Aug 15, 2023 - Food and Drink

Best smash burgers in Northwest Indiana

Burger with patty coming out of bun, sitting on wax paper.

Schoop's burger. Photo: Monica Eng/ Axios

I was recently driving hungry through Northwest Indiana when I remembered that "The Region" is famous for delicious smash burgers.

What happened: I put it to the test. After scanning several lists, I picked the top three contenders to battle it out.

Schoop's Hamburgers

Despite being a chain with more than a dozen locations, the Schoop's in Highland offers a friendly local feel and a super burger ($8.99) with a nice sear, fresh bun and tasty condiments.

Rating: 7/10.


Burger cut in half with inside of one half showing shredded lettuce, mustard and tomatoes.
Burger and fries from Miner-Dunn. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

Opened in 1932, the quaint diner still cranks out tasty "Real Hamburgers" ($5.99) with traditional ketchup, mustard, relish and onion toppings.

  • Even the lettuce and tomato I mistakenly ordered couldn't hide the juicy flavor and crispy sear on this excellent burger.

Rating: 7/10.


Burger with melted cheese on pretzel bun, surrounded by French fries in a styrofoam box.
The Santiago Burger at Burgerhaus in Schererville, Indiana. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

Despite its NW Indiana roots (with locations in Valparaiso and Schererville), this burger defies local tradition with a big, juicy, non-smashed prime patty and global toppings.

  • On my server's recommendation I tried the Santiago Burger ($17) with avocado, tomato, butter lettuce, chipotle Monterey cheese, chipotle mayo and fried jalapeƱos on a pretzel bun.

Rating: 8/10.

Confession: My actual favorite smash burger comes from a joint called "The Region" in, um, Roscoe Village.

Burger with sauce, pickles, overflowing from bun, sitting in wax paper in a red basket.
Burger from The Region in Roscoe Village. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

Featuring crispy edges, a soft bun and mayo-based Region sauce, this is a burger ($9.50) worth coming home to.

Rating: 9/10.


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