The Best Order to Stack Your Burger Toppings

A study conducted by Cornell University found that the order in which you add your toppings to a burger affects how much each ingredient tastes. Here is an infographic of what the best way to stack them on for maximum flavor:

The “burger toppings on top or bottom” is a question that has been asked for years. There are many opinions on the best way to stack your burger toppings, but this article will help you decide what’s best for you.


Using the appropriate meat and grilling technique are the two most important aspects of making a superb burger. However, after you’ve mastered the essentials, the structure of your burger may help to improve the flavor and overall eating experience. 

Many individuals build their burgers in whatever manner they like, and there’s no right or wrong way to do it. There are, however, methods to make it more or less probable that you’ll have troubles with wet buns, poor taste blending, and, most frustrating of all, escaping toppings; it’s not nice to have those toppings squirting and dropping out as you attempt to get your lovely meat sandwich into your mouth.

There are many different viewpoints on the ideal way to stack toppings on a burger. Everyone has their own way, as well as their own justifications for it. It’s a topic as contentious as deciding which are the best war films of all time.

That said, we’d like to contribute our two cents to the discussion, with a well-researched and field-tested case supporting the following as the best burger-building approach.

From the bottom up:

  • Bun on the bottom.
  • The first condiment on the menu. Combine your condiments (mustard, ketchup, mayonnaise, etc.) and divide them evenly across the top and bottom buns. This keeps the tastes distinct, avoids an excess of goop from dripping and squirting out as you eat, and provides a type of “mortar” on the top and bottom to keep toppings in place. If you’re using mayo, Alton Brown suggests spreading it on the bottom bun, as the fattiness will act as a barrier, preventing the bread from absorbing burger juices and becoming soggy.
  • Lettuce. The lettuce functions as a barrier above the bread, preventing the patty’s fluids from seeping into it and making it soggy. Keeping the lettuce away from the hot burger prevents it from withering and wilting, retaining its freshness. 
  • Tomato. Slippery vegetables like lettuce and tomato should be put under the burger rather than on top of it, since they are less prone to slide when employed as fundamental elements. Half of your toppings on the bottom and half on top of the burger stops it from becoming top-heavy and hence unstable, while the weight of the patties and the texture of its bottom surface assist maintain the tomato in place. 
  • Melted cheese on a burger patty. Cheese should be melted on top of the burger as it finishes cooking for the finest flavor.
  • Onions. The melted cheese that the onion is sitting on will help hold it in place. 
  • Pickles. Put your pickles within the onion rings, and the “walls” will protect them from falling out.
  • Second choice of condiment. The condiment will protect the onions and pickles from falling off the plate.
  • Top bun.

Learn the best method to hold your burger to keep the structure intact while you eat it; yes, there is a best way to do it as well – research has proved it! 


Ted Slampyak created the artwork.



The “how to stack a burger so it doesn’t fall apart” is a question that has been asked many times. In order to avoid the burger falling apart, you should put condiments on the bottom and toppings on top.

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