What’s Your Favorite Regional US Hot Dog?

Holy Smokies! Who knew there were so many hot dog varieties in the United States? Let’s take a virtual food tour.

Hot Dogs are a staple worldwide (have you tried an Icelandic hot dog?!), but folks in the United States are super serious about their weiners. There are many different varieties, but every hot dog lover has a favorite. And every serious enthusiast has their rules (depending on where you’re from, it may be considered a crime to use ketchup). But here’s a little secret, you can like more than one style!

Some of my favorite hot dog styles are the overloaded Chicago Dog, DC’s Half-Smoked Dog (Ben’s Chili Bowl for life!), and of course, NYC’s Dirty Water Dog. And there are so many I need to try, like Cleveland’s Polish Boy, Cincinnati’s Skyline Chili Dog, Rhode Island’s Hot Weiner, and Kansas City’s (Missouri or Kansas) Rueben Dog.

I love almost every option on this list! So let’s go on a food tour across the US and check out your hot dog options:

Hot dogs are about as American as apple pie. It’s not uncommon for different states to offer their unique spins on classic American cuisine, and the hot dog industry is no exception. While some stands and shops take inspiration from other popular local cuisines for their toppings (like adding coleslaw or fish sticks to their classic franks and buns), others insist on layering, excluding, or adding ingredients to ensure their dogs remain a distinct staple to their regional style.