Ready to take your burger game from good to out-of-this-world good? To make your backyard grill-out memorable, we’re breaking down ultimate burgers from bun to patty to toppings and sauce. We’re also sharing favorite Whole Foods Market products, like Animal Welfare Certified beef and peak-season produce, plus options for every eating style.
Use our burger builder to choose your ingredients, then make your grocery list and visit your nearest Whole Foods Market store to stock up.
Rule #1: Get creative. After all, the bun is the vessel that holds your patty and toppings. Stay classic with buttery brioche buns in our Bakery, or go light with crisp, sturdier lettuces like organic romaine or bibb. Yep, even portobello mushrooms can be a bun (grill them first).
Pro bun tip: Choose a “bun” that’s sturdy enough to support your patty and toppings, and not so flimsy that everything spills onto your plate (or lap). Because messes aren’t fun.
It’s what makes your burger, well, a burger. And whether it’s meat- or plant-based, the best patty starts with these top-quality ingredients from our Meat and Seafood departments, and beyond.
Follow these helpful buying tips to ensure the best flavor and texture for your patty, every single time.
It’s okay to be picky: All fresh beef, pork, chicken, lamb and turkey (except kosher turkey) in our Meat department is certified to meet 100+ animal welfare standards, while, like all food we sell, our plant-based patties contain none of the 150+ ingredients we ban from food
Know your beef: Ground beef can be a bit tricky to navigate since it’s available in different fat percentages. For juicy, flavorful burgers, choose ground beef that’s 15 to 20% fat and 80 to 85% lean.
We’re here to help: Not sure how much meat or seafood to buy? Ask your butcher or fishmonger — they’re here to make your trip easier.
The Cheese: Beef Burgers
While you can’t go wrong with melty sliced American cheese for beef or bison, try these favorite picks from our specialty Cheese department for something a little different.
The Cheese: Any Type of Burger
If red meat isn’t on the menu, check out some of our favorite cheeses for every type of burger from salmon to turkey to plant-based.
Level up your patty by topping it with vibrant fruits and veggies — the more color, the better! Stop by our Produce department for a rainbow of organic, peak-season or local options. Or find plenty of unique, produce-packed condiments like kimchi and sauerkraut in our Grocery aisles.
How do you transform fresh produce into flavored-packed burger toppings? Check out these delicious ideas:
Grilled Fruit: We love pineapple or peaches. Check out our How to Grill Fruit guide for helpful tips and pointers.
Quick Pickles: With just a few ingredients, nearly any fruit or veggie can become pickles. Plus, they add refreshing crunch and flavor to your burger. Try it with cucumbers, red onions or even peaches.
Every burger needs a knockout sauce, whether it’s herby, tangy, spicy or creamy. We’ve paired some of our favorite sauces and dressings with the burger type that they would complement best.
Pro sauce tip: Get more flavor and maximize coverage by serving your sauce as a dip. Fill up a ramekin or small bowl, grab your burger, then dip away!
The Side Dishes
For heartier burgers, we recommend refreshing, produce-packed sides. Whether it’s a big, bright salad or crisp, peak-season corn, it’s also an easy way to sneak more fruits and veggies into your cookout. Try these backyard-friendly recipes:
Want to save time?
Stop by your store for a selection of ready-to-eat salads, like our cult-favorite Smoked Mozzarella Pasta.
What’s a grill-out without the drinks? Whether it’s a glass of wine or something canned, we have you covered with burger-friendly picks:
Summer Wines: Check out our top warm-weather picks for the season from our expert Wine Team. From canned sparkling rosé to crisp whites, you’re sure to find something worth sipping.
Canned Seltzers and Cocktails: Raise the bar on backyard sippin’ with a unique selection of canned refreshers, hand-picked by our beverage experts.
Craft Beer: From crisp pilsners to session IPAs, most of the beer selection in any given store represents regional favorites. As experts on their local brews, that means you’re sure to find a unique, summer-ready brew to try.
Can’t decide what you’re craving? For inspiration, check out these Amped-Up Burger Combos for creative, outside-the-box ideas.
Must be 21+. Please drink responsibly.