Tracking down the Silver State’s best burgers.
America’s favorite food was born in the mid-1800s when vendors started serving “steak in the Hamburg style,” which meant lower-quality beef that was ground, spiced, cooked, and served between bread. First popular
with immigrants and sailors, hamburgers soon swept the nation as a meal for the common folk that was cheap, tasty, and portable.
Today, hamburgers are ubiquitous: a culinary staple nearly guaranteed on every restaurant menu in the country (and many abroad). Despite this proliferation, burger tourism is a rewarding venture because every region offers a unique spin on the classic. Such is the experience across Nevada, and while every community has at least one great burger option, we HIGHLY recommend these.
Middlegate originated as a stagecoach station for travelers across the Great Basin and even served as a pitstop for the Pony Express. Today, this must-try roadhouse serves Highway 50 travelers with a historic saloon and a tasty menu packed with comfort food.
Of course, you can’t talk about Middlegate without mentioning their famous burger challenge. For the brave—and hungry—among you, don’t miss their 3.5-pound, triple-decker beast: the Middlegate Monster Burger.
The Monster consists of Angus beef on a sourdough bun, lettuce, tomatoes, red onions, pickles, cheese, peppers and olives, two large onion rings, and a pile of fries. Translation? Seriously good eats, and a lot of it.
Eat it all and walk away with a T-shirt and total bragging rights. It’s estimated that only one in 10 make it, but even if you don’t finish, you can look forward to plenty of leftovers.
Trekkers on Nevada’s Highway 95 are familiar with the long, quiet drive between Reno and Las Vegas. Only a handful of towns dot this north-south corridor, one being Mina.
Some might roll past this old railroad town not knowing it’s home to one of the state’s best burgers. In fact, this little shack offers a popular selection beyond its burgers including Mexican cuisine, cheesesteak,
How does La Casita achieve a darn-near 5-star reputation? They specialize in crafting a satisfying kick with the freshest Ortega chili, jalapeños, and pepper jack cheese served alongside their special blend of spices. For those looking for more tang than heat, try the bacon cheeseburger—the most popular item on the menu.
Suffice it to say, there is plenty of competition for the title of Las Vegas’ best burger. Sickies Garage puts its thumb on the scale with its massive menu offering more than 30 burger choices.
You’ll find plenty of classic and indulgent choices, including the famous Sickies Burger: a hillock of bacon, eggs, pulled pork, onion rings, hot sauce, and melted cheese. For the more refined burger connoisseurs
among us, a range of Kobe beef burgers will certainly please.
But Sickies Garage also takes the humble hamburger into a near-surrealist reimagining. Don’t miss the Glazed Donut Burger, the Macaroni and Cheese, or the County Fair (cheese curds and fried jalapenos). We recommend the Twin Cam, which swaps out traditional buns for two grilled cheese sandwiches.
RACKS BAR & GRILL
Located in the heart of historic Ely, Racks Bar & Grill is one of those rural Nevada establishments where all the talk seems to center on one menu item: the Basque Chorizo Burger.
Basque heritage runs deep in northern Nevada, and anything with chorizo is practically a homemade hit. Racks’ Chorizo burger is no different. The chorizo—crafted from a top-secret recipe—is served on a fresh pretzel roll with a roasted red pepper and chipotle mayo.
The signature dish alone is reason enough to recommend Racks, but you’ll find a wide array of gourmet burgers complete with toasted buns, delicious sauces, and a heaping portion of fries.
This Midtown diner sources its top-tier beef directly from Ponderosa Meat Co., located right next door. Beefy’s menu has everything from poutine and fried pickles to stuffed hotdogs and chicken sandwiches, but the burgers are a house specialty.
Offering more than a dozen delectable concoctions, Beefy’s has a burger for all palate preferences. Love eggs and bacon? Order the Breakfast Burger. Looking for marinara and pepperoni? Try the Pizza Burger. Need sweet and spicy sauce and kimchi? That’ll be the Korean Burger.
If you’re prone to choice paralysis, you can’t go wrong with the Awesome Awesome. This local favorite presents two patties, four different types of cheese, grilled onions, and plenty of Thousand Island.