Proof that the burger is winning in the US

By CHD Expert

- Last updated on GMT

The greatest number of burger restaurants in the US can be found in California
The greatest number of burger restaurants in the US can be found in California

Related tags: Hamburger, Burger king

Americans love a good steak, but they crave a good burger. So which state dominates the burger industry? Texas would be the likely guess, but it would be the wrong one.

Here are the contenders...

If you’re out west, and you want a burger, head down to California, but if you’re in the south, you might consider Mississippi. Almost 12% (11.72%) of Mississippi’s restaurants are burger joints. That is the most dense burger percentage of any state.         

Of course, market saturation is not necessarily the best metric for quality. If a privately owned burger stand is more your taste, then hopefully you have enough fuel to make it to Washington State. Just under 27% (26.61%) of its burger restaurants are independent. That ranks them number one in the US for independents.                        

The US is moving a lot of beef via the burger industry. In fact, burger restaurants only come in behind pizza and variety menus, as the number three restaurant menu type.    


To get the facts on burgers we collected data from CHD Expert, a Chicago-based restaurant database and analytics firm. CHD Expert is a global company specialising in collecting, managing and analysing foodservice marketing data.

Here are more burger stats from 2014:      

• The average annual unit sales for burger-menu restaurants is $1,488,448

• 49,000 US restaurants are burger joints

• 13.89% of those are independent

• 86.11% are part of a chain (10 or more units)

• There are roughly 1.6 burger restaurants for every 10,000 Americans

• Burger joints account for 7.4% of all US restaurants

• About 8.7% of the total, or 4,250 burger restaurants, are classified as "fast casual" (the upscale burger joint)

• The fast-casual segment’s share of independents (45.14%) is much larger than for the overall market (13.89%)

Thetop five most dense burger states:

• Mississippi (11.72%)

• New Mexico (11.62%)

• Alabama (11.44%)

• Kentucky (11.36%)

• Oklahoma (11.03%)

The top five independent burger locations:

• Washington (26.61%)

• California (26.32%)

• Alaska (25.68%)

• Hawaii (25.54%)

• Washington, DC (22.62%)

The greatest number of burger restaurants can be found:

• California (6,104; 26.32%)

• Texas (5,553; 19.9%)

• Florida (2,728; 11.66%)

• Ohio (1,850; 5.95%)

• Illinois (1,846; 10.94%)

Biggest chains ranked by market share: 

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• McDonald’s (34.3%)

• Burger King (15.4%)

• Wendy’s (13.9%)

• Sonic Drive-Ins (8.2%)

The beef industry will benefit greatly from the popularity of the burger. With healthier and more creative menu options, burger restaurateurs are working to keep the burger fresh and relevant. For more information about the burger restaurants in the US, please contact the restaurant database experts at CHD Expert​.

Related topics: Meat

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