A Million Ways to Heat A Hot Dog
OK, there may not be a million ways, but there sure are a lot of ways to heat your hot dogs. Just remember, hot dogs are already cooked before they are packaged so all you really need to do is heat it.
Grilling – A national survey showed that 60% of American’s prefer their hot dogs grilled, over boiling, steaming or microwaving. To get the perfect grilled hot dog, place your dogs on a grill over medium heat and turn as soon as one side starts to brown. Watch the hot dogs carefully and turn frequently as they tend to brown quickly. Two to three minutes on each “side” should be sufficient. Total heating time should be about 8-12 minutes. If frozen, heating times will be slightly longer.
Deep Frying – Many restaurants like to deep fry their hot dogs to give them a special crispy outside and a soft, moist interior. This method of cooking is especially suited for hot dogs that have been dipped in batter, rolled in dough, or rolled in bacon. If you have a deep frier you can do this at home, but we don’t recommend trying to deep fry hot dogs in oil on your stove top. It’s messy and dangerous
Baking or Roasting – This is our preferred method for making hot dogs that have been rolled in bacon or dough. It’s relatively fast, cleanup is easy and there’s little danger of spilling hot oil. Just heat your oven to 375. Put your hot dogs on a baking sheet or other oven proof container and cook for 10 minutes if the hot dogs are plain. If wrapped in bacon, cook until the bacon appears to be getting crispy. Every 10 minutes or so roll the hot dogs so the bacon gets evenly cooked.
Steaming – To steam your hot dogs, fill a Dutch oven fitted with a steamer rack, or a bamboo steamer with enough liquid to reach about 1/2 inch below the steamer rack. You want to avoid having boiling water bubbling up onto your hot dogs. Bring your water to a boil, reduce heat to low, add your Hot Dogs to the steamer basket. Cover tightly and steam 6-8 minutes or until your hot dogs are heated through. For authentic steamed hot dog buns, stack them on top of the dogs in the last minute of cooking time. BE CAREFUL WHEN YOU OPEN THE TOP, THE STEAM WILL BE VERY HOT.
Boiling – 30% of American’s like their hot dogs boiled. To boil a hot dog, bring the water to a boil, turn the water down until it stops boiling and you have a slight simmer. Place desired number of hot dogs into water and cook uncovered for 20 minutes. You can do this on a pan on your stove top or use a crockpot. You can add different types of seasoning agents to the water which enhances the flavor. My personal preference is to add a teaspoon of dehydrated onions and a teaspoon of liquid smoke. True hot dog aficionados say you should never put hot dogs in boiling water, but if you do wait to put the dogs in the water until after the water has come to a boil, then put them in and simmer for about five minutes or until the dogs floats.
Pan Frying – To pan fry your hot dogs, put about a tablespoon of oil into a frying pan and wait for it to sizzle. Carefully place your hot dogs in the pan. Be careful, the oil may splatter. As the hot dogs heat up, the color of the skin will change. and become slightly golden brown. Heat for roughly 2-3 minutes. While the hot dogs are frying you can flavor them by adding various sauces like BBQ sauce, Ketchup,etc. Once the hot dog is golden brown all over, pour some sauce into the pan and stir it around. Make sure the sausage is coated in it but don’t over cook as most sauces have a high sugar content and will burn if left on the heat too long.
Microwave – Hot dogs can be heated in the microwave oven. However, because the length of heating time depends on the power of your microwave, there is always a chance you will over heat your dog and make it chewy. As a result, real hot dog fans don’t recommend using a microwave and believe it should only be used if no other heating method is possible.