We’re not completely sure when the traditional hamburger stopped being enough, but a quick Internet search should convince anyone that that’s exactly what’s happened. Today, the onset of burger boredom has spurred creations so inventive (and often gluttonous) that some examples have even made national news. We went on the hunt for the most impressive of all and found a few that are sure to make a lasting impression on the way you think about burgers. Check out our favorite crazy creations below, and you’re sure to reach the same conclusion as we have: When it comes to thinking outside the bun, these culinary pioneers have it down pat.
UP Mario Burger:
Instructables.com first introduced the public to this Nintendo-themed veggie burger, and it quickly picked up appreciation in the hamburger ‘hood. Gobble up the mushroom-shaped treat, and you may just earn yourself an extra life!
The Luther Burger sandwiches the contents of your standard bacon cheeseburger between two glazed donuts, sparking heated Internet debate since its debut on ThisIsWhyYourFat.com and 1nation.com. Rumored to be inspired by Luther Vandross, its origin can only really be traced back to a mention in a 2006 episode of The Boondocks.
The Fifth Third Burger:
The newest addition to the West Michigan Whitecaps’ ballpark menu is picking up quite a bit of media attention, having recently been featured on “Inside Edition”, “The Today Show” and the Early Show. Named after Fifth Third Bancorp, the team sponsor, the burger weighs in at a whopping 4 lbs and packs 4,800 calories, stacking five one-third pound hamburger patties, chili, nacho cheese, Fritos, salsa, lettuce, tomato and sour cream on an 8-inch sesame seed bun.
“The Aussie” from downtown Manhattan’s Burger Burger loads a gently-toasted brioche bun with a 6oz angus patty, which is then topped with lettuce, tomato, a thick slab of roasted beet and a fried egg “for good measure,” says Daniel Krieger, the official Downtown Lunch Correspondent for MidtownLunch.
The French Onion Burger:
The French Onion Burger from Burger Deluxe in Wayne, NJ is one of many palate-friendly burgers fueling the outbreak of gourmet burger joints across the country (not to mention the world!). Capped with a crunchy Parmesan-panko topping, sautéed onions and provolone cheese, the burger needs no further explanation of its culinary merits.
The Original Burger:
Ranked high on GQ’s infamous “The 20 Hamburger’s You Must Eat Before You Die” list, we couldn’t resist including this seared burger on toast from Louis Lunch—a restaurant in New Haven, Connecticut, that claims to be the birthplace of the hamburger. It pairs a freshly-ground steak patty with Louis’s works, which include onions (grilled into the burger as it cooks) and sliced tomato. Just don’t ask for ketchup—it’s forbidden at the establishment.
The Double Toastie Burger:
Certainly the most gluttonous on this list, the Double Toastie Burger involves stacking 100% British-beef burger patties, thin-cut Spanish chorizo and Monterey Jack cheese between several layers of cheddar-bacon Toasties (bread stuffed with—you guessed it—bacon and cheddar). Douse with spicy barbecue sauce.
The Butter Burger:
Yes, people really do eat these. According to RoadFood.com, they hail from Milwaukee, where “there is no such thing as too much butter.” Each serving packs up to two tablespoons of butter, which is spread on the bun and used to cook the burger, as well as any accompanying toppings.
The Bulgogi Burger:
Bulgogi is a Korean meat dish which involves marinating beef in a salty-and-sweet mixture of soy sauce, garlic, sugar and sesame oil and cooking over an open flame. This recipe borrows a few traditional American burger essentials like eggs and breadcrumbs to help shape the meat into patties, then piles each burger high with hot-and-spicy kimchi (a signature Korean fermented cabbage dish).
At first glance, Muu-Muu’s burger on a baguette just looks like an elongated burger stuffed with fries—but we like to think of it as an homage to the low-brow American obsession with stuffing sandwiches with just about anything made of potatoes (chips, mashed spuds, etc.) in hope of creating the perfect bite.