In New Mexico is known for chile and most residents have an affinity for piquant peppers. The state question is “red or green.” In August and September, when the roasters fire up in parking lots statewide, there is a collective Pavlovian response as the pungent aroma of green chile wafts through the air, inducing a perpetual state of hunger.
New Mexicans who do not like chile are a minority, woefully out of place in a state where chile is on the menu for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Among the many ways to serve up chile, the green chile cheeseburger is New Mexico’s spin on an all-American classic.
Green Chile Cheeseburgers
All green chile cheeseburgers are NOT created equal. Whereas most of the national chains, like Burger King and McDonalds, offer Hatch green chile, their chile is usually wimpy and the portions are meager and inadequate. If you are looking for a chain restaurant with a legitimate green chile cheeseburger, Blake’s Lotaburger is the #1 choice, with locations statewide. Lotaburger is New Mexico’s (superior) answer to Texas’ Whataburger. However, Lotaburger hasn’t cornered the market when it comes to crafting the perfect chile cheeseburger.
I have always had an affinity for good diners and dives. In New Mexico, many of them are contenders when it comes to memorable green chile cheeseburgers. In fact, there are local purveyors of outstanding, chile laden burgers in virtually every community.
Where Locals Go For A Chile Cheeseburger
Rather than attempting to create a Top 10 list, I listed my favorites and solicited people following New Mexico Nomad on Facebook and Twitter for their suggestions. The interactive map below represents the crowd sourced buffet of burger recommendations.
I will be updating this map periodically based on feedback. Please shout out your favorite in the Comments section below.
Caveat: If I haven’t tried the restaurant, I will check for additional reviews.