We had been told we'd never get an In-N-Out Burger restaurant here in New York, or anywhere in the eastern U.S. for that matter. However, one lone In-N-Out burger somehow found its way to the streets of New York back in 2019.

In-N-Out Comes to New York?

Had the popular chain changed its mind and suddenly decided to expand to the east coast?

The internet began to speculate that this could have been some sort of marketing for a new location set to open in New York. The mysterious uneaten burger said to be in "pristine condition," was found lying right there on the street in Queens. Was it part of a TV shoot, or some sort of art decoration?

At the time, no one knew how it got there.

The Story

One Instagram user stumbled upon the burger that seemed to just be chillin' on its own and shared a pic of the lonesome beef patty on social media. The folks at In-N-Out were confused about all this attention as well.

They said they had no idea how one of their cooked burgers found its way to New York, considering their closest restaurants are in Texas.

The company’s vice president of operations said in a statement that he was “surprised” to hear about the phantom burger:

Because our burgers are only cooked fresh to order in six states, it must have taken considerable planning for that burger to make the trip from the grill all the way to the Empire State.

So, What Really Happened? 

Well, it turns out this story wasn't so spectacular after all.

After sharing his pic of the burger, the Instagram user told Vice he was contacted by a 16-year-old high school student from Flushing, who said she had purchased her order out in Encinitas, California.

She had then taken a cross-country JetBlue flight back to JFK Airport. She went on to say she kept the burgers she ordered in a bag, but the bag burst open and spilled when she sprinted to catch a bus.

The NY Post says she even posted a screenshot of the In-N-Out restaurant she visited in California, her order receipt, and even her flight information as proof.

There were no In-N-Outs coming to New York. Basically, someone just dropped the damn burger in the street.


In-N-Out is known as a California restaurant chain, with locations also in Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Texas, and Idaho. they currently have 358 locations nationwide.

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Gallery Credit: Paul Feinstein