Welcome to the big top, people! Sure, most hot dogs could be described as good, tasty, or heck, sometimes even scrumptious (if you own a thesaurus). But, none of those words quite capture the high echelon we’re holding our frankfurters to today. Yep, it’s time we put together what can only be referred to as our ULTIMATE HOT DOG (a hush falls over the crowd!). We taste tested all the components, so trust us when we say these are the six essential ingredients for the best ever hot dog.
- Hebrew National Beef Franks
We stand by Hebrew National Beef Franks as the best hot dogs for a really good reason, and that reason is, well…Hebrew National Beef Franks are the best hot dogs! Good reason, right? In his rave review, Sporked contributor Danny Palumbo wrote that the dog is so juicy that it “starts to flavor the hot dog bun itself with its deliciously spiced beef juices.” Give that hot dog a gold medal!
Credit: Sarah Demonteverde / Amazon
- Nature’s Own Perfectly Crafted Brioche Style Hot Dog Buns
Time and again, we’ve asserted that the best hot dog buns by a mile are Nature’s Own Perfectly Crafted Brioche Style Hot Dog Buns, and we stand by it. These brioche buns are delicious, soft and chewy, and, most important of all, able to function as the glue holding this all-star dog together.
Credit: Ryan Martin / Amazon
- Kroger Yellow Mustard
Kroger Yellow Mustard is consistently topping our best mustard lists, so our ultimate hot dog would be remiss without it. Kroger brings the flavor full force with zing, zip, zest, or really any of your preferred “z” descriptors! On a milder sandwich, this mustard would be the clear superstar, but on our ultimate dog, Kroger’s simply blends in with the dream team we’ve assembled. Welcome to the squad, Kroger!
Credit: Sarah Demonteverde / Instacart
- Heinz Tomato Ketchup
Folks, you knew it would be the case: Heinz has it! Heinz Tomato Ketchup is the brand you think of whenever the red stuff is brought up, and for good reason…it’s the top of the heap! The best ketchup! Don’t come at us with any other brands, believe me, we’ve tried them! Slather some Heinz on your dog and thank us later! And, while you’re in a slathering mood, don’t forget to do it with sunscreen on your exposed skin. Nothing ruins your enjoyment of a hot dog like a sunburn!
Credit: Ryan Martin / Walmart
- Del Monte Sweet Pickle Relish
Made with real sugar, Del Monte Sweet Pickle Relish is the clear choice when selecting the best sweet relish on the shelf. Its flavor is enhanced by dehydrated peppers, onions, and mustard seeds. It officially converted Sporked’s Jordan Myrick from “a sweet relish hater to a sweet relish lover.”
Credit: Merc / Instacart
- Trader Joe’s “Ode to the Classic” Potato Chips
How about a little confetti for this party, huh? We highly recommend sprinkling a substantial handful of Trader Joe’s “Ode to the Classic” Potato Chips (the best plain potato chips) on top as the pièce de résistance of your ultimate dog. These chips are everything you’d want in a potato-based snack: They’re crispy, crunchy, light, and even nail the alarmingly specific taste profile of “bowling alley fries,” according to managing editor Gwynedd Stuart. Look at that! An incredible hot dog, with a free subliminal side of fries! You can’t beat that bargain!
Credit: Sarah Demonteverde / Sporked
The Hot Dog
The Chips (for crumbling)