$9.50, Grad School, 434 S. Jefferson Ave., Springfield, 417-866-8163
Flavor Profile: Double patty with lettuce, tomato, caramelized onions, soft cheddar and bacon
The Dish: Like everything on the menu at Grad School, this burger is a no-fuss flavor bomb. It’s simple but delicious and includes all the key ingredients to make a fabulous burger, including plenty of meat. This double patty mamajama comes with two 4-ounce patties layered with lettuce, sliced tomatoes, extra-crispy bacon, caramelized onions and our favorite part: a spreadable cheddar cheese. Instead of using the classic cheese slice, the kitchen crew at Grad School coats the toasted white burger bun with a smear of sharp cheddar cheese that gives this otherwise simple burger a coating of velvety goodness. Combined with the sweet caramelized onions, this classic burger is quickly upgraded to delicatessen level.
Burger Buddy: Yes, you could settle for the standard side of fries that come with the Full Ride, but really, you should up the ante and sub in a bowl of Grad School’s homemade soup. Each day brings a new soup to the menu, but there’s almost always a vegetarian option and a meat-lovers option.
Instagram-Worthy Alternative: For a healthier meal that will still have you salivating, go with the mushroom steak sammy. Thick slices of sauteed portobello mushrooms are sandwiched alongside bell peppers, onion, avocado, provolone and crunchy alfalfa sprouts.