Local Vibes

Local Vibes

Local Vibes

Hunting for the best under the radar burgers in New Jersey is not an easy task unless you eat a lot of burgers and are willing to travel great distances to find them. I will occasionally travel to an out of the way town if the burger comes highly recommended.

 I love burgers! I’m always looking for recommendations from the folks on food sites, especially places that I’m not familiar with.

We all have our favorites. For instance, I love Burger 25, Frankie’s in Point Pleasant, and burgers from my favorite bars and diners. But what if I wanted to change it up?

In order to get a solid list of places that aren’t normally top of mind, I hit the internet and the request lines in my quest to find places that don’t get a ton of mainstream fanfare.

If I’m heading to North Jersey, I’d hit White Manna in Hackensack, a favorite among Jersey burger lovers. Then there’s Steve’s Burgers in Garfield, that big old beautiful burger dripping with cheesy goodness, topped with bacon, that delicious sauce, and a heavenly onion ring. Steve’s French fries alone are worth the trip from Toms River.  Those 2 well known places are high up on the burger list.

If you ask people, “What makes a good burger?” You’re going to get a variety of answers. It all depends on what kind of meat the burger is made with along with the preparation and finally, the cooking method.

This Jersey Shore Restaurant Just Topped My List Of Best Places

If someone were to ask me what my cooking method preference is, I would automatically say, “Flame grilled.” I love a burger cooked over an old-fashioned charcoal grill. I also love smash type burgers cooked on the flat top, and then there’s the good old cast iron skillet method which is kind of similar to the flat top. Those methods help form a nice crust which gives the burger great flavor. Let’s be honest, I’ll try just about any burger no matter how it’s cooked if it comes highly recommended.

I will occasionally eat a burger cooked on a grill that uses propane if that’s what the host of a backyard gathering is offering. The propane grill method is my least favorite way of cooking a burger. Unless the burger is well seasoned, I will avoid eating burgers cooked in that manner. It’s not the end of the world, but it’s not my favorite.

Let’s take a look at some places that have great burgers that I don’t often see or hear about. Here’s a list of 11 Under The Radar Burgers in New Jersey.

  • Cruz-Missile Hot Dogs & Pinchos - 73 Gregory Ave, Passaic, NJ 07055

    I hear far more about the hot dogs, especially the Snap-O-Razzo brand than I do about the burgers. Recently, I’ve been seeing photos and comments on how amazing the burgers are. According to some of the reviews, the Cruz-Missile Smash burger is the way to go. It’s two juicy 5-ounce angus beef patties on a toasted Martin’s Potato Bun with grilled onions, pickles, Thumann’s American cheese, bacon and their special Cruz Smash sauce.

    The Cuban sandwich also gets high marks and the chili has been touted as some of the best to top their Sabrett dogs.

  • Rock'n The Grill - 242 Rock Rd, Glen Rock, NJ 07452

    This hidden gem opened in Glen Rock a little over a year ago and lately, I’m hearing rumblings on how good the burgers are. The owners, Paul and Jennifer Apostolopoulos keep their signature recipes a secret so I am unable to tell you why their burgers are so good. Their menu features breakfast, lunch, and dinner, plus they have vegan and gluten-free options.

    All of their selections look very tasty but the one that caught my eye was, The Greek Burger with fries. Served on a pita with lettuce, tomato, red onion, topped with Feta cheese and tzatziki sauce.  

  • Lakeside Deli - 542 Bloomfield Ave, Verona, NJ 07044

    A deli isn’t the first place that comes to mind when I’m looking for a good burger. According to the locals, Lakeside Deli makes fantastic burgers and just about everything else. They’ve been in business for well over 50 years which says a lot. Their cheese burger is $7.49, and a bacon cheese burger is $10.99. They offer a variety of sandwiches, including vegan burgers,  Jersey Sloppy Joes, wraps, paninis cheesesteaks, and a nice offering of specialty grilled cheese sandwiches.


  • Sportsmans' Tavern - 245 Outwater Ln, Garfield, NJ 07026

    If you live on the Shore and are planning to head up to Bergen County, this little dive is a place you might want to stop for a good burger. This friendly neighborhood bar is loaded with colorful locals and good bar food at reasonable prices. I hear the steak is aces as is their signature Moon Burger, a cheese burger combined with Taylor Ham. Darts are a big thing at this local haunt as well.

  • One More Bar & Grill - 1375 US-206, Tabernacle, NJ 08088

    Their website reads: Just your local bar trying to get through the day like you, our loyal customers.  I love them already. The first things ever mentioned to me were the battered corn nuggets served with syrup and the Cordon Bleu Balls, which are breaded balls of chicken filled with ham & Swiss, and served with honey mustard dipping sauce. I was intrigued by such unusual items served at a local watering hole.

    These are a few finger foods you can order while waiting for your 7 ounce gourmet burger offered several different ways.  I like the looks of the Candied Bacon Burger topped with cheddar cheese. I’m also salivating at the thought of ripping into the Mushroom Swiss Burger.  They’ll be happy to accommodate you if you’re a vegan by substituting any burger with an Impossible Burger.


    One More Bar & Grill

    No Description


  • Super Stuffed Burgers - 529 S Springfield Ave, Springfield, NJ 07081

    How have I never heard of this place? They are a family-owned superhero themed burger joint featuring the best freshly made to order signature stuffed burgers, chicken sandwiches, hot dogs and milkshakes. For under $15, you can grab, The Fantastic 4 – a Burger stuffed  and topped with mac & cheese, and bacon.

    How about a breakfast burger they call, The Flash, it’s stuffed and topped with mild cheddar cheese, fried egg, bacon, house & spicy mayo. This looks like an awesome place.


  • CheeseSteak Louie's - 22 Boulevard, Seaside Heights, NJ 08751

    Anyone who lives for a killer cheesesteak on the Jersey Shore, knows that Cheesesteak Louie’s is absolutely one of the best you’ll ever have. But have you tried their burgers? If not, you are missing out on some the juiciest, tastiest burgers in Ocean County.

    Go for the Lou Lou, it’s 2 smash patties, sauteed onions, pickles, Cooper Sharp American cheese, and Lou Lou Sauce. If you want to know what Lou Lou Sauce is, take a ride to Seaside Heights. You’ll thank me. There are several other burgers to choose from as well as fresh cut fries and creamy shakes.

  • Kostas Grill - 161 E Main St, Tuckerton, NJ 08087

    I had heard about the great Greek food this place serves from one of the trainers at my gym. Then another member of my gym said that the burgers here are top notch.

    The Saganaki Burger is made with a fresh 8oz Angus patty, grilled eggplant, kefalograviera cheese. The one I’m honing in on is the Lamb burger, 8 ounces of ground lamb topped with tyrokafteri (spicy feta spread).

    They also offer classic beef burgers with your choice of cheese. Don’t forget to grab a piece of Baklava for dessert.



  • Portside Bar & Liquors - 369 NJ-36, Port Monmouth, NJ 07758

    This place had previously made my list of places to get one of the best burgers in the Garden State. Portside can only be described as a dive. Most hole in the wall joints that I’ve been to have some of tastiest food I’ve ever eaten. This is why you cannot judge a book by it’s cover.

    The locals will tell you that the food here is good, especially the burgers. The burgers and wings here are better than your average neighborhood bar.

    A good old bacon cheese burger, a side of fries, and a frosty cold beer is all you need to get through the night. The Hangar steak has also been mentioned as a winner on the menu. The prices won’t break the bank and you might meet a few new friends.



  • Fatty's Fat Snacks - 439 NJ-34, Matawan, NJ 07747 - Food Truck

    This is a fairly new food truck business run by a guy named Brandon Inguaggiato. I actually have no idea how his burgers are, but they sure do look good. I wanted to include Brandon & his crew after I saw a photo of his food on social media, and I wanted to shine the spotlight on a brand-new business. 

    You can find Fatty’s at the Aberdeen train station lot 3 Wednesday through Sunday 1pm to 7:30pm. Booking email fattysfatsnacks@gmail.com 732- 642 -2589. Wishing you love & luck, Brandon.

  • Barrier Island Burgers - 3564 NJ-35, Normandy Beach, NJ 08739

    This seasonal eatery is currently open Monday through Sunday 11:30am to 9pm. Smash burgers are their specialty. Grab your super juicy burger and enjoy it at one of the tables on their patio.  It’s great little place that serves more than just burgers. The Nashville Hot Chicken is another standout topped with chipotle mayo. If you’re going to Barrier Island Burgers for the 1st time, I suggest The Bib Burger, a double stacked burger topped with queso, pickled jalapenos, frizzled onions, and BIB sauce on a brioche bun.  Add a side of Cajun dusted sweet potato fries accompanied by your choice of hot honey or bourbon vanilla sauce. They have shakes, cereal infused ice cream and several other creative offerings. The service is friendly, and the people are passionate about the food they serve.

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