Hotdog Hacks – 7 Ways to Upgrade Your Hotdog

Summertime is prime time for grilling and hotdogs are ideal for a fast meal. However, they can get boring if all you put on them is ketchup and mustard. Try these easy hotdog hacks and upgrade your grilling game to the next level of deliciousness. You may be wondering how on earth you can make a hotdog into anything more than meat on a bun, but let me assure you, these seven fun upgrades will have you going up for more.


1. Different Buns

One of the fastest and easiest ways to upgrade your next hotdog dinner is to change those buns up. Gourmet buns from a bakery like COBS Bread, egg buns, sesame seed, pretzel buns, or New England hotdog buns that look like a super thick slice of bread. The brilliance of the New England hotdog bun is that they toast up nicely when buttered, which will add an extra layer of delight to your next hotdog meal. You can also try wrapping your dogs in puff pastry, or creating a weave like a piecrust. These techniques are great for crowds.


2. Anyway You Slice It

Slice those hotdogs into different shapes to produce an upgraded eating experience. Go with a classic crosshatch pattern to increase surface area for that perfect char, you can also do slits – but watch because those wieners will curl as they heat up. One of the best ways to ensure maximum hotdog to condiment retention is to slice yourself a spiral-dog. While there are devices to do this cut for you, it is easy to achieve with just a wooden skewer and a kitchen knife.

Feature - Chili Cheese Hotdos on COBS Bread Gourmet Hotdog Buns

How to cut a spiral dog

  1. Carefully thread a wooden skewer through the length of the hotdog.

  2. Placing your blade at a slight angle, slice into the hotdog until you hit the skewer.

  3. Roll the hotdog away from you while holding the knife steady, it should slice a spiral into the hotdog without cutting all the way through thanks to the skewer.

  4. Try This Spiral Dog Recipe


3. Low And Slow?!

While you’re grilling up those delicious dogs, remember to slow it down a little. Don’t just slap those hotdogs over direct heat and char them until they’re wrinkly and burnt. Use a lower heat, and even grill them using the indirect technique so that they plump up a little before hitting them with a sear. You will have yourself an infinitely better hotdog that way. It only takes an extra couple of minutes.

PRO TIP: Get a quality hotdog, when you go shopping. Thick and juicy ones will satisfy far better than those slinky-linkies.



4. Now You’re Just Being Saucy

Slowing down the grilling process also gives you time to get a little saucy with your hotdogs. Brush some BBQ sauce, honey, mustard, or hoisin sauce onto the dogs as they roast and plump. This will completely change the dogs’ dynamic and produce some new flavor profiles. This is advantageous because you can start complimenting these newfound flavors with the toppings to create themed hotdogs.


5. No Sour Faces With These Toppings

Pickles! You can pickle just about anything on earth, and adding some to your next hotdog will definitely upgrade the gourmet factor, and don’t discount relish either. Pickled red onion, pickled jalapeño, pickled hot peppers, pickled beets, pickled garlic, pickled tomatoes, olives, capers, sauerkraut, horseradish, and even pickled mango can be added to your hotdogs for some gourmet BBQ funtimes!

Pickled Onion
Garlic Dill Pickles


6. So Saucy Part Two

Condiments like ketchup, mustard, and mayonnaise are all fine and dandy, but when you’re going for gourmet, consider topping your fancy hotdogs in a manner more befitting the theme. Try cheese sauces, Thousand Island dressing, and garlic sauce. Spice things up a little, because some like it hot, with sriracha, buffalo sauce, or spicy Thai chili sauce.


7. Betcha’ Can’t Top That!

You could be one of those people who don’t enjoy the sour-salty-crunch of a well-made pickle, or you may want a little more than just that on top of your hotdog. Specialty toppings like coleslaw, grilled corn, cilantro, guacamole, grilled pineapple, crumbled or shredded beef, pulled pork, zesty chili, bacon, bleu cheese, crushed Doritos, salsa, caramelized onions, and the list goes on! Anything goes when it comes to topping a gourmet hotdog, the only limitations are your imagination and the capacity of the bun.

With this guide, hacking your hotdog for a gourmet meal is easier than ever. Tell us about your favorite combinations by using the hashtags #GourmetHotdog and #NapoleonGrill and sharing on our social pages like Grills Facebook and Grills Instagram using the hashtags #GrillBasketBBQ and #NapoleonGrill. Happy Grilling!

Not Sure Where To Start? - Try This Gourmet Hotdog Recipe

cheese hot dog