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9 Things To Know About Hot Dogs

Updated on August 14, 2019
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Margaret Minnicks is a health-conscious person who researches the health benefits of foods and drinks.

Hot dogs are very popular anytime during the year, but they are especially popular during the summer months.

Hot dogs are a favorite all-American food to eat on Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day. There are bound to be cookouts where hot dogs will be welcomed.

1. Hog dog or Hotdog?

Officially, hot dog should be written as two words. However, it is acceptable to also write hotdog as one word. It depends on people's personal preference. Keep in mind that most spell checkers prefer two words.

See the photos below where hot dog is written as two words on the package they come in and also on the hot dog roll package.

hot dogs = two words
hot dogs = two words

2. Other Names

The food in the shape of a dachshund that you eat on a bun has other names. Even though hot dog is the name that is used most of the time, there are other names for the food.

  • weiners
  • franks
  • frankfurters
  • red hots.

Hot dogs on a grill.
Hot dogs on a grill.

3. Ingredients

The sausage consists of a combination of beef and pork, all beef or chicken. Seasonings may include coriander, garlic, ground mustard, nutmeg, sugar, salt, and white pepper.

Hot dogs are fully cooked and served in partially sliced buns. The sizes range from the tiny cocktail ones to the long bun-size ones.

Is there a hot dog under there?
Is there a hot dog under there?

4. Hot Dog Toppings

There are many condiments and garnishes that can be used on top of a hot dog. Toppings include ketchup, mustard, onions, relish, coleslaw, chili, cheese, and. sauerkraut. Hot dogs can also be wrapped in bacon.

All the toppings are not used at once even though more than one of them can be used. Most people stick with mustard, onions, and relish. Once you use chili, it becomes a chili dog.

Some people like a corn dog (also spelled corndog) that's has been coated in a thick layer of cornmeal batter and deep fried. It can be dipped in mustard and eaten while it is hot.

Hot dogs chopped up in pork and beans
Hot dogs chopped up in pork and beans

5. Ways to eat hot dogs

Most of the time, hot dogs are eaten on a bun with preferred garnishes or eaten plain. They are so versatile that they can be grilled, boiled, broiled, fried, steamed, baked, rotisserie cooked, microwaved, or cooked on a stick over a campfire.

Some people pan fry and eat them for breakfast instead of eating bacon, sausage or ham. They can be chopped up in beans and served as pork and beans, put in scrambled eggs, a salad or added to spaghetti, macaroni and cheese and other dishes.

Did you know you can eat hot dogs chopped on top of a pizza?

Hot dog made into pizza
Hot dog made into pizza

6. Number of hot dogs eaten each year

The average American eats about 60 hot dogs throughout the year. Those in hot dog eating contests can eat that many at one time. Over 25 million of the sausages are sold at baseball stadiums each year. About 100 million grilled hot dogs are sold at 7-Eleven stores annually.

The National Hot Dog and Sausage Council records that Americans spend more than 1 billion dollars purchasing hot dogs from the grocery stores. That amount does not include the amount of money spent on hot dogs at baseball games, at holiday celebrations, and picnics.

7. Different versions

In some places, the hot dog is more than just a sausage on a bun. For instance, the New York dog is considered to be the king of hot dogs. It is served with spicy brown mustard, onions, and sauerkraut.

New Jersey's Italian hot dog is served with sautéed bell peppers, onions, and potatoes.

People in Chicago prefer theirs served on a poppyseed bun topped with mustard, tomatoes, onions, peppers, relish, dill pickles and sprinkled with celery salt.

8. Popular Brands

There are many brands of hot dogs, but here are the top ten.

  • Hebrew National
  • Nathan's
  • Ball Park
  • Salinetas
  • Sabrett
  • Vienna Beef
  • Hoffman's
  • Koegel's
  • Oscar Meyer
  • Best's

What is your favorite brand?

9. Nutrient Value of Hot Dogs

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, hot dogs can be made from turkey, beef or a combination of several different meat products.

Calories and Fat

  • A standard beef hot dog has 148 calories and 13 grams of fat and 5 grams of protein.
  • A turkey or chicken hot dog contains 100 calories, 7 grams of fat and 5.5 grams of protein.
  • A pork hot dog has 204 calories and 18 grams of fat and 9 grams of protein.

What All Hot Dogs Have in Common

All hot dogs have some things in common.

  • less than 2 grams of carbohydrates.
  • no fiber
  • small amounts of sugar
  • a trace amount of iron
  • trace amounts of some B vitamins
  • no vitamin C and a small amount of folate
  • a high amount of sodium between 380 and 513 milligrams

If you like hot dogs, a vegetarian hot dog or a low-sodium, low-fat version is a healthier option.


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