The Best Hot Dog in Every State (2022)

Americans tend to think of the hot dog, the wiener, the frankfurter, as a terribly American thing, something fast-talking men in suits ate at brightly-lit counter joints in black and white movies. But like pretty much every thing America has ever done, good or bad, the origin story of the hot dog begins elsewhere—in this case, Europe.

There are those classic Viennese coffee houses where lanky franks are served on platters with pungent mustard, freshly-shredded horseradish, and pots of gulasch sauce, a beautiful creation I like to think of as a classy, Old World ancestor to so much American meat sauce.

And then there are the dogs of Switzerland, and train stations in Germany. There's the frikandel of the Netherlands—deep-frying a hot dog wasn't invented by us, either—and the street dogs of Copenhagen, where you'll find more carts than in parts of Manhattan. How did the hot dog become one of America's favorite foods? Just look back across the Atlantic.

And, boy, did we grab the bull by the horns. We give ourselves enough credit, as a country, for how widespread we were able to send this lowbrow-brilliant European invention. We have rippers in New Jersey, sizzling from their oil baths and topped with spicy relish. We have bacon-wrapped Sonoran dogs in Tucson, Coney dogs dripping sauce that rich with suet and beef heart in Detroit, dogs topped with pimiento cheese in the Carolinas, and slaw dogs in West Virginia.

The Best Hot Dog in Every State (1)

When my dreams of European travel were curtailed by the pandemic, I ate hot dogs. I ate Michigans in New York's North Country. I ate Italian dogs in Elizabeth, New Jersey, served in hollowed-out loafs with at least a pound of fried potatoes. I ate baked beans and red snappers in Maine, and fried dogs topped with head-clearing pepper relish and rich, hot brown mustard in Connecticut, served with cooling cups of birch beer. On and on it went, all across the country, so many greats, and in many cases, very old ones, very nearly unchanged after a century in business.

By nature, a hot dog joint is relatively easy to manifest, but the journey to indispensability is long and often difficult. The landscape is littered with the wreckage of failed establishments where the proprietor gambled on toppings, forgetting that this particular house is nothing, nothing at all, without a strong foundation: a quality dog and a well-crafted bun. Who could blame them for going the visual route, in this aggressively visual age. Many a wide-eyed entrepreneur has learned that the hot dog is not so easily suited to modern times, and that is precisely the point: hot dogs are not the most photogenic, and some of the finest can be downright unsightly.

The Best Hot Dog in Every State (2)

Here, we're celebrating the finest hot dogs, no matter what they look like on camera. So jump in the car and try the one nearest to you.

Alabama

Suppose you are new to town and do not already know this, and if you do not, don't worry, you'll learn—behind so many of Birmingham's finest institutions, there is often a family of Greek immigrants, and the city's favorite dog joint, an institution since 1940, is no exception. There were other Greek hot dog joints besides Gus's at one time, but today, this bite-sized counter spot at the heart of the city's cavernous downtown is the sole survivor—simply, we'd like to think, because it was the best. Fans of all ages come here for fat, pink, locally-made franks, chargrilled, sputtering, and topped with (among other things, and most importantly) Gus's unique onion sauce, which has been around as long as the restaurant.

(Video) Here's Where To Get The Best Hot Dog In Your State

Alaska

Reindeer dogs from a cart are a lunchtime staple in downtown Anchorage, but the Polish-style regional favorites get all dressed up at the Talkeetna Roadhouse, a scenic few hours' drive to the north, where the Rudy-in-a-Parka pairs well with any chilly day in one of Alaska's most amiable small towns. Order a Chili-Rudy, and you'll get the local answer to the pig-in-a-blanket, served with a healthy portion of reindeer chili.

Arizona

Tucson, with its thousands of years of documented food heritage, was not named a UNESCO City of Gastronomy for nothing, back in 2015. We'd like to think it had a great deal to do with the city's famed (and treasured) Sonoran dogs, which more often than not come from the iconic El Guero Canelo, serving the city for nearly thirty years now. Bacon-wrapped and tucked into a soft, steamed, house-baked bolillo, we'd eat them just like that, but the joy of the Sonoran dog—popular on both sides of the border for generations—is that there's so much more to the experience. Sometimes too much, albeit in the very best possible way: think beans, onions (raw and fried), mustard, mayo, and the house jalapeño salsa.

Arkansas

All-beef dogs brought down from Chicago get the local treatment at the Original ScoopDog in North Little Rock, a popular year-round stop for thick frozen custard shakes and concretes with different styles from around the country. But this is Arkansas, so you'll find us chowing down on the Sooie Dog, topped with bacon and barbecue sauce, or the Frito Pie dog, with queso (known around here as cheese dip), Fritos, chili, and a whisper of celery salt.

California

There's always been plenty to eat in San Diego's historic Barrio Logan, but lately, one of the city's most interesting neighborhoods has become a full-blown food destination. On the to-do list, you'll find Barrio Dogg, where 100% Angus beef franks and Sonoran-style bolillos are the bedrock for some of the most creative creations out there. Pablo Rios—artist, custom lowrider designer, chef, and owner—pays tribute to the carts found on the streets of neighboring Tijuana with the Xolito, topped with two kinds of onions, tomatoes, crema, salsa verde, Sriracha aioli, and cheddar cheese. This is the first dog he ever sold, from a makeshift cart set-up in the back of his Chevy Impala.

Colorado

Wild boar, ostrich, rattlesnake, rabbit—at Biker Jim's in Denver, all game is fair game. One of the country's most unusual hot dog joints serves relatively few classic hot dogs; fans are too busy getting creative with the sprawling menu of things you've probably never tried before. Choose your tubed adventure, and then go for a broad selection of topping choices—the house classic, which pairs surprisingly well with most of your options, is cream cheese and caramelized onions, a style cribbed from (and it's totally fine) Seattle.

Connecticut

Brown mounds of fried clam bellies, mayo-dressed lobster, steamed hamburgers oozing white cheese, those curious squares of sweet-sauced beach pizza—New England is a land of iconic and delicious roadside favorites that do not always photograph well, its many and varied hot dogs chief among them. But while the lightly blistered (from their gentle oil bath) local franks served to you plain on rather pedestrian rolls at Blackie's in Cheshire may not win any beauty prizes, since 1928, the locals have been turning up in very large numbers to eat them, in part because of what goes on top, if you're doing it right: the one-two punch of flavorful and surprisingly hot house pepper relish, and a trail of even spicier coarse brown mustard. Unforgettable.

Delaware

Sometimes there's grinding traffic, but on a good day, the I-95 long-hauler will spend so little time in Delaware, they might not even know they were there, and that's a shame. In roughly twenty miles or so, we can think of all sorts of great roadside eats, just waiting beyond the exits. In the mood for hot dogs? Two legendary joints compete to serve the First State's best chili dog: the half-century old Dog House in New Castle, which serves split foot-longs on hoagie rolls, and Deer Head Chili Dogs in Wilmington and Newark, where the spicy meat sauce has drawn a following since 1935.

Florida

Take a crash course on South American hot dog culture in Miami, where it's less chili dog and more Chile Dog, as in Chile, the country, where hot dogs are a way of life. Colombia, Venezuela, it's all here, but start with the delectable Cuban-style perros at El Mago de las Fritas, specifically the Mago Meaty Dog, which comes topped with ham croquetas, potato sticks, and frita meat. It's a seasoned beef and pork blend, the bedrock of the Frita, otherwise known as a Cuban burger.

Georgia

You'll have to look long and hard for a relish much like the century-old (or close to it) recipe served at Charlie Joseph's, a humble haunt in little La Grange. For the perfect balance, order a dog topped with the spicy-hot pepper mixture, alongside that other house (and Southern) favorite, the slaw dog. Feeling wild, or just plain hung over? The Scrambled Dog is a delicious mess of chopped up wieners, topped with chili, oyster crackers, and pickles.

Hawaii

The sweet-tart passion fruit mustard from Aunty Lilikoi's is one of our top tastes of Kauai without actually traveling to Kauai, and you can order as much as you want, online, so it makes perfect sense that it ended up being the signature topping at Puka Dog, Kauai's favorite hot dog joint. Juicy Polish sausages are disappeared into freshly-baked blankets and daubed with garlic lemon aioli, your choice of relish (most people go for mango, but make sure to weigh all your options) and, of course, that famous mustard.

Idaho

America's oldest ski resort is known as a glittering playground for the rich and famous, but Sun Valley has some delightful little quirks, one of them being Jill Rubin's long-running Irving's Red Hots, a year-round stand dating back to the 1970s, that has served up simple but satisfying Polish dogs on steamed buns with classic toppings to everyone from hard-working locals on a budget to Tom Hanks.

Illinois

Just like deep dish isn't the only pizza, there's more to Chicago hot dog culture than the famous dragged-through-the-garden extravaganza, not that there's anything wrong with that. At Gene & Jude's, a suburban River Grove institution since 1946, the slightly more minimal Depression Dog has ruled the menu since the very beginning—a standard Vienna Beef frank with mustard, relish, onions, and sport peppers on a plain roll, no seeds, topped with a handful of some of the best fresh cut French fries in town. Don't even think about asking for ketchup.

(Video) The Best Hot Dog in Every State

Indiana

The budding, pre-Nathan's hot dog culture of New York's premier beach destination in the very early 20th century must have left quite the impression on recent arrivals from Europe, who passed through Ellis Island on their way to settle in the Midwest. The first Coney Island hot dog joint appeared, courtesy of a group of Macedonian immigrants, in downtown Fort Wayne in 1913, and everything pretty much snowballed from there. To this day, neighboring Michigan gets most of the attention for their thriving Coney Island restaurant scene, but Fort Wayne's Coney Island Wiener Stand, in the same spot for over a century, came first, if only by a hair. You're here for grilled dogs on steamed buns, topped with mustard, the house version of the secretively-spiced coney meat sauce that makes a dog a Coney dog, and a miniature avalanche of chopped raw onion.

Iowa

Founded back in the 1930s by a recent immigrant from Austria, Wimmer's still makes some of the best naturally-sheathed wieners in the country, and they're part of what makes Bob's Drive Inn in Le Mars such a winner—when you start with something this good, there's a low likelihood of failure. Top it off with well-seasoned and textured loose meat (the same ground beef that goes into one of Iowa's most famous sandwiches), cheese, and pickles, and you've got yourself an only-in-Iowa must-try. Stick around for the excellent soft serve.

Kansas

Four generations of family descended from a German master butcher is one of the secrets to success at Fritz's, Kansas City's oldest smokehouse, dating back to the 1920s. In-the-know grillers come from all over to sample the astounding selection of sausage styles from around the world—boudin blanc, butifarra, boerewors, the list goes on and on. Join them, and stick around for the superb all-beef frankfurters and spicy Polish sausages, served up simply (a dab of mustard will do you) at lunch time.

Kentucky

The century-old Camayo Arcade—one of the oldest surviving enclosed shopping centers in the country—would make a great stop in architecturally-blessed downtown Ashland even if it were completely empty, which it is not. The arcade is where you come to eat lunch at Jim's Hot Dogs & Spaghetti, a modest spot known for hot dogs topped with a unique, Italian-spiced meat sauce, and if you're up for it, a thwack of coleslaw. This is exactly the hot dog joint you'd expect to find along the Ohio River on the way from Coney-crazed Cincinnati to slaw dog-happy West Virginia. They even serve up homemade strawberry pie in season.

Louisiana

A classic Coney joint isn't the first thing you'd go looking for this far south, but then again, Monroe is practically Yankee territory by Louisiana standards. The West Monroe Coney Island, open since 1962, is a cramped counter joint famous locally for two things: proper Coneys topped with the secret house chili, mustard, and onions, and—you're on the edge of the Mississippi Delta here, after all—the house hot tamales. Don't choose. Order both.

Maine

Beans and franks—served with Boston brown bread from a can—was for generations a Saturday night staple in this part of the world, and judging from the often impressive selection of all of the above at many local supermarkets, the tradition isn't in danger of dying out any time soon. No need to wait for Saturdays for the classic local pairing of a bright red snapper dog and molasses and salt pork-cooked yellow-eye beans (Maine grown!) at Dysart's, one of New England's finest truck stops that's also a diner and a bakery.

Maryland

With heavy hitters like crab cakes and pit beef on the menu, it's no wonder the Baltimore-style hot dog remains all but unknown outside the region. There isn't much to it—you take a kosher, all-beef dog, top it with (or wrap it in) fried bologna, and that's it, that's the hot dog, apart from the usual condiments. This simple tradition, going back to the 1940s, remains one of the most popular items on the menu at Attman's, the brightest star along what remains of Baltimore's famous Corned Beef Row. Try your dog straight up, maybe with a little mustard to start; you can add chili too, if you like.

Massachusetts

There are at least two version of The Berkshires—the privileged, rural idyll, with some of the most beautiful countryside to be found within a short drive of New York City, and the post-industrial one, found in Pittsfield, as well as the extremely historic mill towns of Housatonic, and North Adams, where Jack's Hot Dogs has been a fixture since 1917, operated today by the grandson of the original founder. The move here is chili dogs, wrapped in American cheese and topped with the house meat sauce. The franks are sourced from nearby Pittsfield, which incidentally claims a hot dog culture all its own. You know, in case you're at Canyon Ranch or Kripalu, and find yourself in need a snack. (We'll never tell.)

Michigan

You'll find meat sauce-topped Coney dogs all over the Midwest, but Metro Detroit is very much the capital of the culture, a century after the fun started. Two of the most important hot dog joints in the country can be found on the same street corner in downtown Detroit, but it's Lafayette Coney Island, the youngest of the two, open since 1924, that draws us in again and again, for its classic lunch counter atmosphere, efficient service, and perhaps the finest Coney sauce in existence, rich in the locally-requisite beef heart. Anyone raised on snappy East Coast dogs will find the supple beef-pork blend dogs (at last check made just down the road in Dearborn) a revelation—the perfect fit for that flavorful sauce. Complete the picture with mustard and chopped raw onion, and you've got the best hot dog not only in Michigan, but in a lot of other states, as well, whether they know it or not.

Minnesota

Let's just have this out. The best hot dog in Minnesota comes from the Minnesota State Fair, where the classic battered-and-fried Pronto Pup (not quite a standard corn dog, we'd say it's better, more delicate) has reigned supreme since the 1940s. So closely linked to local food culture, many Minnesotans won't accept that the Pronto Pup was actually invented on the West Coast, but to be fair, that's almost a technicality at this point—no other state has sustained quite so serious an affair with the classic snack. Case in point: When the pandemic shut down the state fair, locals lined up for hours at a pop-up drive through event to get their favorite snack.

Mississippi

With more than 40 locations in the state and exactly zero anyplace else, Ward's is Mississippi's not-so-little fast food secret, and at the heart of its continued success is the Big One, one of the messiest, most grotesque looking, and most delicious classic chili cheeseburgers this side of the likes of Tommy's in Los Angeles. The lighter, less messy pairing of a classic chili cheese dog, and frosty, brewed-on-premises root beer make for one of the state's most iconic quick meals.

Missouri

One of the loveliest restaurant happy endings of 2020 happened just before the pandemic. After a decade of being loved by St. Louis, Steve Ewing, owner of Steve's Hot Dogs, had to come clean—the city's favorite hot dog joint wasn't making ends meet, and they would have to close. That was January. The response was immense, the goodbye intense, and it didn't end up lasting very long: a month before the country disappeared into our terrible new normal, an angel investor came forward with a cash infusion. Steve's was safe, and it's been doing a brisk business ever since. Get the Backyard BBQ dog, a smoky frank topped with baked beans, potato salad, bacon, and barbecue sauce.

(Video) The Best Hot Dog in Each State 2022

Montana

After half a century in the restaurant business, Buck Loomis—he must be close to 80 by now— doesn't seem ready to slow down, at least not yet. For over a decade, he's been the owner, operator, chief cook, and bottle washer at Mr. Hot Dogs, a Butte classic that Loomis has taken in a fascinating direction, drawing on years of experience running Italian restaurants to create a fun menu of knife-and-fork Italian hot dogs. (Hot dog parm, anyone?)

Nebraska

The menu board from 1933 still hangs behind the counter at the Coney Island Lunch Room in Grand Island: Mexican chili for 10 cents, Italian spaghetti for 15. The prices and the menu have changed somewhat since then. Today, the hot dog, with a garlicky meat sauce that goes back to the very beginning, is the star of the show, alongside hand-cut French fries and frosty chocolate malts. A fine stop on any I-80 road trip.

Nevada

With a diverse population hailing from all corners of the country and the world, Las Vegas has become something of a gold mine of regional hot dog styles; we'll take the creative, Korean-style hot dogs at Buldogis, please, any day of the week, where house-made kimchi and spicy aioli are the new sauerkraut and mustard.

New Hampshire

Portsmouth's finest diner isn't actually a diner at all, but rather the last remaining mobile lunch cart ever built by the Worcester Lunch Car Co.. Gilley's PM Lunch hasn't been mobile since 1974, but visitors are often surprised by just how small the place is—eight stools at the counter, from which to admire the gorgeous 1940s porcelain and oak interior. Lately, the dining room has been shuttered, with orders coming in and out of the small window leading to the kitchen, but the food is as good as ever. For a true taste of New England, order the Beans & Dogs—a generous helping of house-made beans, two high-quality franks, and slices of buttered bread for dipping, wrapped in wax paper. A classic pleasure of the highest order. Make room for the perfect hand-cut fries, too, made with Maine-grown potatoes.

New Jersey

Hot dog love runs deep in the Garden State, and there's plenty to choose from, but when it comes to the best, there's only one regional style so unique, so memorable, that ignoring it is almost impossible—we're talking, of course, about the Italian dog. Created in Newark during a very different time, this isn't so much your standard dog, but rather a nearly complete meal, served up in half a loaf of the locally favored pizza bread. In goes an all-beef dog or an Italian sausage (or one of each, that's totally acceptable), plus an abundance of peppers and onions, plus a mound of thinly sliced fried potatoes. These days, the most memorable brush with this vastly underrated classic will be at Tommy's Italian Sausage, a walk-up window in Elizabeth, just a few minutes from the Goethals Bridge.

New Mexico

Memorable appearances on Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul have now made it famous, but Albuquerque locals have long known that when the craving strikes for hot dogs, it pretty much has to be the split and grilled foot longs—topped with the unique red chile sauce, cheese and onions, too, if you like—at the divey Dog House, a neon-adorned drive-in along the Route 66 strip. If your heart is set on a green chile dog, then have one—normally, that goes on the cheeseburgers, but they'll sell you a cup on the side, no questions asked.

New York

From footlongs grilled over hot coals at Ted's in Buffalo (1927) to meat-sauce topped Michigans at Clare & Carl's in furthest Plattsburgh (1942) to Nathan's, pride of Coney Island since 1916, there isn't a corner of the state without a vital link to hot dog history. To this day, however, nobody has quite managed to top the magnificent combination of fresh tropical fruit drinks and hickory smoke-scented dogs made famous at the Papaya King, which began life as the city's first juice bar on the Upper East Side in the 1930s, spawned countless imitators, and outlasted nearly all of them. A giant papaya drink—fresh fruit purée with some sugar and powdered milk added in—and a grilled dog slathered in sweet onion sauce and mustard is a classic New York combination that too often goes overlooked. West of Central Park, Gray's Papaya has been a mainstay at the corner of 72nd and Broadway since 1973; famous for offering an attractively-priced Recession Special through good times and bad.

North Carolina

You could certainly order a pork sandwich at the century-plus-old J. S. Pulliam Barbecue in Winston-Salem, but most people are here for the slaw-topped hot dogs, served in buttered, grill-toasted buns; onions, mustard and liberal amounts of the house hot sauce complete the beautiful picture. Well, that and a bottle of Cheerwine.

North Dakota

We might not drag our German friends to the Wurst Bier Hall in Fargo for the currywurst—this is North Dakota, not the streets of Berlin, and the locally-made bratwurst slathered in from-scratch curry ketchup is definitely an interpretation, not a recreation. Still, when there's nobody around to nitpick, we're very much there, and maybe even experimenting, too. You can choose whichever sausage you like, from a menu that goes from the classic (kielbasa) to the thoroughly adventurous (elk jalapeño cheddar).

Ohio

During the warmer months, one of the best lunches in downtown Cincinnati traditionally came straight from the grill parked out in front of Avril Bleh Meat Market & Deli, one of the top butcher shops in the country since 1894. They've expanded into sleek new digs this year, but nothing really important has changed—take your pick of dogs and brats and sausages, often made from recipes going back more than a century. For our money, that sturdy, smoky, beautifully-spiced cousin to the hot dog, the Mettwurst, maybe even one oozing melted cheddar, is the one to beat. With this much flavor, a squirt of mustard is all you need.

Oklahoma

We tend to think of Coney dogs as more of a Rust Belt thing, but for generations, the Coney-I-Lander has been a Tulsa mainstay, inspiring so much loyalty that the restaurant—actually, it's a mini-chain—now ships nationwide. The signature menu item is a delicious hybrid of regional styles—the dog is griddled for starters, and while there's a house chili with the requisite secret spice blend, and mustard and onions (think Detroit), there's a mound of finely shaved, bright orange cheddar cheese, too (hello, Cincinnati). The end result? One hundred percent Tulsa. They do a great Frito pie, as well.

Oregon

Made from the highest quality beef and pork and smoked over alder wood right on premises, the old-fashioned wieners at Otto's Sausage Kitchen in Portland are some of the finest to be found this side of the Atlantic. Family-owned and at it for nearly a century now, Otto's famously fires up their outdoor grill most afternoons, serving the house franks and sausages with an array of simple condiments.

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Pennsylvania

The service is perfunctory on a good day, the vibe is pre-gentrification Fishtown, and the crowd is as down-by-the-docks as it gets around here these days. In other words, Johnny's Hots is the perfect place to introduce the unsuspecting to the very best kind of Philadelphia, the no-bullshit kind, starring a reliable cast of characters that can be found lining up at strange hours, as early as five o'clock in the morning. After years of attrition, this is also one of the last best places in Philadelphia for one of the city's more under-appreciated meals: the long hot (a sausage/dog combo type deal), topped with a cod and potato fish cake, and a bright, crispy pepper hash made with cabbage and apple cider vinegar, flecked with red peppers for color. Don't fight it—just eat it. This was meant to be.

Rhode Island

Doughboys, stuffies, coffee cabinets—the extremely specific foodways of the smallest state are among its finest attributes. And while it certainly is something of a contest, this being hot dog-mad New England and all, it's hard to think of a more entrenched and unique regional style than the New York System hot wiener: supple, little, locally-manufactured veal and pork beauties served up in steamed rolls, bathed in cumin-inflected meat sauce, and topped with onions, mustard, and celery salt. Do it right at the Olneyville New York System in Providence and Cranston, around since the wars, with an order of as many teeny weenies as you can handle, plus a coffee milk to go with.

South Carolina

Below the Blue Ridge Mountains in places like Greenville, winters don't get quite so cold as they do up north, but this isn't the Lowcountry either, with a good string of months where something comforting like a chili and slaw-topped dog (with a side of above-average fries) sounds like just the thing—luckily, you never seem to be very far from a fine establishment serving up just that. None more essential, however, than Holmes Hot Dogs in Spartanburg, around for roughly seven decades now, the sort of place where you get into conversations with strangers about how they've been coming here for their entire lives. Here, the dogs come with generous portions of crispy crinkle-cuts.

South Dakota

Known primarily as an Iowa thing, the loose meat sandwich is the calling card not all that far past the state line at Yankton's Tastee Treet Drive-In, where they're called Tastee Beefs, and have been for well over half a century now. Apologies to the signature menu item, but it's the Kwiki Dog, the house corn dog, that could lure us back any old time—that and a butterscotch milkshake, though you could make yours a chocolate malt. That's more than fine too.

Tennessee

There is no discussion of Memphis barbecue without Payne's, the stripped-down, family-owned institution where the star of the show is a chopped pork sandwich topped with bright yellow mustard slaw-relish and spicy sauce, to the point where you'd be forgiven if you thought that was the only thing served here. Like so many other local barbecue icons, however, Payne's menu is full of surprises, and includes that other local favorite—the smoked sausage, crisped up with a quick trip to the fryer and topped with all the good stuff. The result: A quietly epic meal to rival the house specialty.

Texas

Tucson may have popularized the Sonoran-style dog north of the border, but you can't keep a good thing from going wide, which is how the bacon-wrapped beauties have rather recently become one of the most popular things to eat from a truck in Austin, a city already spoiled for choice in the street food category. Founded by a Le Cordon Bleu grad who once worked for Thomas Keller, T-Loc serves up one of the finest examples of the generously-topped genre we've found this far from their spiritual home.

Utah

Brigham Young grad Jayson Edwards saw a hole in the campus-adjacent food situation and filled it a few years back with J Dawgs, a literal shack selling delicious all-beef dogs, artfully slashed in criss-cross fashion, griddled, and topped with a secret, barbecue-esque sauce based on a recipe his grandmother clipped from a newspaper half a century earlier. These days, Edwards sits atop something of a mini-empire of brick and mortar shops, and a truck service that seems to pretty much cover the entire state. Toppings are very much on the Five Guys model—as many or as little as you like. Start simply, however, with that sauce, and maybe a sprinkling of raw onion, for crunch—there's something about the combo of dog, char, and sauce that's almost too good to cover up.

Vermont

Burlington loves to eat well, and at times you'll forget that Vermont's big city is actually quite small, given all the great restaurants and talented artisans that a modest population manages to support. Not that they're snobs around here—most nights, Al's French Frys, a classic diner out on the suburban fringe, has been one of the most happening places in town, going all the way back to the 1940s. The simple dog on a griddled split top roll (we'll take ours with a side of the house cheese sauce, for dipping) and a mound of expert-level fresh-cut fries, served with rich gravy, won't be the most sophisticated meal you'll ever eat in Burlington, but it'll probably be the one you want to eat again and again.

Virginia

Since the Great Depression, anybody with two nickels to rub together has found themselves welcome to one of ten counter seats at the Bullington family's Texas Tavern in downtown Roanoke, where the hot dogs are still accessibly priced, and best ordered "all the way," with the house chili sauce, onions, and a unique mustard-based relish that's popular enough they sell it by the quart to go. For a real trip back in time, wash it all down with a glass of buttermilk.

Washington

"If you don't like it, then Matt's an idiot," goes the house mantra at Matt's Hot Dogs in Seattle's largely industrial Georgetown neighborhood, mostly still a safe space away from the shiny new-style city that at least until this year seemed so intent on erasing the old. Since the early 1990s, this casual take-out joint has been pulling off the unusual trick of being quite competent at a variety of notable regional dog styles, each built on a firm, all-beef, house recipe, no fillers foundation. All pair well with the house cheese fries.

Washington D.C.

Ben and Virginia Ali didn't invent the half smoke when they opened Ben's Chili Bowl on U Street back in 1958, but there's no disputing the work one of the most iconic restaurants in the nation's capital has done over the decades to preserve this unique bit of District food heritage. The house version of these snappy, smoky, and spicy sausage-dog hybrids, made with both beef and pork, are custom-stuffed up in (shh, don't tell) Baltimore, grilled and served with chili, mustard and onions.

West Virginia

The state that loves local hot dog culture enough to throw it an annual festival is pretty clear on what it likes—around here, hot dogs very often are served with chili, onions, mustard, and a ribbon of coleslaw on top for contrast and texture. Wherever you find these beauties, they will typically be delicious, but a pilgrimage to the magnificent, slightly off-its-rocker Hillbilly Hot Dogs in rural Lesage should definitely be a part of the adventure. Here, chili comes on a great deal many things, but their quality West Virginia dog allows crunchy-cool slaw take center stage, along with mustard and onions.

(Video) Every Style of Hot Dog We Could Find Across the US

Wisconsin

Like you had to be reminded, but America's Dairyland runs on bratwurst, when it's not running on cheese, not that you have to work too terribly hard to find a great all-beef dog—Chicago's just over the state line, after all. With such proximity to greatness, don't bother resorting to pale imitations. Instead, head to Benji's, the Milwaukee area's resident classic Jewish deli, where where you can get a great Reuben, a great hot dog, or you can have the Benji, which is essentially a Reuben—corned beef, kraut, Swiss, the works—on top of a Vienna Beef dog, boiled, grilled, or ripped. The 1000 Island dressing typically comes on the side, like a dare—ours doesn't stay there for every long.

Wyoming

Known for hearty prime rib dinners in a casual, Western-style diner environment, The Albany in Cheyenne, which began life as a hotel back in 1905, is currently a restaurant, a bar, and a pretty great liquor store. At lunch, it's also where you'll find the city's finest chili dog, served with a homemade sauce and plenty of onions and cheese on the side

FAQs

What state is best known for hot dogs? ›

There you have it: The U.S. city where hot dogs are the most popular is none other than Buffalo, New York. Forget chicken wings; it's all about those juicy links.

What is the number one hot dog in America? ›

The Best Hot Dog Brands, at a Glance
  • Best Hot Dogs Overall: Sabrett Skinless Beef Frankfurters.
  • Best Fancy Hot Dogs: KC Cattle Company Wagyu Gourmet Hot Dogs.
  • Best Hot Dogs for a Crowd: Harry & David Beef Frankfurters.
  • Most Nostalgic Hot Dogs: Best's Beef Frankfurters.
12 May 2022

Why do hotdogs come in 10 and buns in 8 Bulletproof Monk? ›

Quotes. Kar : The reason hot dogs come in packages of ten but hot dog buns come in packages of just eight is so you'll always need more buns for your hot dogs. Because no matter how much you get, how much you achieve, how many times you win... You can never, ever let yourself feel like it's enough.

What's the most famous hot dog? ›

Of the many hot dog styles around the US inspired by Brooklyn's early Greek immigrants, Detroit's Coney Island dog is the most famous. It's a hot dog on a steamed bun that's lathered in a beanless, meaty chili and topped with chopped white onions and mustard.

Which US city eats most hot dogs? ›

Los Angeles residents consume more hot dogs than any other city (about 30 million pounds), beating out New York and Dallas.

What are the best hot dogs to eat? ›

Don't skimp: Get the best.
  • Editor's Pick: Nathan's Famous Skinless Beef Franks. ...
  • The Umami Dog: Hebrew National Beef Franks. ...
  • The Over-the-Top Flavor Dog: Oscar Mayer Uncured Original Wieners. ...
  • The Snappiest Dog: 365 Everyday Value Organic Uncured Grass-Fed Beef Hot Dog. ...
  • The Hot Dog We'd Skip: Ball Park Classic Franks.
10 Jun 2022

What's the difference between a Chicago hot dog and a New York hot dog? ›

Chicago. The possible antithesis to New York dogs, Chicago dogs are layered with yellow mustard, dark green relish, chopped raw onion, pickle spear, sport peppers, tomato slices and topped with a dash of celery salt and served in a poppy seed bun.

What is the oldest hot dog stand in America? ›

Oldest Hot Dog Stand: Nathan's Famous 1310 Surf Ave., Coney Island, Brooklyn.

What is a NYC hot dog? ›

All-beef hot dogs are topped with a homemade onion relish, sauerkraut, and brown mustard, then nestled into a soft hot dog bun. The hot dogs are boiled just like they are on the street cart, but you can also grill them or cook them on a skillet.

Why do hot dogs and buns not match? ›

The uneven hot dog-to-bun packaging ratio is weird, but according to the National Hot Dog Sausage Council (NHDSC), the reason isn't as strange as you may think. The NHDSC, which was founded in 1994, explained the mismatched packaging is because of the way these items were sold many years ago.

Are hot dog and hamburger buns the same? ›

A hamburger is a round patty put into round hamburger buns along with condiments; a hot dog is an oblong sausage inside oblong hot dog buns, also with condiments.

What country eats the most hotdogs? ›

Germany (1.5M tonnes) constituted the country with the largest volume of sausage consumption, comprising approx.

Who sell the most hot dogs? ›

We do know that the southern United States eats the bulk of all hot dogs each year - more than any other region of the country. Residents of New York City purchase more hot dogs at retail outlets (grocery stores, supermarkets, etc.) than any other city in the country - over $101 billion dollars worth.

Do French eat hot dogs? ›

While hot dogs are classic American fare, many street vendors and legendary chefs in France have taken it upon themselves to implement French cooking techniques when approaching this handheld favorite.

What is the hot dog capital of the world? ›

New Castle is known both as the “hot dog capital of the world” and the “fireworks capital of America.” Its chili dogs are the product of Greek immigrants who came to New Castle in the early 20th century and established restaurants along with their homes.

What state eats the most hamburgers? ›

Oklahomans lead the nation when it comes to the number of hamburgers we eat.

Can a diabetic eat hot dogs? ›

Yes, you can enjoy hot dogs and hamburgers on your diabetic diet.

Is it healthier to boil hot dogs? ›

Boiling helps to plump up the hot dog and leaches out some of the salt. The third technique is to place the hot dog on the grill directly. This is a mistake as the hot dog will split in the heat, burst out the flavor and become tough, dry and blackened. Not healthy!

Is hot dog healthy? ›

Can hot dogs be a part of a healthy diet? Regardless of moderation, hot dogs are not exactly healthy. The World Health Organization's International Agency for Cancer Research (IARC) reported ham, hot dogs and other processed meats may contribute to colorectal cancer. Hot dogs also are high in saturated fat and sodium.

What is a Texas hot dog? ›

In its simple, classic form, the Hot Texas Wiener is an all-beef hot dog "blanched" or par-cooked in 350-degree vegetable oil in a fry basket for a few minutes, cooked by another hot vegetable-oil bath in a tilted steel pan until done, and then placed in a bun, topped (in strict order) with a spicy, ballpark-style ...

What do New Yorkers put on their hot dogs? ›

Unlike your typical hot dog topped with ketchup and mustard, the New York Hot Dog is topped with sauerkraut, onion sauce, and spicy brown mustard. To say it's packed full of flavor is an understatement!

Why do you not put ketchup on a hot dog? ›

Ketchup smothers the flavor of the hot dog because ketchup makers add sugar to their products. That takes the edge off the highly acidic tomatoes, but it takes the edge off everything else too.

What brand of hot dogs does Coney Island use? ›

Feltman's critically-acclaimed all beef hot dogs are naturally smoked in a lamb casing with no-nitrates added. They have been rated as the best in New York City by Gothamist and New York Magazine; the best in Coney Island by the New York Post, and #6 nationwide by The Daily Meal.

Why is it called hot dog? ›

The German immigrants brought not just sausages but also dachshunds when they came to the United States. The name 'hot dog' possibly began as a joke about their thin, long and small dogs. In fact, the Germans called their dish 'dachshund sausages' or 'little dog', thus connecting the term 'dog' to the hot dog.

Who invented the hotdog? ›

Frankfurt claims the frankfurter was invented there over 500 years ago, in 1484, eight years before Columbus set sail for America. But the people of Vienna (Wien, in German) say they are the true originators of the “wienerwurst.”

What is a depression hot dog? ›

Many food historians claim the Depression Dog is the original Chicago hot dog, minus the pickle and junk that arrived later. And indeed, it seems truer to the supposedly unpretentious heart of the Midwest than a Chicago hot dog. The Depression Dog holds onion and relish and mustard and sport peppers and that's it.

What is on a Chicago dog? ›

So, just what is on a Chicago style dog? Well, it starts with a steamed poppy seed bun and an all-beef frankfurter. Then it's topped with yellow mustard, bright green relish, fresh chopped onions, juicy red tomato wedges, a kosher-style pickle spear, a couple of spicy sport peppers and finally, a dash of celery salt.

What is an American hot dog? ›

A hot dog (less commonly spelled hotdog) is a food consisting of a grilled or steamed sausage served in the slit of a partially sliced bun. The term hot dog can also refer to the sausage itself. The sausage used is a wiener (Vienna sausage) or a frankfurter (Frankfurter Würstchen, also just called frank).

How much did a gallon of milk cost in 1972? ›

In 1972, the cost of milk was only 52 cents a gallon.

How much did a loaf of bread cost in 1978? ›

Buying power of $20.00 since 1977
YearUSD ValueInflation Rate
1977$20.00-
1978$21.045.22%
1979$23.3010.71%
1980$25.7910.71%
42 more rows

How much did bacon cost in 1970? ›

In 1970, a pound of bacon cost 95 cents, a dozen eggs cost 60 cents, bread was priced at 24 cents, 10 pounds of potatoes was 90 cents, coffee was 91 cents and a gallon of orange juice cost 86 cents.

Why are hot dogs sold in 10 packs? ›

The ones in the grocery store are 10 to the pound. One hot dog usually weighs around 1.6 ounces so 10 became the magic number to get a pound. This large-scale manufacturing is why most of us buy hot dogs — and hot dog buns — in grocery stores today. And usually those hot dogs are sold in packs of 10.

How much do NYC hot dog vendors make? ›

According to street vendor advocacy groups, average vendors make $14,000 to $16,000 a year after they've paid for their (likely illegal) permits and received a few tickets.

Why is one side of a hot dog bun bigger than the other? ›

The extra thickness at the bottom would help prevent the bun from tearing in two when you stick your wiener in it.

What is healthier hot dog or hamburger? ›

From an overall perspective, the hamburger is a better option. A 4-ounce hamburger has about six times the amount of protein as a hot dog, with about a quarter of the sodium. Nutritionally, that's a better balance.

Why hamburgers are better than hotdogs? ›

While they lost the calorie round, hamburgers pack way more nutrition into their patties than hot dogs. Ground beef has more protein, more iron, more zinc, and far less sodium. It also contains vitamin B12 and selenium (an antioxidant).

What is more popular hot dogs or hamburgers? ›

The American backyard cookout is incomplete without two iconic foods: hamburgers and hot dogs.
...
The Statistics.
HamburgersHot Dogs
71 percent of all beef consumed in restaurants is in the form of a burger.Most hot dogs are sold eight to a pound. Approximately 35 percent are offered in 10 to the pound packages.
5 more rows
6 Feb 2020

What brand are New York hotdogs? ›

Welcome to Sabrett®, New York's # 1 Hot Dog, renowned for fabulous taste and consistency and the famous snap! of their natural casing, all-beef frankfurters.

What city puts sauerkraut on hot dogs? ›

In New York, the simple dog reigns supreme. A hot dog in the Big Apple is traditionally topped with a spicy brown mustard and either sauerkraut or onions sautéed with tomato paste. Atlanta residents typically top their savory dogs with a cool, creamy, crunchy slaw. It's a southern thing—you'll see.

What state is known for chili cheese dogs? ›

Texas wiener

It is considered a unique regional hot dog style. From its origins, the invention spread to the Pennsylvania cities of Scranton and Philadelphia.

What day do Americans eat the most hot dogs? ›

Americans love eating hot dogs on the 4th of July

In fact, the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council estimates that a whopping 150 million hot dogs are consumed on the 4th of July alone — that is enough hot dogs to stretch across the country, from Washington D.C. to Los Angeles, more than five times!

Do Americans love hot dogs? ›

Of the 90 percent of Americans who say they prepare hot dogs, 63 percent say grilling is their favorite way to cook a hot dog, far outpacing other cooking methods such as steaming (12 percent), microwaving (9 percent) or frying in a pan (8 percent).

How fast can an average person eat a hot dog? ›

Using the body mass and height of the winners combined with the mass of an average Nathan's hot dog, Smoliga's mathematical modeling revealed that humans are theoretically capable of consuming 832 grams of delicious hot dog matter in 10 minutes, the equivalent of 84 hot dogs.

What is America's favorite hot dog? ›

1. Chicago dog from Chicago. There's no better form of tube of meat between a bun than the Chicago dog. It's made with an all-beef, natural casing dog topped with peppers, mustard, relish, onion, tomato, celery salt, and a whole pickle spear.

What city is known for their hotdogs? ›

There you have it: The U.S. city where hot dogs are the most popular is none other than Buffalo, New York. Forget chicken wings; it's all about those juicy links.

What is the number one hot dog in America? ›

The Best Hot Dog Brands, at a Glance
  • Best Hot Dogs Overall: Sabrett Skinless Beef Frankfurters.
  • Best Fancy Hot Dogs: KC Cattle Company Wagyu Gourmet Hot Dogs.
  • Best Hot Dogs for a Crowd: Harry & David Beef Frankfurters.
  • Most Nostalgic Hot Dogs: Best's Beef Frankfurters.
12 May 2022

Where are the best hot dogs in the United States? ›

The 10 Best Hot Dogs in the USA
  1. Wolfy's Hot Dogs (Chicago) If you're looking for the perfect Chicago hot dog, Wolfy's is the place to go. ...
  2. Crif Dogs (New York) ...
  3. Dat Dog (New Orleans) ...
  4. Dirt Dog Inc (Los Angeles) ...
  5. Denali Doghouse (Alaska) ...
  6. Biker Jim's (Colorado) ...
  7. El Guero Canelo (Arizona) ...
  8. Pincho Factory (Florida)

What is the California hot dog? ›

California Hot Dogs are such a delicious twist on the ever popular hot dogs and the flavor of the creamy avocado, and feta cheese gives this hot dog the taste Summer is made for.

What is the oldest hot dog stand in America? ›

Oldest Hot Dog Stand: Nathan's Famous 1310 Surf Ave., Coney Island, Brooklyn.

What's the difference between a Chicago hot dog and a New York hot dog? ›

Chicago. The possible antithesis to New York dogs, Chicago dogs are layered with yellow mustard, dark green relish, chopped raw onion, pickle spear, sport peppers, tomato slices and topped with a dash of celery salt and served in a poppy seed bun.

What is a NYC hot dog? ›

All-beef hot dogs are topped with a homemade onion relish, sauerkraut, and brown mustard, then nestled into a soft hot dog bun. The hot dogs are boiled just like they are on the street cart, but you can also grill them or cook them on a skillet.

Are Costco hot dogs good? ›

Taste. These Costco beef wieners are extremely flavorful and the seasoning is delicious. The casing is very soft, so none of that tough chewy casing. They taste just like the Costco food court hot dogs and they also remind me of a stadium style hot dog or one you could get at a carnival.

Do French eat hot dogs? ›

While hot dogs are classic American fare, many street vendors and legendary chefs in France have taken it upon themselves to implement French cooking techniques when approaching this handheld favorite.

Where is the hot dog capital of the world? ›

New Castle is known both as the “hot dog capital of the world” and the “fireworks capital of America.” Its chili dogs are the product of Greek immigrants who came to New Castle in the early 20th century and established restaurants along with their homes.

What brand are New York hotdogs? ›

Welcome to Sabrett®, New York's # 1 Hot Dog, renowned for fabulous taste and consistency and the famous snap! of their natural casing, all-beef frankfurters.

What is a hot dog called in England? ›

Copyright is correct that we would call then "hot dogs" or "frankfurters"; we would also call them "franks" or "wieners." Americans don't use the term "bangers" at all, so I'll leave it to a British person to tell you whether they are bangers in British English.

What is a Boston hot dog? ›

New England Dog aka Boston Style Hot Dog

Also known as the Fenway Frank since it is served at the legendary Fenway Park, this hot dog is boiled and grilled to perfection. Served in a toasted New England bun, it is topped with mustard and relish.

What is an American hot dog? ›

A hot dog (less commonly spelled hotdog) is a food consisting of a grilled or steamed sausage served in the slit of a partially sliced bun. The term hot dog can also refer to the sausage itself. The sausage used is a wiener (Vienna sausage) or a frankfurter (Frankfurter Würstchen, also just called frank).

What brand of hot dogs does Coney Island use? ›

Feltman's critically-acclaimed all beef hot dogs are naturally smoked in a lamb casing with no-nitrates added. They have been rated as the best in New York City by Gothamist and New York Magazine; the best in Coney Island by the New York Post, and #6 nationwide by The Daily Meal.

Why is it called hot dog? ›

The German immigrants brought not just sausages but also dachshunds when they came to the United States. The name 'hot dog' possibly began as a joke about their thin, long and small dogs. In fact, the Germans called their dish 'dachshund sausages' or 'little dog', thus connecting the term 'dog' to the hot dog.

Who invented the hotdog? ›

Frankfurt claims the frankfurter was invented there over 500 years ago, in 1484, eight years before Columbus set sail for America. But the people of Vienna (Wien, in German) say they are the true originators of the “wienerwurst.”

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