cheese, house-made pickles and a fairly standard burger sauce. There’s nothing really outrageously different about this burger — it’s just executed perfectly. Though at $19 ($20 with the restaurant’s crisp, handcut fries) the price tag is not for the faint of heart or light of wallet. That said, the cocktails here are top-notch, too.

Sonder Shaker: 130 Hennepin Ave. E., Minneapolis; 612-353-6557; sondershaker.com

The burger at Sonder Shaker in Minneapolis. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

13. Gus Gus

We’ve given lots of love to chef Jason Hansen’s burger mind, and this double smash burger is based off the one at Stewart’s, which occupied the space before Gus Gus moved in last year. The two patties are juicy and beefy and crispy around the edges; exactly what we’re looking for. The caramelized onions and mustard aioli are both great. The burger’s one possible downside is the too-thick American cheese, which makes things so slippery that eating the burger is a challenge. The fries are served with ketchup, but hot tip: Ask for a side of the bagna cauda aioli, which comes with the fries when you order them as an app.

Gus Gus: 128 N. Cleveland Ave., St. Paul; 651-645-4128; gusgusmn.com

The cheeseburger at Gus Gus is a double smash burger with American cheese, caramelized onions, and mustard aioli, shown here on Oct. 8, 2022. (Jared Kaufman / Pioneer Press)

14. Everywhen Burger Bar

This burger spot, from restaurateur Jami Olson and executive chef Jose Alarcon, has set up shop in St. Paul this year, after starting on Eat Street in Minneapolis. Like Minneapolis, the St. Paul location is a dual concept, sharing space with taco-centric Centro.  Their Nicollet Burger is a single smashed patty with the fixings: American cheese, pickles, lettuce, tomato, onions, mayo. And it rocks. The meat itself is perfectly seasoned and crispy. And with just one patty, it’s a good lunch burger — not so heavy that it weighs you down for the afternoon. Nothing over-the-top; a classic done right. (Worth noting: Their chicken sandwich is also delightful, but that’s another story.)

Everywhen Burger Bar: 750 S. Cleveland Ave., St. Paul, 612-489-5558 or 2412 Nicollet Ave., Minneapolis, 612-452-9785; everywhenburgers.com

15. DeGidio’s

This burger was created when the now 90-year-old West Seventh Street Italian institution hired chef Shane Oporto, formerly of La Belle Vie and Octo FishBar, to consult on some menu items. Owner Jason Tschida knew he couldn’t change any of the old-school Italian favorites, so they “worked around the edges” of the menu, starting with this absolute stunner of a burger. It’s two patties, recently upgraded to wagyu beef, enrobed with nutty taleggio cheese and topped with a proprietary special sauce and a few crisp pickles before being nestled in a pillowy egg bun. And the fries are cut in-house and worth every calorie.

DeGidio’s: 425 W. 7th St., St. Paul; 651-291-7105; degidios.com


16. Chip’s Clubhouse

The buzz around this restaurant, which opened during the pandemic, from Hot Hands & Pie owner Tara Coleman and her friend Gina Mangiameli, is still going strong, and a lot of that buzz surrounds the burger.

Mangiameli worked for the Chicago restaurant group that includes Au Cheval, which is the place that inspired our local double-smash-burger trend. You can order Mangiameli’s version with one patty or two. I recommend a second, mostly for the meat-to-bun ratio. Share it if you must. The patties are wider than the (properly buttered and toasted) bun, and brought to a perfect crisp on a griddle. Thinly sliced onion and just the right amount of pickle bring the crunch. And a mustardy sauce perks things up.

Chip’s Clubhouse:  272 S. Snelling Ave., No. 200, St. Paul; 651-330-1617; visitchips.com

The burger at Chip’s Clubhouse in St. Paul. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

17. Kyndred Hearth

Did you know Ann Kim, queen of pizza, has a burger? Consider yourself informed. And as with everything else Kim creates, it’s delicious. It’s a trendy double-smash, adorned with American cheese, deeply caramelized onions, lettuce and fresh pickles and served on a soft bun. I went with friends, and we split the burger and some pizzas, because if you go to an Ann Kim pizza restaurant and don’t get pizza, were you even there?

Kyndred Hearth: 2611 Nordic Way, Eagan; 651-689-9800; omnihotels.com/hotels/viking-lakes-minnesota/dining/kyndred-hearth


18. Tongue in Cheek

Chef Leonard Anderson might be known for catering to vegans, but he knows his way around (sustainably raised) meat, too. The restaurant’s deceptively simple cheeseburger starts with a properly seasoned, juicy patty that is topped with just the right amount of melty American cheese, a great pickley sauce, crisp, shredded romaine and fresh pickles, all nestled in a lovely, squishy bun. The fries are good, too. While you’re there, balance things out with some vegetables, because the chef’s vegan and vegetarian dishes are some of our favorites in town.

Tongue in Cheek: 989 Payne Ave., St. Paul; 651-888-6148; tongueincheek.biz


19. Petite Leon

Chef Jorge Guzman is a master of flavor building, so it’s no surprise that his creation is frequently on the lips of those who obsess about burgers. Guzman is on the double-smash train, but he gives it the Oklahoma twist, which involves smashing some thinly sliced onions into those juicy (Peterson beef) patties. There’s melty cheese, but not too much, house-made pickles for pucker and a toasty milk bun. The cocktails and the rest of the menu items here are fabulous, too.

Petite Leon: 3800 Nicollet Ave., Minneapolis; 612-208-1247; petiteleonmpls.com

20. Stepchld

Most everything on this Northeast Minneapolis neighborhood restaurant menu is slightly askew — like, Ethiopian spiced birria tacos or garlic noodles with Japanese flavors — but the burger is pretty straightforward. It’s also delicious. Another double-smash, it has good beef flavor and proper char, crisp house-made pickles, and a squishy bun just like most of the others. Two things set it apart though: Super melty Cooper’s sharp American cheese and a swipe of smoky chipotle aioli. The shoestring fries that accompany it are also delicious.

Stepchld: 24 University Ave. N.E., Minneapolis; 612-354-7409; www.stepchld.com

21. Baldamar

This swanky steakhouse, which is also behind 6Smith in Wayzata, knows its way around a burger. Its lunch burger is a stunner: Two giant patties, plenty of melty swiss cheese and bacon that’s cured and smoked in-house join crisp iceberg, a brandy peppercorn sauce and fried onions on an airy Breadsmith roll for a tasty, and utterly filling (really, consider sharing it) sandwich. The hand-cut, deep-golden fries, served with a truffle aioli, aren’t hurting anything, either. We have yet to try the dinner burger, made with wagyu beef and topped with gouda and American cheeses, but it’s on our list of things to do.

Baldamar: 1642 W. County Road B2, Roseville; 651-796-0040; baldamar.com

This is the burger at Baldamar, the steakhouse at Rosedale Center. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

22. 112 Eatery

The spot has become a pilgrimage for burger connoisseurs and it’s easy to see why. James Beard winner chef Isaac Becker takes the classic burger to gourmet heights. The 112 Cheeseburger with grass-fed beef from Niman Ranch out of Iowa is blended with eggs, sauteed onions and spices for a juicy and tasty 6-ounce patty. It’s served with brie on a toasty English muffin, which is off the beaten path, but works wonderfully, allowing diners more enjoyment of the quality, mouthwatering patty without too much bun. House-made pickles with cucumbers with Fresno and Serrano chiles served on the side also add to the deliciousness of this dish.

112 Eatery: 112 N. Third St., Minneapolis; 612-343-7696; 112eatery.com

23. St. Dinette

If this restaurant’s decision to add plenty of butter to its burger’s beef grind is wrong, I don’t wanna be right. This simple, juicy, two-patty beauty, slathered with American cheese made in-house from Wisconsin cheddar, Wisconsin gruyere and champagne is absolutely one of our top three burgers. The burger comes unadorned, with a pile of sweet, house-made pickles on the side. You should order it while sitting at the bar, where the talented, friendly bartending staff takes care of all your drink needs and then some.

St. Dinette: 261 E. Fifth St., St. Paul; 651-800-1415; saintdinette.com.

Chef Adam Eaton’s buttery burger at St. Dinette in St. Paul. (Pioneer Press: Jessica Fleming)

24. Revival

The care that Chef Thomas Boemer puts into all his food is absolutely apparent in this burger. Boemer grinds grass-fed beef in-house, using 80% short rib and 20% brisket. That specific grind, tested over many months, gave Boemer the mouthfeel he was looking for. It’s purposely split into two patties to double the char flavor, but it’s somehow still pink in the middle. The meat is so good it almost doesn’t need cheese, but it doesn’t hurt, either. Even the slightly undersized bun is designed to put the focus on that fantastic meat. You can top it with really thick-cut bacon for an extra $2, but it doesn’t need it. At all. We could go on, but we’ll stop with this: Go get it.

Revival: 525 Selby Ave., St. Paul, 651-340-2355; 4257 Nicollet Ave. S., Minneapolis, 612-345-4516; revivalfriedchicken.com

The Revival burger with a side of buttery grits.(Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

25. The Lexington

Our love for this half-pound behemoth cannot be overstated. Dearly departed chef Jack Riebel’s recipe — house-ground steak trimmings to create a simple, beefy, juicy, stupid delicious burger that really does taste like steak — is still going strong. It’s topped simply with Swiss cheese, shredded lettuce, pickles, onions and the Lex “special sauce.” The swanky atmosphere of the Lex only adds to the experience.

The Lexington: 1096 Grand Ave., St. Paul; 651-289-4990; thelexmn.com

The burger at The Lexington on St. Paul’s Grand Avenue. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

26. Borough/Parlour

The Parlour Burger is served unadorned, save for what looks like a few slap-dash sliced pickles on the side, but it would be a mistake to judge this sandwich by its cover. Two thin, perfectly seared patties (made from freshly ground sirloin, rib-eye and brisket) absolutely drip with cheese and are contained by a grilled bun. In Minneapolis, if you want it for lunch, you’ll have to hit the upstairs stunner, Borough, or get it downstairs at the cocktail-centric Parlour in the evening. But at Parlour St. Paul, you can get it whenever they’re open.

Borough: 730 Washington Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-354-3135; boroughmpls.com
Parlour St. Paul: 267 W. Seventh St., St. Paul; 651-207-4433; parlourbar.com

The burger at Parlour Bar in St. Paul. (John Autey / Pioneer Press)

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