September 18th

National Cheeseburger Day -

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National Cheeseburger Day is a deliciously fun observance celebrated annually on September 18th. This day is dedicated to one of America’s favorite foods: the cheeseburger. A simple yet incredibly versatile sandwich, it’s a beloved classic that combines a juicy beef patty (or alternative protein), melty cheese, and a variety of toppings snugly held together by a soft bun.

This day is the perfect excuse for indulgence in this quintessential comfort food. Whether you like yours with the traditional lettuce, tomato, and onion, loaded with bacon and avocado, or customized with your own unique set of toppings and condiments, it’s a day to celebrate the cheeseburger in all its gooey, flavorful glory.

History of National Cheeseburger Day

The cheeseburger’s roots are often a subject of debate, with various accounts attributing its creation to several individuals throughout the 1920s or 1930s within the United States. A notable narrative involves a young man named Lionel Sternberger, who is credited with introducing cheese to the burger at The Rite Spot, a sandwich shop owned by his father, located in Pasadena, California, around 1926.

An alternative account suggests that Louis Ballast from the Humpty Dumpty Drive-In in Denver, Colorado, may have crafted the cheese-topped burger in 1935, even securing a trademark for the term “cheeseburger.” However, numerous other restaurants and geographic locations have also staked claims to this culinary staple.

What remains undisputed is that the addition of a melty slice of cheese to a grilled hamburger patty marked a momentous culinary invention, and its fusion of flavors has delighted the palates of countless individuals worldwide.

With time, the cheeseburger solidified its role as an essential feature on diner menus and at fast-food chains, permeating culinary cultures around the globe. This delightful dish typically comprises a juicy ground beef patty crowned with a slice of cheese—and often, an assortment of toppings such as crisp lettuce, ripe tomatoes, onions, and tangy pickles nestled between a soft bun.

National Cheeseburger Day Timeline

Origin of the Hamburger

The hamburger becomes popular in the United States, particularly at state fairs and in the growing number of diners.

First Cheeseburger?

Lionel Sternberger is reputed to have introduced the cheeseburger in 1924 at the Rite Spot, a restaurant in Pasadena, California.

Modern Cheeseburger Emerges

The sandwich that we recognize today as the cheeseburger starts to show up in menus, with Kaelin's Restaurant in Louisville, Kentucky claiming to have invented it in this year.

Cheeseburger Trademark

Louis Ballast of the Humpty Dumpty Drive-In in Denver, Colorado filed a trademark for the term 'cheeseburger'.

Expansion of Fast Food

The cheeseburger becomes a staple item in a rapidly growing number of fast food restaurants across the United States and eventually worldwide.

Gourmet and Specialty Cheeseburgers

With the evolution of the food culture, gourmet restaurants and diners begin offering a wide variety of cheeseburger options featuring artisanal cheeses and unique toppings.

Ideas to Celebrate National Cheeseburger Day

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Cheeseburger Cook-Off Challenge

Gather your friends or family and host a friendly cheeseburger competition. Each participant can bring their unique twist to the classic cheeseburger, using various cheeses and toppings. Have a taste test to decide whose creation is the National Cheeseburger Day Champion!

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Local Burger Joint Hop

Celebrate by visiting several local burger joints throughout the day. Sample different cheeseburger specialties at each location and rate them based on taste, creativity, and presentation. It's a great way to support local businesses and enjoy a variety of delicious burgers!

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Cheeseburger Grilling Party

Invite friends and family over for a backyard grilling party dedicated to cheeseburgers. Provide a range of different cheeses, from classic cheddar to exotic gouda, and a variety of toppings for guests to create their ultimate cheeseburger.

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Cheeseburger Movie Marathon

Create a cozy movie night featuring cheeseburger-themed movies or movies with iconic cheeseburger scenes. Think 'Pulp Fiction' or 'Good Burger' – and serve up some delicious cheeseburgers as you binge-watch.

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Cheeseburger DIY Toppings Bar

Set up a build-your-own cheeseburger bar complete with an array of cheeses, condiments, and toppings like avocado, bacon, grilled onions, and mushrooms. Allow guests to personalize their burgers while experimenting with flavor combinations.

7 Interesting Facts About Cheeseburgers


The Birth of the Cheeseburger

The cheeseburger is believed to have been first created by Lionel Sternberger in the 1920s in Pasadena, California, at his father's sandwich shop, 'The Rite Spot'. As the story goes, Lionel experimented by dropping a slice of American cheese onto a sizzling hamburger.


World Record Cheeseburger

The largest cheeseburger ever made weighed 1794 pounds and was prepared by Mallie's Sports Grill & Bar in Detroit in 2017.


The Cheeseburger Law

In 1935, a trademark for the term 'cheeseburger' was awarded to Louis Ballast of the Humpty Dumpty Drive-In in Denver, Colorado. Nevertheless, the term is now a generic description and cannot be enforced as a trademark – you can freely order a cheeseburger anywhere without infringing on the trademark.


Versatile Varieties

The cheeseburger comes in countless variations, with different types of cheese and toppings. Some popular versions include the bacon cheeseburger, mushroom cheeseburger, and the chili cheeseburger. Cheeses commonly used include cheddar, Swiss, blue cheese, and pepper jack among others.


Cheeseburger in Paradise

Jimmy Buffett's famous song 'Cheeseburger in Paradise' was inspired by a boat trip he took where the only thing he craved was a big warm burger with melted cheese. The song's popularity even inspired a chain of 'Cheeseburger in Paradise' restaurants.


Cheeseburger Diplomacy

During his tenure as President of the United States, Barack Obama was known for occasionally taking foreign leaders out for a casual meal. In June 2009, he and then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev enjoyed cheeseburgers together at Ray's Hell Burger in Arlington, Virginia, symbolizing informal diplomatic discussions.


The World's Most Expensive Cheeseburger

The title for the most expensive cheeseburger in the US goes to the 'Gold Standard' at Drury Beer Garden in Center City. Priced at $700, this luxury burger includes eight ounces of Japanese ribeye wagyu, Irish cheddar cheese, Italian black truffle, Italian caviar, and lobster meat flambeed with cognac.

National Cheeseburger Day FAQs

Next National Cheeseburger Day Dates

Year Date Day
2023 September 18th Monday
2024 September 18th Wednesday
2025 September 18th Thursday
2026 September 18th Friday
2027 September 18th Saturday
What is the pattern? Every September 18th

National Cheeseburger Day Word Search

  • Cheeseburger
  • Beef
  • Cheddar
  • Grilled
  • Lettuce
  • Tomato