Arkansas may not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of mouth-watering burgers, but you'll be pleasantly surprised to know that the state has its fair share of incredible burger joints to visit. In fact, we're on a mission to find the best burger in Arkansas. Join us as we delve into the history of burgers in Arkansas, explore the different types of burgers, and check out the top 10 burger joints in the state.
the history of burgers in arkansas
Burgers have been an American staple for over a century, and Arkansas has played its part in shaping burger culture in the country. In the early days, burgers were simple and basic, consisting of a beef patty, lettuce, tomato, and ketchup. However, as time went by, the Arkansas burger scene evolved, with more ingredients being added, sauces being created, and unique takes on the classic burger being developed. These changes have led to an explosion of fantastic burger joints sprouting across the state, and today, Arkansas is home to some of the best burger places in the country.
One of the most famous burger joints in Arkansas is the Cotham's Mercantile in Scott. This restaurant has been serving burgers since 1917 and is known for its famous Hubcap Burger, which is a massive burger patty that is so big it hangs off the sides of the bun. Another popular burger place in Arkansas is David's Burgers, which has several locations across the state. David's Burgers is known for its fresh, never frozen, beef patties and its homemade buns. The restaurant also offers a variety of toppings, including bacon, avocado, and jalapenos, to name a few.
exploring the different types of burgers
When it comes to burgers, there are many different types to choose from, each with its unique twist. Some of the most popular burgers in Arkansas include the classic cheeseburger, turkey burger, mushroom burger, and veggie burger. Additionally, you'll find interesting, off-the-menu specialties like barbecue burgers, bacon-wrapped burgers, and even fried chicken burgers.
One of the most unique burgers you can find in Arkansas is the peanut butter burger. This burger is made with a juicy beef patty, topped with creamy peanut butter, and served on a toasted bun. It may sound strange, but the combination of savory and sweet flavors is surprisingly delicious.
If you're looking for a healthier option, many restaurants offer lettuce-wrapped burgers or bunless burgers. These options are perfect for those following a low-carb or gluten-free diet. You can still enjoy a delicious burger without the added carbs from the bun.
what makes a burger great?
There's no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as everyone's personal preferences vary. That said, a great burger is usually defined by the quality of the ingredients, the preparation method, and the overall flavor profile. A perfect burger patty should be juicy, tender, and cooked to perfection. The toppings should complement the patty without overpowering it, and the bun should be fresh and soft.
Another important factor that can make a burger great is the cooking method. Some people prefer their burgers grilled, while others like them fried or even baked. The cooking method can affect the texture and flavor of the patty, so it's important to choose the right method for your taste.
Additionally, the atmosphere and experience of eating a burger can also contribute to its greatness. Whether it's a casual backyard barbecue or a trendy restaurant, the ambiance can enhance the enjoyment of the burger. Eating a burger with friends or family can also make it a memorable and enjoyable experience.
the top 10 burger joints in arkansas
Now that we've covered the basics let's dive into the top 10 burger joints in Arkansas. In no particular order of preference, here's our list of must-visit burger hotspots:
- Big Orange
- Cotham's Mercantile
- The Faded Rose
- David's Burgers
- Big Whiskey's American Bar & Grill
- Groundhouse Burger
- Loca Luna
- Green's Corner Store
- Arkansas Burger Co.
- Flying Burger & Seafood
But wait, there's more! If you're looking for a unique burger experience, be sure to check out The Root Cafe in Little Rock. They offer a variety of locally-sourced, organic burgers with creative toppings like goat cheese and fig jam. And for those who prefer a plant-based option, The Veg in Fayetteville serves up delicious vegan burgers that even meat-lovers will enjoy.
how to make the perfect burger at home
Have you ever wondered how to make the perfect burger at home? Look no further than these handy tips:
- Choose high-quality meat.
- Season the patty well.
- Cook it to perfection.
- Choose toppings that complement the patty.
- Toast the bun for extra flavor.
But what about the type of meat you use? Ground beef is the most common choice, but you can also experiment with other meats like turkey, chicken, or even lamb. Just make sure to choose a meat with a good fat content to keep the patty juicy.
Another important factor in making the perfect burger is the cooking method. Grilling is a popular choice, but pan-frying or broiling can also produce delicious results. And don't forget to let the patty rest for a few minutes after cooking to allow the juices to redistribute.
the secret ingredients of famous arkansas burgers
Every great burger is built upon a secret foundation of ingredients that make it delicious. Here are some of the secret ingredients that famous burger joints in Arkansas use:
- Cotham's Mercantile - caramelized onions
- The Faded Rose - homemade chili
- Big Orange - truffle aioli
- Groundhouse Burger - roasted jalapenos
- David's Burgers - secret sauce
However, there are some other lesser-known burger joints in Arkansas that also have their own secret ingredients. For example, at the Purple Cow, they use a blend of ground beef and ground bacon to give their burgers a unique flavor. At CJ's Butcher Boy Burgers, they add a touch of peanut butter to their burgers, which surprisingly complements the savory flavors. And at the Ozark Burger Company, they use a special blend of spices in their seasoning that gives their burgers a distinct taste.
vegan and vegetarian options at arkansas burger restaurants
If you're a vegan or vegetarian, you might assume that burger joints aren't for you. However, Arkansas has plenty of options for non-meat eaters too. Some of the best veggie burgers in the state can be found at Big Orange, The Root Café, and The House. For vegans, check out The Green Corner Store where you can order the vegan veggie burger, or Flying Burger & Seafood where they offer a Beyond Burger option.
Additionally, many burger restaurants in Arkansas offer vegetarian and vegan toppings for their burgers. At David's Burgers, you can order a veggie burger with toppings like avocado, grilled onions, and mushrooms. The Purple Cow also has a veggie burger option and offers vegan cheese as a topping. Don't be afraid to ask your server about vegetarian and vegan options, as many restaurants are happy to accommodate dietary restrictions.
the impact of social media on arkansas burger culture
Social media has played a significant role in shaping arkansas burger culture, with many restaurateurs using platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to showcase their food. Customers can now leave comments, reviews, and even pictures of their burgers online, which helps to generate buzz and attract customers to their restaurant. Additionally, social media has allowed for the creation of foodie culture, with bloggers and influencers helping to promote newfound burger hotspots across the state.
Furthermore, social media has also influenced the way burgers are prepared and presented in Arkansas. With the rise of food photography and viral food trends, restaurants are now experimenting with unique burger toppings and creative plating techniques to make their dishes more visually appealing. This has led to a new wave of burger innovation in the state, with chefs and cooks constantly pushing the boundaries of what a burger can be. As a result, Arkansas burger culture has become more diverse and exciting, with something new and delicious always on the horizon.
the future of burger trends in arkansas
It's hard to predict the future of burger trends in Arkansas, but one thing's for sure: we can look forward to continued growth and diversity in the state's burger scene. With an increasing focus on healthier food options and the rise of plant-based proteins, it's likely that we'll see a broader range of burgers that cater to different dietary needs. Perhaps we'll also see an increase in burger restaurants experimenting with local Arkansas ingredients like venison and bison.
Another trend that may emerge in the future of burger trends in Arkansas is the incorporation of global flavors and spices. As the state becomes more diverse, it's possible that we'll see burgers inspired by international cuisines, such as Korean BBQ or Indian curry. Additionally, technology may play a role in the future of burger trends, with the possibility of 3D-printed burgers or virtual reality dining experiences.
Despite these potential changes, one thing that is unlikely to change is the love that Arkansans have for a good, classic burger. Whether it's a simple cheeseburger or a gourmet creation, burgers will always have a special place in the hearts and stomachs of those in the Natural State.
a guide to finding hidden-gem burger spots in arkansas
If you're the type of person who likes to go off the beaten path, you'll be pleased to know that Arkansas is full of hidden-gem burger spots. Some of the best ones can be found in small, unassuming towns, so keep your eyes peeled for signposted burger joints. As a rule of thumb, the more basic and un-glamorous a burger place is, the more delicious the burgers tend to be.
One of the most popular hidden-gem burger spots in Arkansas is the Ozark Cafe in Jasper. This small town diner has been serving up delicious burgers since 1909 and is a favorite among locals and tourists alike. Another great spot is the Feltner's Whatta-Burger in Russellville, which has been serving up classic burgers and fries since 1967.
When it comes to toppings, many of these hidden-gem burger spots offer unique and creative options. Some popular choices include fried eggs, avocado, and even peanut butter. Don't be afraid to try something new and adventurous!
interviews with famous arkansas burger chefs
If you're curious about what goes on behind the scenes at some of the state's best burger joints, we've got you covered. We've sat down and conducted interviews with some of the most well-known burger chefs in the state, picking their brains on what makes a great burger, how they got started in the business, and any secrets they're willing to share.
During our interviews, we discovered that many of these burger chefs have a deep passion for their craft and take great pride in using locally sourced ingredients. Some even shared their unique recipes for creating the perfect burger, from the type of meat to the seasoning and toppings. We also learned about the challenges they face in the industry, such as keeping up with changing food trends and maintaining consistency in their menu items. Overall, these interviews gave us a fascinating glimpse into the world of burger making and the dedication it takes to create a truly exceptional burger.
a comparison of fast-food vs gourmet burgers in arkansas
While fast-food burgers may be convenient, they can't compare to the quality and taste of gourmet burgers. Gourmet burgers are made from high-quality ingredients and are usually prepared fresh, on-site. This results in a more flavorful and satisfying eating experience. Fast-food burgers, on the other hand, are mass-produced and often served cold or lukewarm. Additionally, fast-food burgers are usually higher in calories, fat, and sodium than gourmet burgers.
However, fast-food burgers do have their advantages. They are often cheaper and more widely available than gourmet burgers. Fast-food chains also offer a variety of options, such as vegetarian or chicken burgers, which may not be available at gourmet burger restaurants. Additionally, fast-food burgers are a quick and easy option for those who are short on time or on-the-go.
tips for pairing your favorite beverages with burgers in arkansas
A great burger deserves a great beverage to go along with it. Here are some recommendations for beverage pairings to elevate your burger experience:
- Beer - try a hoppy IPA to cut through the richness of the burger.
- Wine - a full-bodied red wine like Zinfandel or Syrah pairs excellently with a beef burger.
- Milkshake - a thick, creamy milkshake like chocolate or vanilla complements a classic cheeseburger well.
- Lemonade - a refreshing glass of lemonade is perfect on a hot day and goes well with virtually any burger.
However, if you're looking for something a little more unique, consider trying a craft soda or a flavored sparkling water. These options can add a fun twist to your burger experience and provide a refreshing alternative to traditional beverages.
For those who prefer non-alcoholic options, iced tea or a cold brew coffee can be great choices. The bitterness of the tea or coffee can balance out the richness of the burger, while still providing a flavorful and satisfying drink.
tackling the biggest and most outrageous burgers in arkansas
Finally, if you're feeling daring, why not attempt to take on some of the biggest and most outrageous burgers in Arkansas? These giant burgers are not for the faint of heart and often consist of multiple beef patties, tons of toppings, and enough calories to feed a small army. However, if you're up for the challenge, head over to Arkansas Burger Co. or Flying Burger & Seafood to try their 5-pound burgers or Loca Luna for their famous El Diablo Burger.
There you have it, folks - a comprehensive guide to the best burger in Arkansas. With so many options to choose from, you'll have to go on a few burger crawls to find your favorite, but it will undoubtedly be worth the effort. Happy burger hunting!