The purpose of this study was to assess the plasma neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) for early detection of acute kidney injury (AKI) and prediction of mortality in severely burned patients. From January 2014 to September 2015, 76 consecutive patients with more than 20% of TBSA burned were enrolled. Blood samples for plasma NGAL were collected at 0, 7, 14, 21, and 28 days after admission and analyzed with injury severity, clinical outcome, and AKI development. Plasma NGAL was significantly affected by the TBSA burned, AKI, and mortality, and it was significantly increased after operation and septic shock. Plasma NGAL was significantly increased within 7 days before AKI development in total patients (P < .001) and septic shock patients (P < .001) but not significantly increased in patients without septic shock (P = .167). Though, in a receiver operating characteristic curve analysis for predicting AKI, continuous renal replacement therapy application, and mortality, plasma NGAL was statistically significant; plasma NGAL was not independently associated with mortality in a multivariate logistic regression analysis. Plasma NGAL should be interpreted carefully in the major burn patients because it can reflect both inflammatory condition and AKI.