I visited the Guy Fieri restaurant that's on every Carnival cruise, and it was a far cry from an average fast-food meal

·7 min read
guy's burger joint Megan duBois holding up burger smiling
I ate around 10 burgers during my four-day Carnival cruise.Megan duBois
  • I tried Guy's Burger Joint, a Guy Fieri-created restaurant that's on all Carnival Cruise Line ships.

  • The menu has five different burgers and a wide array of toppings and sauces.

  • My favorite burger had two patties — one was made of beef and the other of bacon.

Guy Fieri has a burger restaurant on every Carnival Cruise Line ship, and I decided to try it.

guy's burger joint on carnival cruise ship
Guy's Burger Joint is on every Carnival Cruise Line ship.Megan duBois

Carnival Cruise Line is known for its budget-friendly voyages and impressive lido-deck dining options, one of which is Guy's Burger Joint.

The restaurant opened in 2011 as a partnership between the cruise line and Guy Fieri, a chef and Food Network personality. Now, it's a staple on every Carnival Cruise Line ship and will also be on the upcoming additions to the fleet: the Carnival Celebration and the Carnival Jubilee.

When I recently sailed on the Carnival Elation, I decided to try the "roadside burger shack" for myself. Since Guy's Burger Joint is included in the price of the cruise, I was standing in line for burgers and fries almost every single day of our four-night cruise.

We didn't need a reservation but still made sure to check the operating hours on the Carnival HUB app ahead of time. On the Elation, Guy's Burger Joint was open from noon until 6 p.m.

The menu lists five burgers, and there's a language key to decode Fieri's iconic lingo.

guy's burger joint menu on carnival cruise
Five burgers were on the menu at Guy's Burger Joint.Megan duBois

The restaurant is described as a "roadside burger shack," and it definitely felt like one.

The road signs were the first thing I noticed since they made the restaurant look like it actually sat along the iconic US Route 66. The red tile and dark wood paneling also played into the roadside diner theme without being too over-the-top.

The Guy's Burger Joint menu only has five burger options, but they encapsulate everything a person might want, from a plain burger to a loaded chili cheeseburger.

When I perused the menu, I noticed a lot of abbreviations. Luckily, there was a key underneath to help. It explained that "LTOP" stands for "lettuce, tomato, onion, and pickle," and "SMC" is short for "super melty cheese."

The line at Guy's Burger Joint moved quickly, and it never took me more than five minutes to reach the front.

I ordered one of every burger so I could try all of them.

guy's burger joint Megan duBois holding up burger smiling
I tried every burger on the menu at Guy's Burger Joint.Megan duBois

To test out the menu, I ordered one of every burger, along with a side of fries, when I first boarded the ship.

That way, I could figure out which burger was going to be my go-to selection for the rest of the weekend.

The sauce bar fell short of my expectations.

guy's burger joint condiment station
There were only five condiments available at Guy's Burger Joint.Megan duBois

After receiving my burgers on a metal tray with Guy's Burger Joint-themed parchment paper, I headed to the sauce bar.

Because the sauce selection at Fieri's Chicken Guy restaurant in Orlando was so impressive, I was slightly disappointed by the lack of options at Guy's Burger Joint.

There were only five sauces: ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, ranch, and chipotle mayo.

I'm not a big fan of putting traditional condiments, like ketchup or mustard, on my burgers or fries, but the chipotle mayo always made its way onto my tray. It was creamy and spicy, making it a perfect topping for my burger and a delicious dip for my fries.

From grilled peppers to dill pickle chips, there were plenty of burger toppings to choose from.

guy's burger joint toppings
The toppings bar at Guy's Burger Joint.Megan duBois

I loved the selection of hot burger toppings, which included grilled peppers, onions, and chili.

The cold options — pickled peppers, dill pickle chips, sliced white onions, sliced tomatoes, and shredded iceberg lettuce — were a little less inspired but still solid.

My favorite burger had two patties, and one of them was made of bacon.

guy's burger joint cheese burger and fries
In my opinion, the Pig Patty was the best item on the menu.Megan duBois

After trying the entire menu, I landed on the Pig Patty as my absolute favorite. It had two patties stacked on top of each other — one was a standard smashed patty with crispy edges and a cheese topping, the other was made out of bacon.

The Pig Patty was indulgent and slightly greasy, two things I look for in a burger. It had so much flavor that I didn't use any extra toppings or sauces.

Fieri's signature condiment, Donkey Sauce, was slathered all over the Straight Up burger.

guy's burger joint burger and fries
The Straight Up burger was smothered in Donkey Sauce.Megan duBois

I was excited to try the Straight Up burger, which had the same toasted bun and smashed burger patty as the Pig Patty.

The toppings were supposed to include cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle, and a generous slathering of Donkey Sauce (Fieri's signature garlic aioli).

When I got the Straight Up burger, it didn't have lettuce, tomatoes, or pickles, but it didn't really need them. The Donkey Sauce and cheese added plenty of flavor.

The Plain Jane burger is a safe, simple option.

guy's burger joint cheese burger and sauce
The Plain Jane was the most simple option on the menu.Megan duBois

The Plain Jane, a grilled patty on a bun, was the item I heard ordered most frequently in line. I got mine with cheese, but it can also be ordered with just a patty as well.

The burger was a great option for kids who don't want a lot of extra dressing on their burger. Personally, I wanted a bit more flavor, so I dipped the Plain Jane into some chipotle mayo.

The Ringer was topped with barbecue sauce and an onion ring.

guy's burger joint burger and fries
The Ringer had an onion ring and barbecue sauce on it.Megan duBois

The Ringer was dressed up with cheese, a crispy fried onion ring, and Fieri's bourbon-and-brown-sugar barbecue sauce, which was a bit spicy.

All of the sauces made the burger a little messy, but it was nothing a napkin couldn't fix.

The one bad thing about the Ringer was that the onion ring got soggy fairly quickly. Next time I order it, I'll ask for a few onion rings on the side and eat them along with the burger.

The Chilius Maximus was an ideal order for chili lovers.

guy's burger joint megan's dad eating chili burger
My dad tried the Chilius Maximus.Megan duBois

The Chilius Maximus is loaded with melted cheese, chili, an onion ring, and Donkey Sauce.

I don't like chili, so I knew this burger would be my least favorite. So, I tapped on my dad, who loves chili burgers, to give me his honest opinion.

He said the chili wasn't too spicy, and its warm notes paired well with the garlicky Donkey Sauce. But again, the onion ring did lose its crunch after sitting on top of the moist patty.

The fries were such a hit that I ordered a serving every time I went to Guy's Burger Joint.

guy's burger joint cheese burger and fries pig patty
The Pig Patty, which had a second bacon patty, was a standout on the menu.Megan duBois

Nothing goes better with burgers than hot fries, so I got some every time I ate at Guy's Burger Joint.

Even though the menu said the fries were hand-cut, they tasted more like frozen fries — but that's completely fine by me. They stayed crisp for a long time.

They were tossed in a spice blend that tasted like a mix of salt, paprika, and possibly garlic powder. I tried to get the chef to share the recipe but had no luck.

Beyond tasting delicious on their own, the fries were a perfect vehicle to get more of my favorite chipotle-mayo sauce into my mouth.

In the span of my four-day cruise, I ate around 10 burgers.

guy's burger joint toppings bar
There was a station with burger toppings at Guy's Burger Joint.Megan duBois

The delicious burgers at Fieri's restaurant were a far cry from an average fast-food meal. I also loved eating at Guy's Burger Joint because it felt like stepping into Fieri's popular Food Network show "Diner's, Drive-Ins, and Dives."

Whenever I walked by the restaurant, there were at least three or four people waiting in line. Clearly, it resonated with my fellow cruise-goers as well.

Guy's Burger Joint might not be the fanciest restaurant on the Carnival ships, but in my opinion, it's definitely the most flavorsome.

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