I’ve had a few people tell me this, and it has crossed my own mind a few times: Everyone has a list of cheeseburger deals in the Twin Cities, but it’d be nice if someone listed them by day so I knew where to go when.
Well, that’s where this list comes in. You might not have known, but I doubt it will surprise you, that you can get a great cheeseburger at a pretty good price every night in the Twin Cities. No more wondering. It’s all* right here, in a handy day-by-day format.
A couple of things to keep in mind:
Defining “deal”: A deal is whatever I say it is, but we’re generally talkin’ $6 or less. There are some really good burger-and-beer specials and a couple of buy-one-get-one deals push into the $10-12 range, and I think they’re worth bringing up. However …
They don’t necessarily have to be deals. If your cheeseburger is $6 or less every night, and it’s good, I’m sure as hell not going to hold that against you! Some of these are everyday prices, others are happy hour specials, and they’re categorized as such. The main thing is that it tastes good, because I don’t operate like those full-time listicle hacks. If it’s on this list, it means …
I’ve had cheeseburgers from all of these places, and I am recommending them to you. None of this “regurgitation of Yelp reviews, with a photo credit to some rando” bubkis. I’m not sending you anywhere without certifying it first. Keep that in mind, because …
If I missed one, tell me! I’m aware of a few I need to have still, and this is meant to be a living document as I make my way around. It’ll be updated as more are discovered.
Let’s get started.
What time: All day
If you’re one of those friend-having types, snap a picture of one doing something stupid and blackmail his or her ass out to Plymouth with you one Sunday. In addition to running happy hour all day – which means $3 spicy Bloody Marys and $7 blackened wings, yo! – burgers are buy-one-get-one-free on Sundays. Since their most expensive one is $12, BOOM! $6 and $6. Just imagine that brown sugar bacon and smoked cheddar burger, then picture it next to a black and bleu burger with grilled onions and Cajun Remoulade. Very few folks can play with fire the way Grizzly’s can.
You’ll have the added bonus of stumbling upon what’s quietly one of the Twin Cities’ best beer programs, and oh: at happy hour, craft taps are $2 off. Get your friend going with a Bloody Mary or two, move on to those big ol’ stouts, and get your camera ready. (Read more!)
Burger Moe’s, St. Paul
What time: 4 p.m.-midnight
You know that Buffett song “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” right? He didn’t write it about Monday nights at Burger Moe’s, but he could’ve! One of St. Paul’s most paradisaical patios and wide-ranging craft beer selections get flanked on Monday nights by a $6 burger special. Almost every burger on the menu gets knocked down to $6. It’s been a hot minute since I’ve stopped in, but if the Axtell Burger is as good as I remember? When is the last time a place called Moe’s let you down? It doesn’t happen on The Simpsons and it won’t happen here.
Call ahead, though: the offer is void on XCel Energy Center event nights.
Half Time Rec, St. Paul
What time: 4-9 p.m.
Bar to the left, stage to the right, kitchen in the back, bocce in the basement. Half Time Rec might just be the perfect bar, and now they’ve got a burger bargain to boot. They run $6, and I hope I don’t have to explain “Build Your Own Burger.” I haven’t done the BYOBurger, but I’ve had enough Paddy Burgers to slide my imaginary poker chips out for them. They’re also a past Twin Cities Burger Battle winner. Think of it like sports: If you stop at Half Time, you won’t lose! (Read more!)
Lakes Tavern and Grill, Woodbury
What time: All day
I wrote two days ago at length about the Best Burger Ever and taking in Dolphins games at Lakes, and guess what? If the Dolphins are on Monday Night Football, I’ll be having two of them for the price of one. What, you don’t think I could finish them both?
Modist Brewing Co./The Curious Goat, Mpls. North Loop
What time: 4-6 p.m.
Modist Brewing and the Curious Goat are in every “best-of” discussion concerning breweries and food trucks, respectively, and you get them in one place! This is bigger than Steph Curry and Kevin Durant. This is The Mega Powers, and you can have the best of both worlds for $10 on Tuesdays. You get a pint of your favorite Modist beer – and how are they not all favorites? – and a cheeseburger with so much flavor and so few ingredients, it can be genuinely confusing at times.
To top it all off, your burger will probably be delivered by Curious Goat owner Ian Grey and his gorgeous blue eyes. Tell me you couldn’t see him on the cover of a steamy novel.
Augustine’s, St. Paul
What time: All day
This burger is $7 by itself, but you can slide a Fulton Standard next to it for only $3 more. These are the same folks behind The Happy Gnome – and, more specifically, The Happy Gnome poutine. They play their creamy, protein-packed deck once again for their signature burger – and again it wins convincingly. With cheddar beef, white cheddar cheese, beer mustard, and a French fry payload that could stress a Tonka truck out, you’re getting more than a meal’s worth. I don’t recommend this at lunch time, unless you hadn’t planned to be productive in the first place. Clean this plate and it’ll be the last task you finish all day. (Hear more!)
On a side note, check out this link. Can you believe that?! Kohl’s hasn’t gone out of business!
Bar Louie, Uptown/Minnetonka
What time: 5 p.m.-close
The Bar Louie in the Ridgedale Mall (where I went) offers up half-pounders for $5 with tater tots of French fries. My tater tot portion was pretty sad, not gonna lie, but the burger more than made up the difference. Tuesdays mean long lines at Louie, though, unless you can squeeze into a seat at the bar. Whatever. Just come with a full phone charge and you’ll get some serious Angry Bird leveling done.
Speaking of birds, Louietonka’s also got patio seating. This means you can choose between judging shoppers based on the bags they’re carrying out to their cars or judging them based on what they’re wearing inside at the bar. Variety is truly the spice of life.
What time: All day
The first thing you need to be aware of is Tinucci’s closes up shop at 8:30 p.m. For this burger, though, I will absolutely call ahead – from I-694, going through Brooklyn Park, at 8:12 p.m. – and see if they’d be kind enough to make me a burger if I get there right at 8:30. They will! They are so accommodating, and so polite, that you will unleash absolute havoc on the Interstate so their kindness isn’t for naught. You will cut off a Peterbilt as you change lanes. You will nearly sideswipe a boat trailer. You will fit your car into places you wouldn’t normally try placing a whiteboard eraser, all in the name of a Tinucci’s $2.50 cheeseburger.
If you’re like me, you pay the extra for bacon and fried onions. Maybe you pay $3 more for a bottle of Michelob. This classic, no-BS meal runs me only $8 total. Your lead foot won’t get any lighter, but that’s a good thing. I mean, what if you need it next Wednesday?
Cowboy Jack’s, multiple locations
What time: All day downtown; 5 p.m.-10 p.m. all other locations
Yeah, yeah, ham it up, hucksters. The joke’s on you if you’re skipping Cowboy Jack’s Wednesday night burger deal. TWO BUCKS! It’s big, too, and the quality will far surpass what you would’ve gone in expecting. This isn’t just a cheap fill-me-up. I always leave happy, and the people I come with always leave happy.
Toppings are extra, yes, but you can still get a bacon ($1 extra) cheese (.50 extra) burger for $3.50! You can’t even get that at Wendy’s anymore, can you? It begins at 5 p.m. at most locations, but the Downtown location runs it all day. If you show up during happy hour, now you’re having that and Lift Bridge’s special Cowboy Jack’s IPA for under $6 total. Think what you want about the loud music, or the people you sometimes see walking out after last call. On a list of cheeseburger bargains, you simply can’t keep Cowboy Jack’s off. (Read more!)
Axel’s Tavern, Loretto
What time: 5 p.m.-close
I’ve already talked about how Loretto isn’t that far out of the Twin Cities. If you happen to be on the west side anyway, you can skip out here for a Juicy Lucy and a pint of Grain Belt for $9 – the only way you get more Minnesotan than that is if you spend 25 minutes saying good-bye to the bartender. Look at that patty! It looks like a damn curling stone. That’s because Loretto cheese portions are much, much different than Twin Cities cheese portions. It’s been a long time since I’d seen that much cheese come out of a burger patty.
HAPPY HOUR SPECIALS AND EVERYDAY PRICES
What time: M-F, 3-6 p.m. and 8-10 p.m. winter/9-11 p.m. summer; Sat. 1-6 p.m.; Sunday all day
If you can’t make it for 6Smith’s weekly Fat Pants Friday monstrosities, their happy hour menu is a calorie playground that comes around more conveniently. You can start your weekend with the early happy hour (3-6 p.m.) or hit the late happy hour (8-10 p.m. once winter hours set in). Within the drink specials and snacks awaits an unassuming double cheeseburger with PLO (pickles, lettuce, onions) and special sauce for $6. Speaking of special, PLO is one of the most underrated acronyms out there right now. It might not be in the penthouse with “DIAF”, “GG”, and “FOH”, but it’s miles “FWIW” and “IDK.” (Read more!)
Hey, I never said the burgers had to be big! Think of Constantine’s $5 bar burger as the Ant-Man of cheeseburgers. It comes in pretty sweet armor, and has power beyond its weight class. Nice, soft bun; gooey, melted cheese; and a slick of beef that straight-up satisfies. Be warned: get too starstruck, you’ll have that sequel bankrolled before you know what happened. (Read more!)
Lions Tap, Eden Prairie
It’s easy to forget about a classic like Lions Tap with new restaurants and “Instagram-worthy” food clogging the ol’ social meeds, but Lions Tap will be chugging along long after the new hotness has fizzled and died. That’s how classics become classics, and classics have an uncanny knack for serving up top-notch food at bargain-basement prices. Lions Tap is a prime example: all of their single-patty burgers go for $6 every day, and even the towering doubles don’t go above $10. I say Saturday because it’s located in Eden Prairie, and that’s a day trip for some. Being real, though, if you don’t think you have time for Lions Tap, it’s time to rethink your priorities. (Read more!)
Mickey’s Dining Car, St. Paul
I last had Mickey’s in January 2016. At that time, a half-pound burger was $5. Unless they suddenly decided to “chef up” their menu (go in one day and ask if they’ll do that, I dare you!), let’s assume their prices haven’t changed much since then and their grill surface has only been cleaned once or twice. It’ll be a great deal, and that’s even before you probably get a free pancake because too many were made on accident. If you can get your party into a booth, unlucky you! The real Mickey’s experience is had at the counter, where the cooks are just as likely to tell you off for no reason as they are to whip up a simplistic yet mind-blowing meal. (Read more!)
Both likelihoods are 100-percent, if you’re wondering.