Travel a Little Further For These Great Burgers Just Outside Seattle

The amazing El Portal Burger at Doc’s Marina Grill. Photo credit: Marketeering Group.

The amazing El Portal Burger at Doc’s Marina Grill. Photo credit: Marketeering Group.

A great burger is a magical thing. When it’s perfectly cooked (medium, at about 5 ½ to 6 minutes per side in my opinion), piled with fresh toppings, and stacked so high you have to strategize the first bite, a great burger is worth a bit of a trek. 


With a commitment to fresh (not frozen) beef and handmade burgers, the Burger Broiler in Tacoma is a top-notch joint for a burger on the quick. Their cheeseburger made the top of The News Tribune’s list of the best cheeseburgers in the Tacoma area, and for good reason! Not only is the beef fresh, ground daily and marinated in the Burger Broiler’s secret house recipe, the lettuce is hand-leafed, the onions are crispy fresh and the tomatoes are as juicy as they come.


The quirky little town of Port Townsend is just far enough away from the city to feel like you’re on vacation, but close enough to visit for a day trip. In addition to offering some excellent opportunities for antiquing and boutique shopping, the town is the destination for the second location of Doc’s Marina Grill (a local and tourist favorite on Bainbridge Island for more than a decade). Doc’s “El Portal” burger is truly a portal into the wonderful world of great burgers. At its core is ½ pound of all natural beef, cooked to a perfect medium. The spicy bite of smoked habañero compliments blue cheese in the flavorful sauce on this burger, which is piled high with double smoked hickory bacon, pepper jack cheese, fried onions, lettuce, tomato, and onion.  


Welcome to Burger Country - that’s exactly what you’ll experience at Nick’s Jr. Burgers (and gyros!) in Everett. The amazing Nick’s Deluxe is a must-try for all burger lovers, with two ¼ pound 100 percent fresh ground beef patties, richly grilled mushrooms, onions, two cheeses (cheddar and Swiss), hickory bacon, avocado, lettuce, tomato, pickles and Nick’s housemade garlic mayo all on a sesame bun. Yum!


Sometimes you just have to make a sacrifice of your waistline for a burger at that amazing hole-in-the-wall local joint. Scott’s Dairy Freeze in North Bend is the ideal spot for a bite after a long hike or a visit to the iconic Snoqualmie Falls. Scott’s offers the classic burgers, fries and shakes combo. Although their burgers are hardly the gourmet delicatessen type, they sure hit the spot.


Head out to the wine country of Western Washington to visit Teddy’s Bigger Burgers in Woodinville, where the rule is ‘go big or go home’. Each burger is made to order with fresh ingredients between the ends of that fluffy potato bun. Although I recommend their specialty burgers, particularly the Kilauea Fire and the Bacado, Teddy’s Original Burger is a must for first-timers to the bigger burger phenomenon. The patty is 100 percent ground chuck steer beef flame-broiled to medium and topped with Teddy’s gourmet seasoning, homemade teri and special sauces, fresh ripe tomatoes, thinly sliced sweet white onion, Claussen dill pickles, and green leaf lettuce. You’ll definitely need some analysis to plan your first bite with this monstrosity of deliciousness.

Photo credit: Stephanie Forrer.

Photo credit: Uneeda Burger.

And if you can’t catch a ride that far out of town, there’s always Uneeda Burger in Fremont to satisfy your burger cravings locally!