I’m in Houston, Texas, and what is a burger fan to do but visit both In-N-Out Burger and Whataburger? At least that’s what any self-respecting burger connoisseur would do.
During our road trip, Fred, Marcela, and I were only in Houston for a few days. While Marcela and I had eaten In-N-Out Burger and Whataburger before, Fred had tried neither.
Both Whataburger and In-N-Out Burger are regional burger joints; here’s the breakdown per restaurant:
Whataburger has locations in 14 states, with Texas (its home state) at over 700 spots and Florida (my home state) at 40. So the total amount of Whataburger restaurants nationally is right around 900.
In-N-Out Burger has locations in 7 states, with California (its home state) at 156 spots and Texas (the state we were currently in) at 40. The total amount of In-N-Out Burger restaurants nationally is 279.
We hit up Whataburger right upon our arrival in Houston for lunch; In-N-Out Burger would be dinner that same night.
Whataburger – Houston
We walked up to the counter; before we knew it, it was time to order. I’m always very prepared and knew what I was eating. Unfortunately, Marcela wasn’t ready as usual, and Fred was mesmerized by the menu.
We take our seats after ordering, and Fred chooses four different sauces for his fries while Marcela & I pick a handful of the Spicy Ketchup. The shoestring fries from Whataburger are great but not on the level of the iconic McDonald’s fries which are peerless.
Fred’s first Whataburger was double meat with all the fixings; Marcela chose the abomination of an Avocado Bacon Burger, and I went with the Jalapeño & Cheese double beef. I skipped out on the lettuce and tomato, so my fella had jalapeños, onions, pickles, mustard, and one slice of American cheese.
Everyone finished their burgers, but some fries were left strewn on or around their containers.
Whataburger uses fresh never frozen beef for their burgers. The 5-inch burger patty and buns that inspired the Whopper never disappoint. The Jalapeño Double Cheeseburger has become my go-to whenever I’m at the orange arch.
If I could change anything, I’d probably add a second slice of cheese cause that never hurt anybody.
In-N-Out Burger – Houston
They were packed, so we chose the In-N-Out drive-thru route. Coincidently, the first time I ate at In-N-Out was in the car after excitedly waiting in the fast-moving drive-thru.
There’s something about this sign that is exciting. So exciting, in fact, that I own one!
Marcela claimed she was sitting this one out, which spelled doomsday for little ol’ me. We all know I might as well accept that I’ll be enjoying half a burger and half an order of fries.
I’m no Nostradamus, but my prediction came to pass, so long tasty friends. She didn’t want any of my Coca-Cola, so there was a silver lining.
Both cheeseburgers and fresh-cut fries are ordered Animal-style, which means:
Animal-style Cheeseburger – Mustard-cooked burger patty with cheese, diced grilled onions, spread, pickles, lettuce, and tomato
Animal-style Fries – Fresh-cut fries covered in a melted slice of cheese, diced grilled onions, and spread
Since I don’t like to taint my burgers with filler, I skip the lettuce and tomato. Everything else on both meals was the same.
The taste of the Animal-style burger is reminiscent of a Shake Shack Double ShackBurger. I was this many years old when I realized I prefer my In-Out Burger with just cheese, grilled onions, pickles, and spread on a toasted bun.
The goopy mess that is the Animal-style fries are better without the melted cheese slice; trust me on this one. You don’t need to add cheese on everything, just on most things. This is not one of those things.
Learn from this BEAST’s mistake; more isn’t necessarily better.
P.S.: Fred pretty much inhaled his food; for one minute there, I thought he was gonna eat the wrapper too, 🤣.
Both iconic burger joints were on their game during our visits. There was nothing negative to report, just constructive criticism and personal preference.
We agreed that Whataburger was our preferred Houston fast food joint. Both Marcela and Fred enjoyed Whataburger’s burgers and fries.
I was with them on the burger, but for me, fresh-cut fries always beat the frozen variety.
What exactly does all this In-N-Out and Whataburger in Houston talk mean? You should eat from both; I know I would if I lived in Houston, Texas.