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Burger at Causwells
Photograph: Yelp/ Sophia K. Burger at Causwells

The best burgers in San Francisco

Find prime patties and perfect buns at these top spots serving some of the best burgers in San Francisco

By Matt Charnock

Ask any two people where to find the best burgers in San Francisco and you’re likely to have a fight on your hands. San Franciscans aren’t merely passionate about the quest for the perfect patty, we’re downright fierce. We’ve scoured the best San Francisco restaurants and burger joints to compile this shortlist of our favorites. Forget In-N-Out and opt to dine inside at one (or more) of these perfect burger destinations. 

RECOMMENDED: The best french fries in San Francisco

Burgers in San Francisco

Marlowe burger
Photograph: Yelp/Julie W.

1. Marlowe

Restaurants Contemporary American SoMa

If you haven't tried the brussels sprout chips, burger and poulet vert at Marlowe, you may be the only one in town.  The near-mythical Marlowe burger—a combo of beef and lamb, with caramelized onions, cheddar, bacon and horseradish aioli— is something of a local legend. 

Best Damn Cheeseburger at 4505 Burgers & BBQ
Photograph: Yelp/Wiriya T.

2. 4505 Burgers & BBQ

Restaurants Barbecue NoPa

4505's claim to fame might be its Best Damn Cheeseburger. The quarter-pound pattie comes on a griddled sesame and scallion bun with freshly cut iceberg lettuce, sliced red onion, a slice or two of melted Gruyere cheese and house secret sauce. 

Burger at Almanac Taproom
Photograph: Yelp/Kat B.

3. Almanac Taproom

Bars Breweries Mission

Almanac Beer finally has a tap room to call their own, offering a draft source for the craft brewery’s signature farm-to-barrel brews. The hefty burger is best enjoyed on the sunny outdoor patio. Head on over during Happy Hour (Mon–Fri 3–6pm) to take advantage of the $10 Cheeseburger and a Beer combo. 

Beep’s Burgers
Photograph: Yelp/Pablo B.

4. Beep’s Burgers

Restaurants Hamburgers Ingleside

Yes, you can still get a gourmet burger for under $7 in San Francisco. Beep's all-Angus beef quarter-pound burger comes slathered with a secret sauce (a mix of mayo, ketchup, paprika, and cayenne) and layered with leafy romaine and melted cheddar on a soft Semifreddi’s bun. For sides, crispy onion rings and Twinkie milkshakes complete the meal. 

Burger at Black Sands Brewery
Photograph: Yelp/ Orchid B.

5. Black Sands Brewery

Bars Breweries Lower Haight

The Black Sands burger is an American classic: two pressed patties, special sauce that incorporates both soy sauce and garlic aioli, pickles, and heaping amounts of American cheese underneath a white bread bun. It comes with a side of thick cut fries. We recommend washing it all down with Black Sands Brewery’s iconic Pinot Passion beer. 

Gott’s Roadside
Photograph: Robb McDonough

6. Gott's Roadside

Restaurants Hamburgers SoMa

Gott's offers ten different burger variations made from a hefty 1/3 pound of Niman Ranch Angus beef cooked to juicy pink perfection, as well as veggie, Diestel Ranch turkey and ahi tuna burgers. Try the classic cheeseburger or go rogue with a Western Bacon Blue Ring, topped with blue cheese, bacon, pickles, barbecue sauce and an onion ring; or the green chile cheeseburger with grilled Anaheim chiles. 

Burger at Causwells
Photograph: Yelp/ Sophia K.

7. Causwells

Restaurants American Marina District

This award-winning burger boasts two char-grilled patties and perfectly melted cheese topped with house sauce and crispy onions. Pair with a side of garlic aioli French Fries and stock up on napkins—this is a messy endeavor. 

Impossible Burger at Jardinière
Photograph: Yelp/Jason C.

8. Jardinière

Restaurants Californian Hayes Valley

Chef-owner Traci Des Jardin is one of the consulting chefs at Impossible Foods, a vegan meat company, and has feature the Impossible Burger on the bar menu from the beginning. Try it topped with avocado slices, mashed avocado, caramelized onions, tomato, gem lettuce, and vegan dijonnaise on a potato bun. 

Burger at Zuni Café
Photograph: Yelp/Crystal P.

9. Zuni Café

Restaurants Californian Hayes Valley

This SF staple is made from house-ground Marty Ranch beef and comes topped with house-made pickles and your choice of Beecher’s Flagship cheese (we recommend Bayley Hazen blue) as well as grilled onions and portobello mushrooms, served between grilled rosemary focaccia bread. Pair it with shoestring potatoes or marinated olives. 

Off menu burger at Heirloom Cafe
Photograph: Yelp/Carol Y.

10. Heirloom Cafe

Restaurants Californian Mission

Heirloom Cafe's off-menu, epoisses-topped burger is an ode to simplicity. Shallots are ground into the hella thick patty, which is charred on a cast-iron pan, then finished in the oven till medium rare. In lieu of traditional fries, slices of pickled carrots accompany each order.

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