Hello, hello! Olivia here, back again with another list of “bests” from Milwaukee. This list of best burgers in Milwaukee is my longest list yet, and for good reason: We have an incredibly ginormous amount of choices for burgers here in MKE! It’s actually insane. There are clearly a million different equally enjoyable ways to eat a burger in this city. You have the classic old-school buttery diner burger, the upscale one-of-a-kind artisan topping burger, the unexpected and wildly inventive burger, among many other genres!
Now to be clear, I have certain qualifications for a list of the best burgers in Milwaukee. Don’t worry, there are just a few! I personally like burgers with really good quality meat, if it’s local to Wisconsin, even better. I like the patty to be juicy and grilled to perfection. I like them to be stacked with toppings that are just as delicious as the burger itself. And the accompanying bun must be quality as well, preferably toasted. I really appreciate a creative approach to burger-making. The more interesting the toppings, the more I’ll like the burger. BUT – the flavors must meld together as if they were born to lay between the buns together, without overpowering the flavor of the meat. The burger patty must be able to stand alone on its own.
See? Not so hard, right?
I understand that my list is long and specific. Some people want a simple burger with the usual ketchup, mustard, onions, and maybe a pickle (give or take a few toppings). With that in mind, I compiled a list of what I have decided is the best of both worlds: classic and gourmet.
So here you have it, the 20 best burgers in Milwaukee.
20. The Wicked Hop
At The Wicked Hop, I love the “build your own burger” option. The burger starts at $10 and increases according to the amount/type of toppings you add. I really enjoy the different additions that they offer, like Boursin cheese, Applewood smoked bacon, guacamole, and of course all the classics too. This is a great place to grab one of the best burgers in Milwaukee if you have a group of people with many different tastes. You can all create your own version of burger perfection! Plus, my favorite part about burgers at The Wicked Hop is that on Sundays, toppings are free. That’s right, so one of each please and thank you. Obviously, you know where I’ll be on Sunday.
$$$$ Bars, American (Traditional), Breakfast & Brunch 345 N Broadway, Milwaukee, WI 53202 • (414) 223-0345
19. Northpoint Custard
Seasonal, but oh so sensational. Northpoint Custard by Bradford Beach is open for just a few short months during the summer. But while it’s open, you’ve gotta make it down there! Not only is their custard amazing, their burger is pretty top-of-the-line for a tiny little food stand. I would expect nothing less from a restaurant in the Bartolotta’s fam! They actually are also in the airport and a couple other spots, if you’re looking for them during the off-season.
$$$$ Burgers, Ice Cream & Frozen Yogurt 2272 N Lincoln Memorial Dr, Milwaukee, WI 53202 • (414) 727-4886
SEE ALSO: TOP 10 MILWAUKEE RESTAURANTS
18. Oscar’s Frozen Custard & Sandwiches
Oscar’s has been my go-to burger and custard spot since high school. It’s quick and hits the spot and they serve one of the best burgers in Milwaukee. I particularly love the Mushroom Swiss. Everything at Oscar’s is super reasonably priced too (any one of their 1/2lb burgers will be under $5). And if you’re going to get a burger, you should probably try their delicious fried cheese curds too. They have multiple locations to satisfy your cravings wherever you may be.
$$$$ Ice Cream & Frozen Yogurt, Burgers, Sandwiches 2362 S 108th St, West Allis, WI 53227 • (414) 327-5220
17. Milwaukee Burger Company
We found ourselves at a sit-down restaurant in the suburbs for this one – Milwaukee Burger Company. All of their burgers are hand-pattied in-house and are made from 100% Premium Angus Chuck. My favorite part about this place was their special combination of meats called the MBC Grind – short rib, brisket, and chuck. And it is fabulous. You can choose from 5 different types of meat for your burger at Milwaukee Burger Company, including a vegan option. Pictured here are the The Steakhouse and The Do Gooder.
$$$$ Burgers 6421 S 27th St, Franklin, WI 53132 • (414) 301-9938
SEE ALSO: TOP 12 TACO SPOTS IN MILWAUKEE
16. Nite Owl Ice Cream Parlour & Sandwich Shoppe
This is one of those Milwaukee classics that everyone has come to know and love. The Nite Owl opens at 11am and is known to be sold out long before the time they technically shut things down (at 4pm). Since the 70s, they have been purveyors of that simple, classic, delicacy that is the drive-in burger.
$$$$ Ice Cream & Frozen Yogurt, Sandwiches 830 E Layton Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53207 • (414) 483-2524
Don’t let the Flavor of the Day overshadow the deliciousness that Kopp’s offers with their burgers! Although I must say, the Flavor of the Day would be an excellent option for dessert… Kopp’s super simple “jumbo” hamburgers are a Milwaukee staple and undoubtedly one of the best burgers in Milwaukee. Visit one of their three locations to test one out for yourself!
$$$$ Ice Cream & Frozen Yogurt, Burgers 7631 W Layton Ave, Greenfield, WI 53220 • (414) 282-4312
SEE ALSO: BEST FROZEN CUSTARD SPOTS IN MILWAUKEE
14. Cafe Bavaria
You might not expect one of the best burgers in Milwaukee to come out of a German restaurant, yet here we are! The Ludvig at Cafe Bavaria is super creative with its apple chutney and herbed garlic cheese. An expert combo, on top of a pretzel bun. That’s another thing I love, pretzel buns! They actually have quite a few interesting burgers on their menu in between all of the German eats. They are all 1/3 lb grass-fed, grain-finished, prime beef smash patties. Find Cafe Bavaria in the heart of downtown Tosa.
$$$$ German, Gastropubs, Sandwiches 7700 Harwood Ave, Wauwatosa, WI 53213 • (414) 271-7700
13. Mazo’s Hamburgers
Since 1934, Mazos may be the place to make the most of your money! Each of their delicious burgers comes with a side and fries, for under $7. One of those side options is homemade soup! A simple, no-frills restaurant and menu serving up quality burgers. It is one of those little “hole-in-the-wall” joints that people have been visiting for decades and decades.
$$$$ Burgers, Soup, Breakfast & Brunch 3146 S 27th St, Milwaukee, WI 53215 • (414) 671-2118
12. ABV Social
ABV Social is part of the Mayfair Collection, so shop then stop for a burger! I like how they’re always changing up their burger menu with new and different combinations of toppings. It would be a great spot to stop for a drink, a burger, and a football game. In their industrial warehouse-esque building, they have a large bar with a pretty extensive seating area.
$$$$ Sports Bars, Burgers, American (Traditional) 11200 W Burleigh St, Wauwatosa, WI 53222 • (414) 837-6290
SEE ALSO: TOP 11 BRUNCH SPOTS IN MILWAUKEE
11. Solly’s Grille
Lots of Milwaukeeans will list Solly’s as their go-to for one of the best burgers in Milwaukee. They are known for being the butteriest masterpieces you’ve ever laid your eyes (and appetites) on. Open since 1936, their claim to fame is that they are literally “Home of the Butter Burger.” Their 100% sirloin beef is doused in real Wisconsin creamery butter, then topped with your favorite accoutrements. And in case you were wondering, yes, their butter burgers are available for breakfast! I thought you’d never ask.
$$$$ Burgers, American (Traditional), Breakfast & Brunch 4629 N Port Washington Rd, Milwaukee, WI 53212 • (414) 332-8808
10. LuLu Cafe
LuLu Cafe makes its way onto many of my lists for a variety of reasons. This time, it’s because of their burgers! LuLu is a place that I am always down to try their weekly special, and they usually stick a really good burger on that list. This one pictured had an olive tapenade, something I had never tried before on top of a burger. But in true LuLu fashion, they knocked it out of the park. I highly recommend trying whatever burger they throw on their specials menu for the week! They do have them on their regular menu too.
$$$$ American (New), Burgers, Sandwiches 2265 S Howell Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53207 • (414) 294-5858
Another Milwaukee staple – Sobleman’s. They are mostly known for their absolutely insane Bloody Mary (you know, the one that includes an entire rotisserie chicken). But their burgers are probably just as famous, definitely one of the best burgers in Milwaukee. Walk in during any day of the week, and you’ll be met with a full house. Yet they always seem to be able to find a spot for you in their little pub on St. Paul. The burgers at Sobleman’s are a family favorite, a business meeting necessity, and a late night snack, all at the same time. My favorite is The Bomb.
$$$$ Pubs, American (Traditional), Burgers 1900 W St Paul Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53233 • (414) 931-1919
The burger at Palomino is one that I truly love for the meat itself. FRESH. GROUND. BRISKET…along with the usuals, their secret sauce, on a brioche bun. Fun fact – you can get all the way up to a quadruple burger, if you’re willing to fork out $19. Otherwise, a single is $10, and one of the best quality patties around.
$$$$ Bars, Southern, American (New) 2491 S Superior St, Milwaukee, WI 53207 • (414) 747-1007
7. Merriment Social
#1 way to be merry – The Merriment Burger at Merriment Social. As evident by these photos, this burger is mouthwateringly delish. Another notable factoid is that they have a Happy Hour burger series with a burger that changes every week for $5 every Tues-Fri from 4-6. Crazy good deal, right? And I swear to you, the burgers they create are like none other.
$$$$ American (New), Burgers, Beer Bar 240 E Pittsburgh Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53204 • (414) 645-0240
6. Stack’d Burger Bar
Milwaukee may be known for their bars, but I prefer when “bar” has “burger” in the title. And mmm…the Campfire Burger at Stack’d is one of the best burgers in Milwaukee. It’s one off their “Specialty Stacks” menu, which is truly extensive. The jalapeño bacon, bleu cheese, haystack onions, and chipotle mayo meld together like a dream come true. I also love the balsamic-glazed Portabella Stack, topped with goat cheese, tomato, and red onion. I like that you can also build a burger from scratch from their vast menu of topping options. It’s legit HUGE. They sure do have the makings of a good burger bar!
$$$$ Burgers, American (Traditional), Beer Bar 170 S 1st St, Milwaukee, WI 53204 • (414) 273-7800
5. Georgie Porgie’s
I love Georgie Porgie’s for the high-quality experience that they bring to a fast-casual burger and custard spot. Most of their ingredients are local, coming from the state of Wisconsin. My favorite is the beer cheese bacon burger, in fact, I had to go run and get one while brainstorming about how this list would be arranged! The restaurant is also super family-friendly, with a giant tree in the middle of the place! It makes you feel like you’re camping, but with way better food.
$$$$ Burgers, American (Traditional), Beer Bar 9555 S Howell Ave, Oak Creek, WI 53154 • (414) 571-9889 ext. 1
4. AJ Bomber’s
AJ Bombers made their way onto this list of best burgers in Milwaukee long before I ever sat down to put it all into words. My favorite burger here is the Milwaukee Burger, and the Travel Channel agrees with me, naming it the winner on Food Wars. So throw some peanuts on the floor and order one for yourself! (Also, get the malted coffee custard for dessert…just saying.)
$$$$ Burgers, American (Traditional) 1247 N Water St, Milwaukee, WI 53202 • (414) 221-9999
Had to throw a curveball onto this list! Goodkind wouldn’t typically be known as a burger joint, by any means. Their ever-changing menu is loaded with delicacies. But on Tuesday nights – it’s Burger Night. An artisanally prepared experience
will be presented to you at Goodkind. Here’s a shining example: a Carlisle beef patty, seared pork pate, pimento cheese, pickle, and cider vinegar slaw. And they serve food until 1am! New week, new burger. And one of the best burgers in Milwaukee.
$$$$ Bars, Soul Food, American (New) 2457 S Wentworth Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53207 • (414) 763-4706
2. Oscar’s Pub & Grill
This is one of the burgers that was recommended to me as I did my burger research for this list of best burgers in Milwaukee. Time and time again, people were bringing up Oscar’s and telling me that I must go. And I am SO glad that I finally did. For under $8, The Big O will knock your socks off. I may or may not have ordered it because my name starts with an O. Anyway, it is 8 oz of Premium Black Angus Burger, topped with chipotle jack, gouda, hickory bacon, chorizo, fried onions, and a side of guacamole. I felt like this burger (and Oscar’s in general) is a prime example of a traditional burger joint – but elevated. The combinations of toppings please me, while the affordable and delicious classic burgers please those who like to stick to the classics.
$$$$ American (New), Pubs, Burgers 1712 W Pierce St, Milwaukee, WI 53204 • (414) 810-1820
1. Crafty Cow
The new-ish kid on the block, Crafty Cow, has stolen my heart. Their burgers are GREAT, made with their take on the Jucy Lucy style recipe. And most of them are stuffed with something different, which is super cool! Not to mention yummy. This one right here is the Pork Mi, stuffed with pepper jack cheese, topped with cucumber, carrot, cilantro, jalapeño, scallions, pineapple teriyaki, and pulled pork. But I do love all of their burgers. Every one I’ve ever tried has amazed me. I think the secret’s in the stuffing, but that’s just me. Crafty Cow crafts the perfect burger, that’s for sure!
$$$$ Burgers 2675 S Kinnickinnic Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53207 • (414) 808-0481