Farm Progress

Iowa’s Top 10 burgers announced

Ten restaurants are in the running for Iowa’s best burger in 2018.

April 6, 2018

2 Min Read
BEST BEEF: After tallying nearly 10,000 votes from Iowans, the Iowa Beef Industry Council and Iowa Cattlemen's Association have determined the Top 10 Burgers in the state for 2018.

Iowans submitted nearly 9,200 nominations between Feb. 12 and March 12 to begin the quest to find the best burger in Iowa. Nominations were accepted online by the Iowa Beef Industry Council and the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association. The number of votes each restaurant received determined the 2018 Top 10 restaurants.

Those making the Top 10 list this year (in alphabetical order) include:
 BurgerFiend, Cedar Rapids
 Cafe Beaudelaire, Ames
 The Iowa Stater Restaurant, Ames
 Moo’s BBQ, Newton
 Morgan’s Corner, Ottumwa
 Rides Bar & Grill, Fort Dodge
 Robin’s Nest Cafe, Clarinda (formerly Vaughn’s Cafe and Bakery)
 Saucy Focaccia, Cedar Rapids
 The Twisted Tail Steakhouse, Logan (BeeBeeTown)
 Wrangling Grace Cafe, Bancroft

Iowa’s 27,000 beef producers
"Iowa has over 27,000 beef producers, and this contest is a great way to celebrate the beef they produce and the impact they have on Iowa," says Katie Olthoff, director of communications for the Iowa Cattlemen's Association.

To qualify, the burger must be a 100% beef patty or patties, although other ingredients may be added such as spices, and served on a bun or bread product. Burgers may include any combination of condiments, sauces, cheese or toppings.

“We moved all of the voting to online this year and set a new record with over 700 restaurants receiving at least one nomination,” says Brooke German, director of marketing for the Iowa Beef Industry Council. “In total, we had over 300 towns and cities across Iowa represented, which proves there are a lot of great-tasting burgers all across the state.”

Over 700 restaurants nominated
Seven restaurants are new to the contest’s Top 10 list. They are BurgerFiend, Cafe Beaudelaire, Iowa Stater Restaurant, Moo’s BBQ, Morgan’s Corner, The Twisted Tail Steakhouse and Wrangling Grace Cafe.

Returning contestants include Ride’s Bar and Grill, Robin’s Nest Cafe and Saucy Focaccia.


The quest for the winner of the Iowa’s Best Burger now begins. All Top 10 restaurants will be visited by a panel of anonymous judges who will evaluate the burgers based on taste, appearance and proper doneness (160 degrees F). The judges’ scores and comments will be accumulated, and the winner will be crowned May 1.

“We encourage everyone to visit the Top 10 restaurants,” German says. “These are only a few of the many restaurants in Iowa that do an outstanding job of promoting and serving our beef product to their customers on behalf of Iowa’s beef farmers.”

Last year, The Smokin’ Hereford BBQ of Storm Lake took home the title of the 2017 Iowa’s Best Burger.

To learn more about the contest and the Top 10 restaurants, including addresses and hours, visit

Source: ICA and IBIC

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