Build a Better Burger ®

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Everything Burgers

Explore Everything Burgers for information about America's favorite food icon, and discover details of our Build a Better Burger® Recipe Contest and Cook-Off. We hope that these pages help get your creative juices flowing for creating a burger worthy of capturing our $100,000 Grand Prize!

For inspiration, check out the winning recipes to see what grabbed the attention of the judges in past years, and learn about the creative cooks behind those recipes in our hall of fame.

Through the years, we’ve assembled an impressive array of notable culinary experts for our Cook-Offs, as evidenced in the brief bios of past judges. Meet this years panel of expert judges.

The history page provides brief summaries of each BBB since 1990, while the timeline tracks the history of burgers in America.

Finally, we offer suggestions for pairing wine with burgers and guidelines for making better burgers and creating winning recipes.

Call for Entries.

Good cooks from the northernmost reaches of Alaska and Maine to the sun-drenched shores of Hawaii and Florida—and all points in between—are invited to join in the fun of our annual search for America's best burgers!

The judges at BBB are always looking for highly creative recipes that are packed with flavor. You may choose to reinvent your favorite burger with exciting new toppings, turn the elements of a classic dish into a burger, show off an ethnic or cultural background, highlight the unique dishes or products of a region of the country, reflect your culinary travels, or surprise us with a completely new concept in burgers.

When we make burgers, we choose sustainable, organic, and locally sourced ingredients whenever possible, including humanely raised meats and seasonal produce, and we encourage you to do the same when you create your recipe entries. We also prefer recipes that are not overly complicated or costly to make.

Feel free to enter as many recipes as you wish, but before submitting or mailing them, please read this year’s rules very carefully.

If you’ve previously entered recipes to our contest that did not make it to the final Cook-Off, you may update and resubmit them, even if they appear on the contest site’s Burgerbase. If they’ve been published elsewhere, however, they are ineligible for submission.

Since BBB began in 1990, the creativity shown by innovative cooks throughout America has been impressive. We’re eager to see what’s offered for our consideration this time, and we look forward to welcoming ten of you to the BBB Cook-Off in Napa Valley and rewarding one of you with a check for $100,000!

James McNair
Honorary Chairman and Head Judge, Sutter Home’s Build a Better Burger®

Jeffrey Starr
Culinary Director and Executive Chef, Sutter Home Family Vineyards


Cook-Off Details

Once the ten Finalists have been notified and gone through the approval process, a complete Finalist Handbook will be send to each. All questions regarding travel, the entire event weekend, and specifics about how the Cook-Off day works will be addressed in the handbook.