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7 Tastiest Gourmet Hot Dogs You've Never Tried

Top your dogs with the fireworks this 4th of July!
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Although they originated in Frankfurt, Germany, frankfurters are arguably the greatest of all American foods—and a perfect addition to your Independence Day cookout.

Hot dogs are so ubiquitous with summer, you might consider them too ho-hum for your grill. But the rise of craft hot dog chains specializing in fusion toppings like Dog Haus, in Pasadena, California, and Dat Dog, in New Orleans, have upped the ante and given these tube steaks a gourmet twist.

Ready to punch up your pigs in a blanket with some tasty toppings? Here are seven build-your-own options recommended by Claire Gastineau, kitchen manager and event coordinator for Destination Dogs in Philadelphia, whose menu includes 34 varieties that drew inspiration from "around the country and around the world." Don't forget to sign up for our newsletter to get the latest food news and recipes delivered straight to your inbox.

The Chicago Dog—a Windy City favorite

chicago dog
Waterbury Publications

Boil 1 all-beef hot dog for 5 minutes. Steam one poppyseed bun until warm and place the hot dog inside. Top with 1 tablespoon chopped raw onion, 4 tomato slices, 2 sport peppers (pickled green peppers), and a dash of celery salt. Check out these Best Hot Dogs and Sausages for Weight Loss.

The Italian Dog—popular in Philly, Jersey, and New York

the italian
Waterbury Publications

Grill 1 all-beef hot dog. Dice 1 small Yukon Gold potato and sauté in extra-virgin olive oil until fork-tender, about 5 minutes. Sauté half a sliced green bell pepper and one small sliced white onion in extra virgin olive oil until tender, about 3 minutes. Place the grilled hot dog in a torpedo roll and top with potatoes, peppers, and onions. Here's What Happens to Your Body When You Eat Hot Dogs.

The Oscar—hailing from Hollywood, LA

the Oscar
Waterbury Publications

Grill 1 chicken hot dog. Toast a whole-wheat baguette and spread with 1 teaspoon prepared chipotle mayonnaise. Place the hot dog in the baguette and top with a sliced up quarter of an avocado, 1/4 cup shredded fresh green cabbage, and 1 sliced scallion. Here's The #1 Way to Cook a Hot Dog, According to a Chef.

The Miami Dog—For when you're craving a dog with a Cuban flare

miami dog
Waterbury Publications

Grill 1 pork hot dog. Toast a hot dog bun and spread with 1 teaspoon mustard. Layer 1 slice each of deli ham, Swiss cheese, and salami on the bun. Place the hot dog on top of the deli slices on one side of the bun and 3 or 4 dill pickle slices on the other side.

The Bun Mi—A take on the Vietnamese banh mi sandwich

bun mi
Waterbury Publications

Grill 1 all-beef hot dog. Mix 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise with 1 teaspoon of sriracha and spread on a sliced baguette. Layer 5 slices of cucumber on the baguette and place the hot dog on top. Add 1/4 cup pickled carrots and daikon radish, 3 thin slices of jalapeño (or more to taste), and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of chopped cilantro.

The Waco Kid—A Texas-style wiener

waco kid
Waterbury Publications

Grill 1 all-beef hot dog and 1 hot dog bun. Place the hot dog in the bun and top with 1/3 cup of prepared beef chili, prepared cheese sauce to taste, ¼ cup crushed corn chips, 4 pickled jalapeños, 1 teaspoon sour cream, and 1 sliced scallion.

The Paul Bunyon—Popular in Minneapolis

Paul bunyon
Waterbury Publications

Lightly butter a hot dog bun and toast until golden. Slice an all-beef hot dog lengthwise (as though butterflying it) and grill, cut side down, for 2 minutes. Flip and grill another 2 minutes. Place the hot dog in the bun and top with 1/3 cup home fries, 1 crumbled slice of bacon, and one sunny-side-up egg. Drizzle with 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup. Season with black pepper.

Adapted from Eat This, Not That! summer 2020 issue, on sale at retail stores nationwide.

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