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Best Burgers in Asheville—A Local's Perspective.

What is the most American thing you can think of? Is it Ohio? Health insurance? A cowboy prospecting for oil on the moon?

All good answers, but in my opinion, its the humble hamburger. Its not just about being the national dish. Its in the symbology.

You can get burgers from fast-food chains. Prepackaged, regimented, reliable. You can get them from mom-and-pop diners, made with simplicity and care. You can get them with mustard, mushrooms, jam, or a fried egg. You can even get a hamburger made of beans if you’re so inclined.

Hamburgers are adaptable, dense, and fundamentally straightforward, but above all else, they are vehicles of variation. And that’s what makes them so American: variety, in spite of apparent plainness.

Asheville is anything but plain, yet it embodies variety better than any city of its size. Yet with variety comes confusion, and it certainly complicates such matters as deciding what’s for lunch. To that end, I invite you to read on, and educate yourself concerning the best burgers while on vacation in Asheville, and where to find them.

Best Burgerin Asheville - three hamburgers with egg
Image from Wix

To start off, I’d like to introduce a restaurant that nails one of the most important tasks of a good burger joint: customization.

With ingredients ranging from ghost pepper-jack to chili, Burgerworx offers the opportunity to create whatsoever affront to veganism your heart desires. By the same token, one could also craft a purely vegetarian burger, or maybe forget about sandwiches altogether and enjoy one of Burgerworx’s premium milkshakes.

That right there is the power of variety, and its why—with a little ingenuity—one could not only find but fabricate the best burger in Asheville right here.

Hours: 11am to 7pm Monday through Thursday. 11am to 8pm Fridays and Saturdays. Closed Sundays.

Best Burger in Asheville - cheeseburger and fries
Image from Unsplash

Despite being a national chain, Farm Burger’s marquee might as well read “Asheville Burger.”

The ethos of “buying local” thrives in Asheville’s consumer industry, and Farm Burger does just that. The chain prides themselves in their partnership with local small-scale farms, where from they obtain their grass-fed beef and seasonal fare.

Speaking of stellar ingredient,, have you ever considered pork belly on your burger? How about roasted bone-marrow? Farm Burger for one has considered such things, and found them suitable for a menu embellished with offerings apparently pried from a gourmet cookbook.

In a final salute to Asheville’s food culture, Farm Burger also offers local draft beer, which can be had a-la-carte, or mixed with ice-cream. Such a slew of artisan foodstuffs makes Farm Burger one of the best chain-restaurants in town, as well as one of the best proprietors of burgers in Asheville.

Hours: Their south location is open 11am to 9pm, daily. Downtown, its 11:30am to 9pm.

Best Burger in Asheville - hamburger and fries
Image from Wix

I remember when Abjea’s first opened. I remember because it has been a staple of my weekly diet ever since.

One part hometown diner, one part Latin fare, and one part pure Asheville (kale, tempeh, etc.), Abeja’s skilled chefs provide a wide range of caringly-prepared dishes.

Whether I’m having breakfast, lunch, or one of the café’s inspired rotating specials, I have never been disappointed. It should come as no surprise that Abjea’s contends for the right to the best burger in Asheville.

Whereas other restaurants in this article may rely upon fanciful toppings to bring their burgers up to speed, Abeja’s relies upon good ingredients, and good cooking. Better yet, the café is a bastion for compromise.

Say, for instance, you want a hamburger, but the wife is feeling like a chicken wrap, whereas your kids haven’t ventured far beyond the realms of pancakes and waffles. Just to complicate things, let’s say your in-laws are in town, ad they've declared a veto on anything that doesn’t rhyme with BLT. Well, in this hypothetical nightmare, Abeja’s can provide everything your party wants; you can have your cake and eat it too. Really, their cakes are quite good.

If such bold words have piqued your interest, I invite you to follow in my footsteps, and enjoy your burger with three cups of Guatemalan coffee. However, I bid you beware of the Sunday brunch crowd. They are numerous, and each as avid as the next for a taste of this café’s wonderful offerings.

Hours: 7am to 3pm, Tuesday through Sunday. Closed Mondays.

Best Burger in Asheville - cheeseburger fries and beer
Image from Unsplash

I am told that this iconic Ashevillean eatery takes its name from that famous “universal joint” known in engineering as a coupling unit that attaches two rotating shafts which may not be parallel but do intersect. That is to say:: it's a metaphor for community.

Nestled into the heart of vibrant West Asheville, I for one can think of no better name. The Universal Joint is a self-described “neighborhood restaurant,” a spot to connect with locals—whether you’re a resident or not—via the ancient mediums of shared food and televised sports.

Weather permitting, I suggest you take your meal out onto their dog-friendly patio. Fresh air will fortify you to tackle such delicacies as their spicy egg rolls with mango chutney, cheese curds, and of course, the eponymous “U Joint Burger,” furnished with bacon, jalapenos, and ranch.

As far as libations, the Universal Joint sports one of the largest drink-menus I’ve been acquainted with, and that’s saying something for Asheville. Local craft beers, import beers, wine, cocktails, Irish coffee; it's all right there.

To wrap it up: if you want one of the best burgers in Asheville alongside a dose of local community, look no further than the Universal Joint.

Hours: 11:30 am to midnight, Sunday through Thursday. 11:30 am to 1am, Fridays and Saturdays.

Best Burger in Asheville - hamburger and fries on plate
Image from Unsplash

Home Ground is just about as local as it gets, with food straight out of your grandmother’s kitchen (if she was from Asheville), and ingredients cultivated in the local community.

Therefrom comes an advantage in freshness and flavor. The décor follows the tenants of the rural Bohemian (eclectic tablecloths, mix-and-match chairs, etc.) and outdoor seating flows out of Home Ground's back door, straight on to an open-air firepit. While their menu boasts a wide selection of delectable dishes, if one seeks the best burger in Asheville, Home Ground may just be the summit.

Pair it with a healthy helping pommes-frites, and there you have it: one of the best burger's in Asheville. Go for a walk at nearby Carrier Park or the River Arts District afterwards. Your coronaries will thank me.

Hours: 7:30am to 2pm, daily.

Businesses Mentioned



1 Page Ave #132, Asheville, NC 28801

Farm Burger (Downtown)


10 Patton Ave, Asheville, NC 28801

Farm Burger (South)


1831 Hendersonville Rd #100, Asheville, NC 28803

Abeja's House Café


1550 Hendersonville Rd #116, Asheville, NC 28803

Universal Joint


784 Haywood Rd, Asheville, NC 28806

Home Ground Coffee Bar & Deli


219 Amboy Rd, Asheville, NC 28806


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