How much protein is in an In-N-Out Patty?

In-N-Out burgers are a popular fast food chain, especially on the West Coast of the United States. Their simple menu and fresh ingredients have earned them a cult following. One of the main draws of In-N-Out is their beef patties, which are made from 100% ground beef with no fillers or preservatives added. But just how much protein is packed into one of these tasty patties?

The Basics of In-N-Out Burgers

First, let’s do a quick overview of In-N-Out’s burger options:

  • Hamburger – features a single beef patty
  • Cheeseburger – hamburger with a slice of American cheese
  • Double-Double – two beef patties and two slices of cheese
  • Double Hamburger – two beef patties
  • 3×3 – three beef patties and three slices of cheese

The patty itself is always the same – a 2 oz beef patty made from 100% ground chuck. It’s never frozen, only shipped fresh and hand-formed into patties at each In-N-Out location.

Nutrition Information for In-N-Out Burgers

According to the In-N-Out nutrition guide, here is the protein content for each burger option:

Burger Serving Size Calories Protein (g)
Hamburger 1 burger (208g) 240 15
Cheeseburger 1 burger (220g) 290 16
Double-Double 1 burger (312g) 430 28
Double Hamburger 1 burger (283g) 370 24
3×3 1 burger (397g) 570 39

As you can see, the protein increases as you add more patties. A single 2 oz beef patty contains about 12g of protein. Add an extra patty and you’ll get about 24g of protein.

Protein Per Ounce of Beef

To get a more precise number, let’s look at the protein content in just the beef patties themselves. Each patty weighs 2 oz (57g) before cooking. According to the USDA, 2 oz of raw ground beef (80% lean) contains:

  • Calories: 179
  • Fat: 12g
  • Protein: 12g

That comes out to 16g of protein per 3 oz raw patty. So each ounce contains about 5.3g of protein.

Cooking the patty will slightly alter the counts. The protein content will remain mostly the same, but the patty will lose some water weight. Let’s assume a cooked 2 oz patty has about 11-12g of protein.

Other Sources of Protein in In-N-Out Burgers

The beef patty provides most of the burger’s protein, but some other sources include:

  • Bun: The burger bun provides 2-3g protein.
  • Cheese: The American cheese slice adds about 3g protein.
  • Spread: TheSpread (In-N-Out’s secret sauce) likely adds 1-2g protein.

When you add it all up, expect about 12g protein from a single patty burger. A Double-Double with two patties and two slices of cheese will have around 25g protein total.

How In-N-Out’s Protein Compares

Compared to other fast food burger places, In-N-Out tends to have more protein:

Burger Place Burger Type Protein (g)
In-N-Out Double-Double 25
McDonald’s Double Quarter Pounder with Cheese 28
Burger King Double Whopper 18
Wendy’s Baconator 41

The benefit of In-N-Out is that even a basic hamburger starts with a fresh, high-quality beef patty. Going up to a Double-Double quickly increases the protein intake. Wendy’s Baconator has more protein overall, but that’s packed into a nearly 1/2 pound burger.

Benefits of High Protein Burgers

Getting extra protein from your burger has several health benefits:

  • Increased satiety after eating
  • Helps preserve and build muscle when eaten after a workout
  • Provides lasting energy throughout the day
  • High thermic effect – the body burns more calories digesting protein

Protein takes longer break down than carbohydrates, so you feel fuller for longer after eating a high protein meal. Protein also helps replenish the muscles after a tough workout, allowing you to recover faster.

Great for Athletes and Bodybuilders

High protein burgers like In-N-Out are especially useful for athletes and bodybuilders who need extra protein to fuel their workouts and recovery. The convenience of picking up a quick meal that also packs 25+ grams of protein is invaluable.

Doubling up on protein by getting a Double-Double or 3×3 burger is an easy way to hit higher protein goals for the day. This can make life much easier compared to relying solely on cooking protein-rich meals from scratch.

Helps You Stay Full on a Diet

Even when dieting, you can still enjoy a great burger and get lean protein in. Pairing an In-N-Out burger with a side salad provides a filling, balanced meal. You can satisfy your burger craving while still hitting your macros, especially by sticking to the protein-packed double patty burgers.

Maximizing Protein When Ordering

Here are some tips to get the most protein from your In-N-Out order:

  • Go for the Double-Double or 3×3 burgers to load up on protein with multiple patties
  • Say no to spreads like ketchup and mustard to cut out excess carbs and sugar
  • Add extra leafy veggies and tomato for more fiber
  • Opt for a side salad instead of fries
  • Drink water instead of shakes and sodas

Sticking to the basics of a burger wrapped in lettuce is your best bet for getting protein without much else. A Flying Dutchman (two patties and cheese served in lettuce leaf) can supply nearly 30g protein.

Make Your Own High Protein Burger at Home

You can also make a DIY protein-packed burger using the following tips:

  • Use 80/20 ground beef which has 16g protein per quarter pound patty
  • Form larger 1/3 pound or half pound patties
  • Layer on extra meat with a beef patty and ground sausage patty stack
  • Add bacon for an extra protein punch
  • Use Ezekiel or other high protein buns
  • Load up with cheese, mushrooms, onions and other high protein toppings

Making your own burgers allows you to control the quality of ingredients. Splurge on grass-fed beef, wild caught salmon patties or ground bison for more nutrition.

Sample High Protein Burger Recipes

Greek Turkey Burger

  • 1 lb ground turkey (93% lean)
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 oz feta cheese
  • Spinach
  • Tomato
  • Red onion
  • Whole wheat bun

Form the ground turkey into 4 patties seasoned with oregano, garlic and onion powder. Grill to 165F internal temperature. Serve on a whole wheat bun with feta cheese, spinach, tomato and red onion.

Nutrition per burger:

  • 388 calories
  • 10g fat
  • 47g protein

Bison Burger with Blue Cheese

  • 1 lb ground bison
  • 1/4 cup blue cheese crumbles
  • Sliced mushrooms
  • Caramelized onions
  • Arugula
  • Whole wheat bun

Form the bison into 4 patties and cook to 160F. Top with blue cheese crumbles, mushrooms, onions and arugula. Serve on a toasted whole wheat bun.

Nutrition per burger:

  • 415 calories
  • 24g fat
  • 34g protein

Beef and Bacon Burger

  • 1/2 lb 80% lean ground beef
  • 2 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 2 slices cheddar cheese
  • BBQ sauce
  • Brioche bun

Form the beef into two patties and cook to 160F. Top with bacon, BBQ sauce and cheddar cheese. Serve on a toasted brioche bun.

Nutrition per burger:

  • 620 calories
  • 36g fat
  • 46g protein

Frequently Asked Questions

How much protein is in a 4×4 burger?

A 4×4 In-N-Out burger contains 4 beef patties and 4 slices of cheese, so it provides even more protein. Based on the protein content of individual patties and slices of cheese, a 4×4 likely contains around 52 grams of protein.

Are the patties 100% beef?

Yes, In-N-Out patties are made from 100% pure ground chuck. They contain no fillers, extenders or preservatives.

Does cooking decrease the protein in beef patties?

Cooking has minimal impact on protein loss in burgers. While cooking may cause some water loss, the majority of protein remains intact even after grilling patties. You’ll get nearly the same amount of protein compared to raw.

Is the protein complete or incomplete?

Beef contains complete protein, meaning it provides all 9 essential amino acids required for humans. This makes it an excellent source of protein quality.

Can you request bigger patties?

Unfortunately no, In-N-Out only uses their standard sized 2 oz patties for all burgers. You can add extra patties, but can’t request larger or smaller patties.

The Bottom Line

An In-N-Out burger provides 15-20g of high-quality animal protein in a convenient package. Going for options like the Double-Double or 3×3 allows you to easily increase the protein intake from your burger. Their fresh beef patties are an excellent source of complete protein on the go.

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