The burger wars continue, as we dive in to the 2nd-part of our epic saga of the Austin Burger Almanac Series.  This time, we explore the raging battle that continues around our food crazed city, taking a small step in to the next phase of burger evolution. Those looking for a burger experience beyond the drive-thru, but not quite as expensive as a fine dining restaurant you’re in luck!  We’ve compiled a list of our favorite mid-budget, but well crafted burger joints generously scattered across the city.

Forget about vegan, paleo or gluten restricted diets (don’t worry, that list is coming soon), these beastly burgers are what cheat days were created for, yet not expensive enough to sacrifice your entire weekend budget.  Generally, you’ll spend between $8 – $14 for a burger, fries and soft drink, which is pretty affordable for most Austinites.  These bad-ass beef monsters are so big and beautiful you’ll feel like a baller on a budget, leaving you gut-busted and full.

Twisted Root Burger Co. | | @TwistedRootBurger

Founded in Deep Ellum in 2005 by owners Jason Boso and Quincy Hart, Twisted Root is relatively new to Austin.  The original location appeared on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives with Guy Fieri, and business hasn’t been the same since. With 9 other stores open throughout Texas and Louisiana where the lines often spill out the door, Twisted Root is making their presence well known in Austin with a gastro-family style atmosphere providing outstanding food, shakes, a full service bar on the patio, and even a small golf putting course for the kids, it’s fun experience for everyone. The beef patties, buffalo, elk, and other game meats in season—are thick, juicy and made to order.  Sides like the sweet-potato chips, deep fried green beans, fried onion strings and classic cut french fries are super fresh, making a perfect compliment to any burger lover.

Hot Tip: Fill up on the homemade Hidden Valley Ranch pickles! #Addicting #TrustMe

THE CALIFORNIA - Smoked Bacon, Pepper Jack Cheese, Guacamole, Fresh Lettuce and Vine Ripened Tomatoes

Smoked Bacon, Pepper Jack Cheese, Guacamole, Fresh Lettuce and Vine Ripened Tomatoes


Mighty Fine | @MightyFineATX

Established in 2007 in their hometown of Austin, Mighty Fine has made its mark with many loyal fans in the burger community.  Each location uses beef sourced from small ranchers are vegan fed, antibiotic and preservative-free.  Each burger is ground on-site and hand-formed right in front of every patron, guaranteeing 100% freshness.  The french fries are also hand cut from potatoes on site.  Mighty Fine may also be one of the most enjoyable burger spots to work for the employees as each visit is always filled with sounds of fun and teamworks proving to be an enjoyable experience for the employees and patrons.

*Four Area-wide Locations

The Beast.   Photo:


Moonies Burger | @MooniesBurger

What started as a simple outlet for serving great burgers in Cedar Park, Moonie’s has become the gourmet burger haven of North Austin.  Award winning burgers abound from 2008 til now, Moonies offers wide variety of mouth watering choices at each location, including Moonie’s Classics like the Hawaiian, The California, and the Blue Moon burger.

Each location is independently and locally owned – with each lending its own twists to the concept of the original. Freshly ground beef is delivered daily to each store and then formed into patties.  Produce is hand-cut in house with sauces and dressings. Each location fits perfectly in to the community without all shiny flair and flashy theatrics.  Moonies doesn’t hide their great quality with fancy signage or interior decorations.  In fact, each location just looks like a clean burger joint with great food, it’s that simple!  The amazing food and great service continues to make them a community favorite!

*Four Area-wide Locations

THE CALIFORNIA Smoked Bacon, Pepper Jack Cheese, Guacamole, Fresh Lettuce and Vine Ripened Tomatoes

Smoked Bacon, Pepper Jack Cheese, Guacamole, Fresh Lettuce and Vine Ripened Tomatoes

Phil’s Ice House | @PhilsIceHouse04

From the owners of Amy’s Ice Cream, Phil’s Ice House has become one of most popular burger joints in Austin.  The local favorite was named after Amy’s partner Phil Clay, who tragically passed away in 2003.  The original Phil’s Ice House, located on Burnet Rd., operated out of an old gas station originally opened in 1945 which echos in the classic ambiance the moment you walk in side.  Amy and Steve Simmons were looking for a shop that would compliment the great success of the ice cream shop.

Phil’s prize burgers are the Allandale Burger and the Brentwood Burger, both some of the most classic old fashioned burgers you’ll find stacked with house made beef patties, topped with cheddar cheese, sliced onions, sliced tomato, lettuce, pickles, mayo and mustard on a toasted sourdough bun. – See more at:

*Three Locations in Austin

The Allendale Burger -


Waterloo Ice | @Waterloo_Austin

The first Waterloo Ice House opened its doors on Congress Avenue in 1976.  It always been casual neighborhood gathering spot serving hot, handmade burgers, onion rings and ice cold beer,  making it one of Austin’s most familiar and favorite restaurants in town for almost 40 years.  All Waterloo Burgers feature the new Simply Essentials all-natural Black Angus Chuck, who’s cattle is fed a flax-based diet that naturally raises the omega-3 fatty acids in the beef and lowers cholesterol levels including favorites like the Texas Chili BurgerFarmhouse Brunch BurgerThe Works, and the Old Fashioned Cheeseburger. If you haven’t been to Waterloo Ice House in awhile, you’re missing out!

*Four Locations in Austin

Waterloo Ice house

FARMHOUSE BRUNCH BURGER – Topped with an over-medium egg, bacon, tomato and spring mix lettuce with roasted garlic aioli | $10.50


*Check out our top picks for the best fast food burgers in Austin HERE!