You don’t have to go all the way into New York City for an incredible burger: there’s actually seriously great burgers in Upstate New York. With plenty of farm fresh local produce, old school diners and creative restaurants with talented chefs at the helm, you’ll be in food heaven here.
Get ready to dig into these tasty burgers all the way from Albany to Buffalo.
Best Burgers In Upstate New YorkHow do these rankings work?
Located at the iconic Smiley’s location at the traffic light in the city, Mama’s Boy Burgers is famous for serving up local, grass-fed Angus beef burgers to its loyal customers. If you’re ever Upstate, then you need to try their Jersey Boy burger. It’s a feast of two beef patties with smoked mozzarella, Italian peppers, tomato, fresh basil, and basil mayo.
Meyer’s Old Dutch eatery is known for its delicious burgers and killer crispy sandwiches. The chef here, Brian Arnoff, is praised for those mouth watering double patty burgers that the restaurant is famous for. Served with fries and coleslaw, this is a great place to have a hearty lunch.
The portions are large and the service is fantastic! What else could you need from one of the best places for burgers in Upstate New York? If you’re ever pulling off the New York State Thruway on Exit 30, then you’ll wanna check this spot out.
Their Loose Caboose burger is to die for, which is topped with thinly sliced prime rib, cheddar and jack cheese, fried egg, 1000 Island dressing and mayo.
A neighbourhood Irish bar turned restaurant in 1987, Blarney Stone offers consistently food alongside friendly service. The Blarney burger has become a star on its own, with a super juicy half-pound beef patty cooked to your liking on a fresh kaiser roll. Add on cheese, mushrooms, bacon or jalapenos for a proper feast.
Want feel-good burgers? Grazin’ Diner offers local, grass-fed, organic beef served fresh between two warm buns. There’s nine droolworthy burgers to choose from here, including a new chef’s special each week. You can choose exactly how you want the beef to be cooked (medium is perfect!) and add on toppings such as organic cheese and bacon.
This creative restaurant serves one of the best burgers in Upstate New York. Chef Matt’s innovative specials and the restaurant’s unforgettable dining experience is all the hype in Binghamton. Their spicy Southern BBQ burger is a mouth watering delight. When it comes to the tastiest burgers in Upstate New York, this place ticks all the boxes.
Juicy Burgers are made to order from fresh ingredients, using the restaurant’s own unique recipes for a tasty feast. Their Poutine Burger is made with fresh mozzarella curds, french fries and gravy – who needs to go to Canada for authentic poutine anyway? Other must-eats include the Illadelphia on a pretzel bun with cheese sauce, and peppers.
If you’re ever in Buffalo, you need to check this spot out. Allen Burger Venture serves up dry-aged grass-fed Angus beef burgers that are hormone and antibiotic-free, and full of flavour. There’s 14 beef burgers on the menu (with gourmet toppings of forest mushroom & cambozola cheese, or truffle cream cheese), as well as 11 other ‘alternative’ burgers such as bison, wild boar and veggie patties.
Dave’s Gourmet Burgers cooks up some of the best – in fact, the best – burgers in the town of Schenectady, including veggie burgers. Try the classic Big Juicy, which is a 6 oz loaded burger, or go all out with a tender Kobe beef burger or their award-winning bison Juicy Lucy. That mouthful of meat and melted cheese is unbeatable…
The burgers at this Lackawanna joint are always fresh and super yummy. As the name suggests, this restaurant is famous for stacking up beef patties high on top of each other for huge, towering burgers. You can order up to a triple stack burger if you’re extra hungry, but be sure to bring an appetite.
Ice cream, shakes and burgers. Yum, yum and yum. It’s safe to say that Jerry’s Place is the ultimate American fast food experience. The burgers at Jerry’s place start with a ⅓ ground beef patty served with homemade chips, pickles and various sides. What to order? Their bacon cheeseburger is super-delicious with thick sliced apple-wood bacon.
Home of Central New York’s award winning burger, The BBQ Best, Village Burger is a local business that has a really tasty menu. You can build your own burger or choose one of their specialty burgers such as their challenging Towering Inferno. It’s a one pound double decker burger topped with pepper jack cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato, and their home made Inferno sauce.
This local bistro is a firm favourite amongst locals for a tasty burger and a beer or two. Allen Street Hardware Cafe’s specialty burgers include 12 oz bison and their 12 oz elk patties – the perfect feast if you fancy something different. Add on toppings such as Asiago cheese or a fried egg to finish it off.
A modern take on the American burger joint, Swillburger is part of Playhouse, where you’ll also find a craft bar and vintage games arcade. They source their tender beef from local farms, keeping the menu simple. A focus on soft, fresh buns, juicy beef and classic toppings (their ‘Dad’s Pickles’ are great!) makes this a winner.
Hudson Valley Magazine called Bun Burgers the “Best Hidden Gem Burger Joint” and we have to agree. They want to prove that eating burgers and fries can be healthy as well. Yep, you heard that right! By using the fresh ingredients and sticking to healthier cooking practices, the burgers here are actually full of goodness.
The Evergreen serves up a tempting variety of different delicious small plates, sandwiches, burgers and salads. There’s lots of great burgers to chow down on, so it’s tough to pick just one. Their Beet & Grain burger is a real highlight though, with a pitcher of beer to make it a complete meal.
Swifty’s is a fun Irish bar and restaurant in Utica that has a great atmosphere and serves amazing burgers and booze. If you’re the type of person that likes to have a beer or two while devouring a delicious burger, then Swifty’s is the place to go. Order their patty melt burger for a wonderfully cheesy feast.
The local tavern is a popular go-to place in Buffalo for droolworthy bites to eat and good vibes. Naturally (or it wouldn’t make this list!) NYE Park Tavern has a great menu for burger lovers. There’s loads to choose from, but the Cognac Mushroom burger is an indulgent treat: it’s a pepper encrusted beef patty with cognac mushrooms, Swiss cheese, candied applewood bacon & dijon aioli.
This lowkey family burger bar in Rochester is a must-visit for its hearty menu of burgers and sandwiches. You can dig into one of their own signature creations, or let loose and build your own burger masterpiece. With juicy Angus beef that’s full of flavour and fresh toppings, this place is really great.
Make a beeline to The Owl House for modern American eats and craft beers. It’s well known for a fantastic menu of vegan fare, but they also have a superb beef burger (you can get it as a chickpea patty either!). It comes with arugula, pickles, ketchup, mayo or vegan mayo, on a toasted baker’s bun.
As one of the friendliest places in town, the Belmar Pub has a lot going for it. Mostly, we love it ‘cos it’s home to some of the best burgers in Upstate New York. The Belmar Burger serves up freshly grilled Angus beef patties on on a yeasty toasted bun with lettuce, tomato, onion and mayo. Two words: burger perfection.
This charming sandwich store has all sorts of divine things to eat on the menu, with a range of sandwiches on super fresh and soft bread. A real highlight is the Jalepeno Burger: a 10oz. Angus hamburger topped with melted hot pepper cheese, cajun jalapeno onion straw, lettuce, tomato, & cajun mayo on a grilled cheddar cheese jalapeno bread.
What’s not to love about Beer Belly Deli & Pub? All their meats (the burger is a 50/50 chuck and brisket blend) are marinated, braised and seasoned on site, they focus on fresh and local ingredients and their pillowy soft burgers buns are baked daily. Burger toppings is also where they shine, with candied bacon and deep fried mozzarella galore.
Practically a synonym for “delicious burgers” in Albany, Crave offers a mouth watering variety of burgers including the Crave Burger and their famous Black and Blue burger. Or, really pig out with the French Onion: a Provolone stuffed beef patty, brioche bun toasted with provolone and American cheese, short ribs, caramelized onions, served with French onion soup for dipping.
The iconic roadside diner in the Catskills is where young and old come for a feel-food feast. ‘Diner’ is not the best word to describe this place, as the food is above and beyond any usual standard diner fare. High quality ingredients and skilful cooking combine to make some of the best burgers in Upstate New York.