Frequent monitoring of early-stage burns is necessary for deciding optimal treatment and management. Both superficial and full thickness burns are relatively easy to diagnose based on clinical observation. In between these two extremes are superficial-partial thickness and deep-partial thickness burns. These burns, while visually similar, differ dramatically in terms of clinical treatment and are known to progress in severity over time. The objective of this study was to determine the potential of spatial frequency domain imaging (SFDI) for noninvasively mapping quantitative changes in chromophore and optical properties that may be an indicative of burn wound severity. A controlled protocol of graded burn severity was developed and applied to 17 rats. SFDI data was acquired at multiple near-infrared wavelengths over a course of 3 h. Burn severity was verified using hematoxylin and eosin histology. From this study, we found that changes in water concentration (edema), deoxygenated hemoglobin concentration, and optical scattering (tissue denaturation) to be statistically significant at differentiating superficial partial-thickness burns from deep-partial thickness burns.