A hot dog is never just a hotdog in America. Depending on where you are, there is bound to be a regional variation to make your stomach growl. Hotdogs are some of the most quintessentially American meals you will ever have. It’s part of the big three: pizzas, burgers, and hotdogs.
When you’re in America, until you’ve had every region’s hotdog, you haven’t seen it all. Each style will offer different flavors and experiences. All you have to do is take your pick or enjoy them all.
Here are the different hotdogs you’ll find in the land of the free:
New York Dog
New York’s hotdogs are simple, straightforward, and unfailingly classic. It consists of the usual hotdog and bun, topped with mustard and sauerkraut and sometimes ketchup. You’ll find these in almost every corner, with street vendors barking about their delicious franks. The smell alone will have you reaching for your pocket.
The Chicago Dog
The windy city offers up another classic style hotdog. A Chicago dog is made up of a Vienna beef dog in a poppy seed bun. It’s topped with mustard, white onions, green sweet pickle relish, a dill pickle, tomatoes, pickled sport peppers, and a dash of celery salt. When you take your first bite, you’ll understand why Chicago’s hotdogs are unmatched worldwide.
Fenway Park is home to more than just the Red Sox. It also houses the famous Fenway Frank. This hotdog is made out of beef and pork that’s boiled and then grilled. After that, it’s laid on top of a New-England style split-top bun. The toppings are simply mustard and relish. A ball game in Boston isn’t complete without one of these.
The Sonoran Dog was invented in 1994 by a man called Benjamin Galaz in Tuscon. This hotdog can be considered Mexican style as it also originated from Hermosillo, the capital of Sonora. It is a grilled bacon-wrapped hotdog in a steamed bolillo bun.
People have taken to topping it off with various things, but the most common are pinto beans, chopped tomatoes and onions, mustard, mayo, green sauce, shredded cheese, avocados, and jalapenos. It is truly a loaded and jam-packed meal of a hotdog.
Seattle’s version of a perfect hotdog consists of a frankfurter or bratwurst cut in the middle for easier consumption. Typically, the bun or hoagie roll it goes in is toasted and coated with a thick and generous helping of cream cheese.
The bun and the cream cheese make all the difference in this hot dog, giving you a mouthful of something familiar yet wholly different. You’ll often find Seattle dogs topped with sauteed onion, jalapenos, cabbage, relish, sriracha, barbecue sauce, and salsa.
The Red Snapper
Maine’s signature hotdog keeps up with the theme of red. As it is most famous for its lobsters and lobsters, it seems fitting that their hotdog should also reference what the place is renowned for. The Red Snapper is a natural casing of beef and pork frank that has been dyed red. It’s placed in a toasted bun and topped with classic yellow mustard. While they’re more famous for their lobster, don’t discount this good dog just yet.
The Bottom Line
There are a million ways to enjoy a good hotdog. From the bun to the meat and the toppings, the possibilities are endless. Everywhere you go in America, there is something different to try. Hotdogs are never just hotdogs. They represent the identity and culture of a place. You gain so much experience and knowledge just based on the regional food each place has to offer. So be sure to keep your mind and your stomachs open.
If you’re craving hotdogs and more, head on over to George’s Gyros Spot. Our restaurant is located in Chesterton, Indiana. We serve Chicago dogs, Italian beef, gyros, polish dogs, and cheeseburgers. You can call in and pick up, drive-thru, dine-in, call ahead, and carry out!