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Make Lunch Fun With Hot Dog Caterpillars!

Updated on September 30, 2015

We all like to eat, right? So do our kids. But our kids like to eat fun stuff, 'cause regular food is just... well... boring. So, we can feed them caterpillars! That'll be fun!

No, not regular caterpillars, of course... hot dog caterpillars. It's a great alternative to the classic hot dog octopus. Best of all, it's super quick to make and the kids love it.

And there's certainly nothing wrong with being a big kid yourself - enjoy!

Cook Time

  • Prep time: 5 min
  • Ready in: 5 min
  • Yields: 1 hot dog caterpillar

Ingredients

  • 1 Hot Dog
  • Dipping Sauce, optional

Instructions

  1. With a curved paring knife, cut hot dog most of the way through, as though making quarter-inch cross-sections. Notice that the curvature of the blade allows us to make contact with the cutting board without actually cutting through the hot dog fully. The key is to keep the bottom surface intact while allowing separation and curvature. Don't have such a curved knife? Use a regular one... just go a little slower and stop yourself before you hit the cutting board.
  2. Lay hot dog on microwave-safe plate and cover with a moistened paper towel (to prevent any unexpected splattering). Microwave on high for 10 to 15 seconds.
  3. Flip hot dog, microwave again for another 10 to 15 seconds. You'll notice the heat beginning to force the hot dog to plump up and curve a bit.
  4. Repeat heating process as necessary - shouldn't take more than another couple tries - until you are satisfied with the hot dog's curvature. Remember to carefully (it will be hot!) flip the hot dog with each heating cycle.
  5. Transfer hot dog to serving plate - you don't want to give your kid that searing hot plate from the microwave, do you? Prop up one end of the hot dog caterpillar with a pair of toothpicks, as though giving it front legs. Optionally, you can use small pieces of cheese to stabilize the toothpicks on the plate.
  6. Decorate caterpillar as you see fit. I like to use a small mustard bottle for details, simply because it's so easy to squirt just a little out for eyes or dots on the caterpillar's back.
  7. Serve with a dipping sauce, if desired.

Get Creative

For extra fun, include some miniature veggie or fruit kabobs, some Cracker Stackers, or other similar "healthy" sides. Dress up the caterpillar with a lemon collar... Use half a tomato and a length of cucumber to make a veggie mushroom (Alice in Wonderland reference?)... Just have fun with it. The more fun you have, the more fun it'll be for your kid!

Made with Bar-S Classic Franks

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 hot dog (42g)
Calories 120
Calories from Fat90
% Daily Value *
Fat 10 g15%
Saturated fat 3 g15%
Carbohydrates 4 g1%
Sugar 2 g
Fiber 0 g
Protein 3 g6%
Cholesterol 35 mg12%
Sodium 380 mg16%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

What do you think?

5 stars from 3 ratings of Hot Dog Caterpillars

Comments

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    • Eddie Dagstanyan profile image
      Author

      Eddie Dagstanyan 4 years ago from California

      Thank you, Au fait! I appreciate the rating, the votes, and share. I'll write an octopus hub for you soon. :)

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 4 years ago from North Texas

      What a great idea for summer, and you arranged the plate so cute! I'd be interested in reading about the octopus idea -- I've never heard of that before either.

      Gave you 5 more stars, voted up and useful, and pinned to my 'Children' board.

    • Eddie Dagstanyan profile image
      Author

      Eddie Dagstanyan 4 years ago from California

      Thank you Heidi and Susan. Us big kids need a little fun food every now and again, too! :D

    • Vacation Trip profile image

      Susan 4 years ago from India

      Great Idea. It looks awesome. Thank you for sharing.

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 4 years ago from Chicago Area

      How cute! I don't have kids, but might want to try those for us "big kids" in the house. :)

    • Eddie Dagstanyan profile image
      Author

      Eddie Dagstanyan 4 years ago from California

      Thank you, pinto2011! You're very kind. :)

    • pinto2011 profile image

      Subhas 4 years ago from New Delhi, India

      HI Eddie Dagstanyan! I will only say that you have just invented a new genre of its kind. Lunch would never be such a fun but for your suggestions. Great tips.

    • Eddie Dagstanyan profile image
      Author

      Eddie Dagstanyan 4 years ago from California

      I'm glad I could bring a smile to your faces. I had fun making it and the kids certainly had fun eating it... :)

    • Careermommy profile image

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Wow, what a great treat that my kids will love. Very creative!

    • Suzie HQ profile image

      Suzanne Ridgeway 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Hi Eddie,

      Love this cute idea and your mushroom is brilliant! Could see how kids would find this caterpillar lunch so appealing, I do! Love your creative idea and nice to see a curved knife use even though I don't have one. voted up, useful interesting, shared and pinned - nice job!

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 4 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      That's a cute idea, thanks for sharing the hot dog caterpillars.