Food Scene

Best burgers in Tempe

Top burgers in Tempe you must try

We all know that hamburgers are a staple of the American diet, but did you know that people in the U.S. eat an average of 50 billion burgers each year?  

It’s a given that a college town such as Tempe, Arizona, would have its fair share of restaurants that specialize in the best burgers around. And believe us when we say: there are many. So, the Tempe Tourism team has sampled burgers from more than a few burger spots around town, to help you find your next favorite. It’s a tough job, but someone had to do it.  

Without further ado, here is where you can find the best, most unique — and even unexpected — burgers in Tempe.  

The Chuckbox

202 E. University Dr., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 968-4712 
If it’s not broken, don’t fix it – this phrase certainly applies to local favorite, The Chuckbox. A Tempe mainstay for decades, The Chuckbox team continues to serve up some of the best burgers in town. The Big One is my personal favorite, made with a 1/3 pound beef patty. But, if you’re really hungry, go for The Great Big One, a ½ pound of ground chuck, or kick it up a notch with the Guacamole and Bacon Burger. Round your meal with Chuckbox Potatoes (fries) or beer-battered onion rings, and don’t forget to pass by the fixins’ bar. 

*Please note that The Chuckbox is a cash-only establishment.

Burgers and fries at The Chuckbox
The Chuckbox

Detroit Coney Grill

699 S. Mill Ave., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 350-7707
You may think of just hot dogs when you think of Detroit Coney Grill. But, we are here to tell you that they are just as well-known for their hamburgers. As a matter of fact, in 2016, Detroit Coney Grill in Tempe was listed in the top 10 best burger places in the United States, according to Yelp. That was important enough for them to be mentioned on the Travel Channel and National Geographic.
They have quite a few options on their menu, from the Shroom and Swiss to the Lettuce Wrapped burger. I went with a custom cheeseburger. You can choose how many patties you’d like (I went with two because they’re not thick) and then added blue cheese. And, you can’t get a burger without ordering their French fries made from hand-cut Idaho potatoes. By the way, you can get as many as seven burger patties. I have no words for this.

Four Peaks Brewing Company 

1340 E. 8th St., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 303-9967 
Four Peaks is known for its great beer, especially their best-selling beer, the Kilt Lifter. Let’s talk about the burgers … there’s a fair amount of choices but get a taste of the Mediterranean with the Lamb Burger. Full of flavor with this thick patty, topped with spinach, red onion, feta, house-made cucumber tzatziki on a focaccia bun. I am the person who cuts a burger in half to consume it easier, and it was tall and delicious, just what I needed to feed my hunger.

The brie burger at Four Peaks Brewing Company
Four Peaks Brewing Co. | Credit @letthemeatthis

The Lodge Sasquatch Kitchen

26 S. Farmer Ave., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 967-0578
When you enter The Lodge, prepare to feel like you’ve entered a fun, woodsy cabin with beamed ceilings, antler chandeliers, a stone fireplace, 30 TVs and two pine log bars. Also, be prepared to indulge. They offer several juicy burger options to choose from that are all frankly delicious. The burger they’re known for is the Sasquatch Burger, which includes bacon, fried onion strings, cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion served in between two Texas toast grilled cheese sandwiches. In other words, it’s amazingly tasty and plenty big enough to share or bring home for leftovers. For those of you looking for a veggie burger worth your time, The Lodge has you covered. The Veggie Burger features sliced avocado, grilled cottage cheese, garlic hummus, kale, sautéed mushrooms & onions, and sliced tomato, all on a pretzel bun.

Pedal Haus Brewery

730 S Mill Ave #102, Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 314-2337
Built to be a haven for lovers of bikes, good times, and great beer, Pedal Haus is also a must for burgers. All burgers come on a bakery-fresh sesame seed bun with a choice of either coleslaw or seasoned fries. Try the truffle fries as an extra bonus. I chose to go with the Sautéed Mushroom Burger, which has mushrooms sautéed in red wine with caramelized onions, shredded cheddar and garlic aioli. I paired my burger with one of their craft beers and enjoyed my meal on their enormous outdoor patio! And there are some awesome gluten-free and Vegan/Vegetarian options. Try the Bacon Burger served hot with grilled onions and delicious bacon on their new gluten-free bun with a side of perfectly seasoned fries!

The Porch

1128 E. Baseline Rd., Tempe, AZ 85283 | (602) 777-1757
The Porch Tempe is a fun, retro-inspired hangout, offering creative pub food, cocktails and lots of TVs for watching sports. Everything I’ve ever ordered here has been delicious, but the burgers are definitely worthy of being in our best burgers blog. Try the green chili burger – there’s a heap of shredded green chili pork added to your burger, with caramelized onions, queso, lettuce and chipotle aioli, all in between a brioche bun. Go hungry for this one!

Snakes & Lattes

20 W. 6th St., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 361-6644 
Canadian-based restaurant Snakes & Lattes in Downtown Tempe is a game haven with more than 1,000 board games from cards to strategy (a one-time game fee per day gets you unlimited access to their games). They also specialize in burgers! Check out the Smash Burger or the Impossible Burger while playing a round of Hungry, Hungry Hippo, or Connect 4.

Sunbar Tempe

24 W. 5th St., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 687-8409 
If you love Tempe’s Shady Park and C.A.S.A., you will not be disappointed with Sunbar Tempe. Not only have they made a name for themselves as a venue for live music and D.J.s, but they are also one of the most popular restaurants on Mill Avenue. And you guessed it… they have burgers! I went with the Blank Slate Burger because, well, I have control issues, and you get to perfect this burger to your liking! To start with, all burgers come with not one but two all-natural Arizona grass-fed ground beef, with vegan patties as an option. I opted to add lettuce, tomato, avocado, bacon and provolone. And I have to say, the side of waffle fries was just the perfect way to round out what was already a tasty meal. After you eat, stay for a show. You can check out their latest lineup by visiting their website. 

Sunbar is home to a giant burger and chicken sandwich
Sunbar | Credit: @blondeswhoeat

Thirsty Lion Gastropub

2000 E. Rio Salado Pkwy. #1041, Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 968-2920
This modern gastropub is located inside Tempe Marketplace and features a large patio to enjoy. The Gastropub Burger is a go-to favorite. It is infused with gorgonzola and is topped with grilled sweet onion, maple pepper bacon, white cheddar, arugula and horseradish cream, all on a grilled ciabatta bun. Or go meatless with a Beyond Burger, which is also very delicious. We also encourage you to order a starter or salad before your burger arrives as they are mouthwateringly good.

I don’t eat meat, then what?

While many of these establishments offer vegetarian menu items, nothing compares to the plant-based offerings at Green New American Vegetarian, one of Tempe’s locally owned vegan/vegetarian restaurants serving up delicious handhelds. We recommend the Big Wac!

While many of these establishments offer vegetarian menu items, nothing compares to the plant-based offerings at Green New American Vegetarian, one of Tempe’s locally owned vegan/vegetarian restaurants serving up delicious handhelds. We recommend the Big Wac!

Have another favorite burger spot? Tell us in the comments below! Use #OurTempe so we can feature your photos! Happy eating!

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