Dubai’s Burger Wars

Over the Christmas holidays, BW and I packed our bags and headed off to Dubai. I know, I know, I’ve been frequenting there quite a bit recently and you’ll probably sigh at the next few Dubai posts BUT I’ve never been more fooded out (my own term for absolute gluttony) than on this trip, and I can’t wait to show you everything! Dubai has to be the marmite of the Middle East – you either love it or you hate it. Some say it has everything, others say its over the top, and me, well I say that it is the Disneyland of halal fooooood. I started it off with a quest to find the best burger.

So out of the numerous burger joints they have to offer, I was able to narrow it down to the three of the best and most recommended establishments, so without further ado I bring you Dubai’s burger wars 2015! For nostalgic purposes, I decided to include Hardees in this post as well.

All you burger snobs out there, don’t turn your nose up just yet – hear me out on this one! I know what you’re thinking: 1. it’s pure fast food – on level with mcdonalds, and 2. it isn’t a burger, but the roast beef sandwich at Hardees just brings back so many yummy memories that I had to mention it.

Hardees Roast Beef and Cheddar Meal
Hardees Roast Beef and Cheddar Meal

Lying between two soft buns are layers of hot roast beef slices topped with gooey liquid cheddar cheese. As you can expect, the beef wasn’t of amazing quality nor bursting full of gourmet flavour but it really is a classic sandwich, and the combination of the cheese and beef makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. The curly fries were cooked great with a good crisp on the outside and made a change to the usual straight cut fries.

This meal costs AED16 so approx £3. Not the most amazing burger/sandwich I’ve had but something different which deserved a mention.

Rating out of 10:
Food: 6
Service: 4
Atmosphere: 5
Total Avg Score: 5

Pork/Alcohol: N/N
Child Friendly: Y

Address: City Centre Mall in Deira

Burger Wars Contender 1: Elevation Burger
The newest chain out of the bunch, Elevation has gathered a respectable cult following with their burgers made of 100% pure organic Angus beef.

Elevation's Cheese Burger
Elevation’s Cheese Burger

I opted for their cheeseburger (for comparison purposes) which came with a single beef patty, melted cheese, pickles, tomatoes, their trademark sauce and lettuce. The first thing that came to my mind when I took a bite was that it tasted really fresh with each of the different flavours distinguishable from one another. The patty had a good amount of flavour and the cheese had been melted perfectly all over. It was then placed in a potato bun which had a great squidge to it and reminded me of Shakeshack.

Elevation's Fries
Elevation’s Fries

The fries are cut freshly every day onsite and double dunked into hot olive oil for frying so they have a yummy multiple crunch. I also decided to order some fire sauce on the side for dipping the chips into but turns out this innocent-looking green devil sauce was ridiculously spicy and I ended up diluting it with ketchup.

The total bill amounted to AED48 which is approx £9. Teeny bit pricey for what they offer but I guess their food is organic and freshly made every day so I can’t complain. I have to admit did feel a little bit less naughty after the meal, but sadly, that is what puts Elevation in third place – there wasn’t any of that greasy oomph I had been expecting. The flavour was there, but there was a certain lack of character that would have me craving the burgers once I was back in London. Sorry Elevation lovers!

Ratings out of 10:
Food: 7
Service: 8
Atmosphere: 5
Total Avg Score: 6.7

Pork/Alcohol: N/N
Child Friendly: Y

Address: Dubai Mall, Jumeirah Beach Road, Al Ghurair, Latifa Tower

Burger Wars Contender 2: Shakeshack
Seeing as I have reviewed this establishment before, please read my blog post here on them. From their potato buns to their delicious, mouth watering peanut butter milkshakes, Shakeshack has it all and has excelled in almost all categories. They really serve up some pretty solid burgers here.

Shack Burger
Shack Burger

You can expect to pay AED57 (approx £10.25) for a single shack meal.

Ratings (Out of 10)
Food: 8
Service: 6
Atmosphere: 7
Total Avg: 7

Pork/Alcohol: N/N
Child Friendly: Y

Address: Dubai Mall, Mall of Emirates, Mercato Tower, DXB International Airport

Burger Wars Contender 3: Fat Burger
A burger joint that has been overlooked by many in favour of Shakeshack or Elevation, yet I will always remain one of their biggest fans. Their menu is straightforward with the option of a single, double, triple or quadruple (!!) fatburger with a small choice of toppings.

Single Fatburger Meal
Single Fatburger Meal

A compact-looking single fatburger arrived which was stuffed to the brim with chopped lettuce, tomato, onion, relish, and a patty hidden in there somewhere with gooey melted cheese all over it. Instead of a mayo-based sauce that seems to appear in many burgers, Fatburger rely on their trusty relish which adds a somewhat sweetness and has an element of cinnamon. The bun wasn’t brioche but was still pillowy soft and was able to withstand all the juices coming from the burger.

Single Fatburger
Single Fatburger

The patties could have been served a little thicker and maybe next time I will ask them to go easy on the salad, but I WILL be going back.The total bill amounted to AED47 (so approx £8,45) which was pretty pricey considering this was just fast food but this seems to be the new norm.

Ratings (Out of 10)
Food: 8
Service: 6
Atmosphere: 6
Total Avg: 6.7

Pork/Alcohol: N/N
Child Friendly: Y

Address: Dubai Mall, JBR, Mirdif City Center Mall

So which is really the best burger of Dubai? Must it really come down to Shakeshack or Fatburger? After much deliberation and more delicious testing, I have to say neither! as I think I’ve found somewhere better, juicier, and oh so much cooler. Is everyone excited???

My next post will reveal all, make sure to stay tuned!

For more Dubai restaurants, please click here to see my international directory or here to see my international map!

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Happy 2015!

  1. January 7, 2015

    Can’t wait to see the winner. Off to dubai this weekend and will be sure to check it out!

  2. Aamir
    January 7, 2015

    I am hoping it is somewhere in the UK! London would be even better.

    1. January 7, 2015

      Haha unfortunately London is too focused on opening up 500 halal “gourmet” burger joints that all taste the same!

  3. yusuf
    January 10, 2015

    I don’t see the americana burger from cheesecake factory on your list. Also, fudruckers, steakies etc all missing. Even the cheese burger at ihop is worthy. With the exception of shake shack, other burgers on your list above are average.

  4. Daniela
    March 13, 2015

    Hi. These Burgers look great. I am going to Dubai in April, what other restaurants are worth checking out? (any cuisines) It would be great to get some advice from you.

    1. March 15, 2015

      Salt burgers are the best by far in Dubai! For other restaurants in Dubai, please check out my previous posts on Dubai. Some notable ones are Cheesecake Factory, Coya, Zuma, LPM, Hakkasan, Nusr-Et, and Bice. Enjoy your trip!

  5. November 26, 2015

    Hardees … Definitely. I haven’t tried any burger at all the above restaurants, but Hardees Arabia is at its best.

  6. June 14, 2018

    Nice list of Dubai Burgers.
    Shakeshack is delicious and I think you could add cheese factory too here.

    1. HGAT
      June 28, 2018

      I do love Cheesecake Factory’s roadside sliders!

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