Six Pack: Veggie Burgers in Philadelphia

Travel + Leisure named Philadelphia the no. 2 burger city in all of America this year jumping up from last year’s paltry no. 22, and second only to Providence, Rhode Island, which, if we’re being honest, at less than 21 square miles barely counts as a city anyway.

So with that said, by my count that makes the City of Brotherly Love the best burger town in the US of A. So with cheesesteaks and burgers it looks like we’ve got the meat thing down. But what to do about our vegan brothers and sisters? Luckily, it looks like Philly is improving on this front as well, serving up killer veggie burgers at some of the same joints making our top meaty burgers. Even if you’re not a vegetarian, try one of these six options on for size. Who knows? Maybe you’ll convert. (But probably not.)

Scary Good Veggie Burgers in Fairmount

Kite and Key makes a fine bar but they serve more than just bar food. Their vegetarian patty is stuffed with all kinds of veggies, from carrots and green beans to sweet peas, corn, and onions. It’s like a cornucopia in your mouth, if you’re into that sort of thing, and all for just $10. Add a little horseradish mayo and Swiss cheese and you have a scary good burger perfect for hitting up after a trip to Eastern State Penitentiary.

Kite and Key (Fairmount)
1836 Callowhill Street
215-568-1818

On the Go with LOS

Lucky Old Souls‘ burgers are gaining quite a following and their winning formula extends to their veggie burger, too. The best part about hitting up LOS for any burger is their build-your-own option. Starting with their veggie patty for just $5.50 add cheeses like habanero cheddar or smoked blue for another $1 then add sour pickles or pickled tomatoes for $.50. Homemade burger sauces are on the house, so take advantage of the special LOS sauce next time you spot them at Love Park.

Lucky Old Souls Truck
Love Park every Wednesday 11am-3pm

Hip Veggie Burgers in the City

If you aren’t a fan of the whole chunky mixture technique of making a veggie patty check out HipCityVeg for lunch. Their classic veggie burger is made up of soy and grains to create a smoother, meat-like consistency instead of a mosaic of veggies. They do this traditional burger with lettuce, onion, tomato, ketchup, and Dijon mustard for $7.50 with a side of sustainability and 100 percent plant-based goodness.

HipCityVeg (Center City)
127 S. 18th Street
215-278-7605

Freedman-Approved Veggie Burgers

A few weeks ago Brian Freedman of Philadelphia Weekly checked out Spencer ETA Burger over at Drexel U. and found their veggie burger to be more than satisfactory, saying “the way it’s prepped makes it an absolutely solid option not just for vegetarians, but also for carnivores who want to dabble in slightly healthier dining.” I must agree, and the fact that you can turn any of Spencer’s nine topping-smothered burgers into a veggie option for just $8.50 makes the deal that much sweeter.

Spencer ETA Burger (University City)
227 N. 34th Street
215-222-1022

Garces’ Burger Kingdom Reigns Supreme

If you’ve ever seen the immense fan base following the Whiskey King Burger to the ends of the earth over at Village Whiskey then you can only imagine what Jose Garces can do with a veggie burger. The patty there is made of a black bean and lentil mixture which is then topped with guacamole and pickled red cabbage for $10, making it much easier on the wallet than the King. And don’t forget, the entirety of the Village Whiskey toppings list (and whiskey list, for that matter) is at your disposal.

Village Whiskey (Rittenhouse)
118 S. 20th Street
215-665-1088

An Untraditional Patty from Man’s Best Friend

At Good Dog Bar vegetarians can find another anti veggie-mosaic patty for their burger. Made mostly of lentils, brown rice, and bread crumbs, Good Dog’s edition of this dish is seasoned with cilantro, cumin, and scallions. Topped with curried mayo and beet chips or sans mayo for a vegan dish, $11 is a small price to pay for a good vegetarian meal surrounded by adorable pictures of Fido.

Good Dog  (Center City)
224 S. 15h Street
215-985-1918

 

  • J

    Left out the best veggie burger in the city – national mechanics.

  • Jeeves

    Agree – National Mechanics makes the best veggie in the country….

  • Food Foodie

    Third that — National Mechanics’s veggie burger is fantastic. Definitely errs on the side of veggies more than burger, but that’s what I like about it.

  • Kate

    Also Memphis Taproom. Their veggie burger is great. In fact, all of the vegan food coming out of that kitchen is top notch.

  • gale

    until a burger boasts mostly seitan, I’m boycotting. Seitan is the king of all things non-animal.

  • steve

    I am not a vegetarian but I can appreciate a good veggie burger. Jose Pistolas has a great black bean burger that is worth trying