Foodie Friday: Hot Diggety! It’s the Great American Hot Dog

Whether at a ballpark, fresh off the grill, or from an umbrella-covered stand in a bustling city, Americans love hot dogs.

Today, we’ll look at unique regional styles of hot dogs and discover some top-of-the-game restaurants to enjoy this favorite summer staple.

New York

Even with all the high-brow options available to locals and visitors alike in one of the world’s greatest food cities, sometimes New Yorkers just want a hot dog. The most familiar version of the classic New York City hot dog you’ll find is a Sabrett, Nathan’s, or Hebrew National. Don’t expect any ketchup on these franks: mustard and sauerkraut or sweet onions in a tomato-based sauce are the condiments of choice for hot dogs in the Big Apple. You can try a tasty New York style hot dog from many vendors throughout the city, including the original Nathan’s Famous at Coney Island or at the Lower East Side neighborhood favorite, Katz’s Deli.


Ask someone from the Great Lakes State—particularly Detroit—how they like their hot dogs, and they’ll likely tell you Coney style: a German, natural-casing, beef-and-pork dog in a steamed bun, smothered in soupy beef-heart chili sauce, tangy yellow mustard, and raw, diced white onions. Check out the history here of how the Coney dog became a regional sensation for Detroit locals and beyond. And enjoy a true Detroit Coney dog for yourself at Lafayette Coney Island.


Little known to the rest of the US, the Sonoran dog is an Arizona culinary treasure. Next time you’re in the Phoenix area, try the specialty hot dog that originated in nearby Sonora, Mexico. The Sonoran dog is typically prepared by wrapping the hot dog in bacon, cooking on a grill or griddle, then fitting it into a pocket-like bun and topping it with a mouth-watering combination of grilled onions, beans, tomatoes, jalapeno salsa, mayo, mustard, and fresh crema. You can dig into a flavorful and authentic Sonoran dog at El Guero Canelo in Tuscon.

Washington, DC

The nation’s capital is an undeniably robust food city. For those hungry for a true American favorite in DC, try a half-smoke: half-pork, half-beef sausage that’s more coarsely ground than its counterparts in other cities. The classic preparation tops the sausage with spicy chili, mustard, and onions. Enjoy one while cheering in the stands at Nationals Park or at local joints like Ben’s Chili Bowl.



The Windy City is known for all kinds of great American foods, including their legendary hot dogs. You’ll find classic Chicago dogs starting with Vienna Beef or Red Hot Chicago all-beef franks, steamed and then tucked into steamed poppy seed buns. But the real magic is in the toppings: bright neon-green sweet pickle relish, chopped raw white onions, juicy sliced tomatoes, pickled sport peppers, a whole dill pickle spear, and finished with a dash of celery salt. Taste it for yourself at Chicago-area establishments like Superdawg.


Whether you’re chowing down on American classics like the hot dog or trying something more adventurous this weekend, be sure to savor some great flavors wherever you find them.

Happy Foodie Friday!


And, of course, for something a little weird…

What’s the fun wearing a dress when you could embody a popular food? A true junior Foodie in the making, one little girl decided to forgo the frilly outfits of her class Princess Day in favor of dressing up like a hot dog instead.

Posted in: Food and Drink, Foodie Friday

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