In-N-Out Is No Longer America's Favorite Burger

by Leah Groth ; Updated March 20, 2018

Five Guys Burgers and Fries is America’s favorite burger, but it isn’t exactly a low-calorie option.

In-N-Out has been knocked off the top spot as America’s favorite and most well-known burger brand. After trailing the California-based burger chain for two years, Five Guys Burgers and Fries now boasts top honors. But if you want to indulge in the United States’ preferred burger, it’s going to cost you — in calories, that is.

The Harris Poll market research firm recently released its EquiTrend Study, for which the company surveyed more than 100,000 Americans over the age of 15 and had them rate 4,000 brands online. This is the first year that Five Guys, which started out in Arlington, Virgina, in 1986, has been named number one.

Like In-N-Out, Five Guys prides itself on not using any frozen ingredients and making patties from fresh-ground beef. The chain also offers unlimited toppings and grills burgers in front of customers.

While In-N-Out only has locations in California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, Texas and Oregon, Five Guys is represented in every U.S. state, with the exception of Alaska. The chain has been rapidly expanding since 2003, when it opened its first location outside of Washington, D.C.

“The burger brand category has become less fragmented as regional brands expand and become available in more parts of the country,” explained Joan Sinopoli, vice president of brand solutions at the Harris Poll, in a statement. “This is certainly the case with Five Guys, which has shed its ‘small regional player’ designation.”

But when it comes to nutrition, how does Five Guys stack up to In-N-Out? A hamburger with onion, ketchup and mustard at In-N-Out contains 310 calories, while a similar concoction at Five Guys runs around 530. So plan on consuming 220 extra calories for the best burger of the year.

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If you’re in the mood for a double cheeseburger — also known as a Double-Double — with onion, mustard and ketchup, you are looking at 670 calories at In-N-Out and a whopping 836 at Five Guys (that’s 166 additional calories, for the record). Any additional toppings, including mayonnaise or In-N-Out’s trademark special sauce, will add to the damage.

Meanwhile, a small-size fries (227 grams) at Five Guys is 526 calories compared to 395 calories at In-N-Out (125 grams), which makes them pretty comparable in terms of calories per gram.

A burger is a calorie splurge, but one that’s definitely worth it from time to time. If you want to indulge in America’s favorite burger of 2017, just plan on putting in some extra time at the gym.

What Do YOU Think?

Have you eaten a burger at both In-N-Out and Five Guys? Which do you prefer? Would you choose one over the other based on nutrition alone, or would you let your taste buds make the decision for you?

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About the Author

Leah Groth is a writer and editor currently based in Philadelphia. She has covered topics such as entertainment, parenting, health & wellness for xoJane, Babble, Radar, Fit Pregnancy, Mommy Nearest, Living Healthy and PopDust.