Best Burgers In Toronto
Fortunately, Toronto is a town with a keen understanding of how to prepare the world’s favourite fast food standby. These five destinations are by no means the only places to get an excellent burger in Toronto, but you won’t do much better.
Shrimp Stack Burger* – Momofuku Daisho
Third Floor, 190 University Ave., daisho.momofuku.com
To create this fine dining restaurant’s most popular dish, Chef Paula Navarrete starts with a soft sesame seed bun, baked fresh in-house daily and anointed with a special sauce of mayonnaise, gochujang and hozon (a fermented spread similar to miso). Next come layers of house-made pickles, shredded lettuce and pickled onions, followed by a patty of freshly ground chuck, brisket and short rib cooked perfectly medium. The finishing touch is a patty of diced Gulf shrimp mixed with chilli flakes and blanketed in a slice of American cheese. Combined with a side of tangy kohlrabi slaw and a stack of lightly tempura battered onion rings, this could be the tastiest example of east-meets-west since the California roll.
*Available on the lunch menu.
TCB Cheese Burger – The Carbon Bar
99 Queen St. East thecarbonbar.ca
Given the quality of the Texas-style smoked ribs and brisket at this barbecue joint, the fact that their burger is a perennial best-seller tells you something. The lineup of toppings changes every six months or so, but the star of the show remains the same: a big 8 oz patty of brisket and chuck mixed with trimmings from aged rib steaks for extra flavour. This burger comes on a pillowy milk bun alongside charred red onion, house-smoked bacon, Thunder Oak Gouda, yellow mustard, smoked chile mayo and house-made dill pickles. It takes a serious burger to hold its own on the menu here, and the TCB Cheese Burger certainly is that.
Banquet Burger – Harry’s Charbroiled
160 Springhurst Ave.; harryscharbroiled.com
Hidden between a No Frills supermarket and a convenience store down an unremarkable pedestrian walkway, the only thing that’s changed about this Parkdale dive bar in the last 50 years is the menu. After taking over the space in 2016, former Bar Isabel chef Nate Young left the charmingly grimy interior intact, focusing all his talents on creating a menu of simple, satisfying diner classics. As such, the Banquet Burger ticks all the right boxes. Juicy ground brisket patty? Check. Sky-high pile of bacon, tomato, onion, hot peppers, lettuce and American cheese? Check. Wonder bun? Check. Perched in its red plastic basket atop a mountain of crispy steak-cut fries, this burger is a throwback in the best possible way.
Classic Double Cheese Burger – Kitson and Co.
1205 Queen St West; kitsonandco.com
If the curated selection of muffalettas, banh mis and cheesesteaks on the chalkboard menu suggests these people are sandwich enthusiasts of the first degree, the Classic Double Cheeseburger proves it. Composed of two ground chuck patties draped in American cheese, onion, lettuce and tomato and house-made “secret sauce” on a fresh Thuet sesame seed bun, Kitson’s creation is what the Big Mac would be if it were made with love. Substitutions and additions are welcome here (in case you want to add pickles—which I did), as are catering orders.
Holy Chuck Burger – Holy Chuck
1450 Yonge St.; 586 Yonge St.; holychuckburgers.com
The menu here, which includes deep-fried Twinkies, bacon-and-chocolate fudge milkshakes and a towering six-stack patty “Go Chuck Yourself” is a burger lover’s fantasy. The best-selling item is The Holy Chuck burger, a signature sandwich composed of two ground chuck patties, two slices of American cheese, crispy bacon and a pile of sweet caramelized onions, served on a no-nonsense Weston bun.