This is the best hot dog brand, according to a taste test

There are two types of people in the world: Those who prefer burgers and those who prefer hot dogs—and the divide becomes clear at any cookout.

Personally, I’m firmly in the hot dog camp. From the satisfying snap when you bite into the pillowy bun that lets you pile on practically any topping, I say hot dogs are the all-American summer meal. (After all, vendors don’t yell “Burgers! Burgers!” at ball games, right?)

Multiple popular brands of hot dogs in packaging.

At your next barbecue, you’ll want to make sure the best hot dogs are plated up next to loaded juicy burgers like these on the buffet. To find out which brand is best, our sister site Taste of Homegot together some hot dog aficionados for a blind taste test. Testers tried six popular brands of store-bought hot dogs and picked a few winners.

Honorable Mention: Great Value Uncured Beef Franks

The tasting panel deemed Walmart’s store brand as the “standard” hot dog. Though it was saltier than the other top picks, all testers agreed that we’d be happy to eat this at a cookout. If you’re hosting a larger event, Great Value’s beef franks are a budget-friendly choice (they’re as much as $1 cheaper than competitor brands!). Here are a few other affordable dinner ideas that are big on taste.

$2.74 for an 8-pack; available exclusively at Walmart.

Panel of testers sampling different brands to find the best hot dog.

Runner-Up: Hebrew National Beef Franks

Tasters agreed that this dog had the most unique flavor of the bunch, and with good reason. They discovered that Hebrew National packs its franks with garlic powder and paprika—two of the ten essential spices that every cook should own. The panel also found that these franks were firm and substantial, perfect for feeding even the most famished cornhole winner.

Price varies for a 6-pack; available at grocers nationwide.

Best in Show: Nathan’s Famous Skinless Beef Franks

Host of the annual 4th of July hot dog eating contest, this brand took the title of champion. The panel unanimously agreed that Nathan’s Famous combined all of the best qualities into a winning hot dog. It tasted flavorful—seasoned but not salty—and had a gentle snap with every bite. Nathan’s Famous has had plenty of time to perfect the recipe: The company has been serving up its signature franks for well over a century (kind of like these other legacy brands you need to know about).

$3.67 for an 8-pack; available at grocers nationwide.

The Bottom Line

If you’re at the store and need to choose the best hot dog for your outdoor cookout, any of these finalists would make a great choice. However, Nathan’s Famous may just win over the hamburger enthusiasts in your group.

What to Make Next

Muffin tin filled with condiments for party

While it’s easy to douse hot dogs in the standard squiggles of ketchup and mustard, here are a few more ways to make your franks the talk of the party:

  • DIY dogs: Set up a topping bar for guests to customize their dog. To keep organized, separate pre-prepped condiments using a muffin tin.
  • Wrap ’em up: Make meal-sized pigs-in-blankets with our Hot Dog Roll-Ups recipe. Refrigerated crescent rolls help this four-ingredient dish come together in a snap.
  • Pile on the chili: Put a pound of ground beef to work in this recipe for loaded Chili Coney Dogs. (Don’t skip the sprinkle of onions on top!)

Not a fan of any of these toppings? Try one of these 15 other ways to make a “boring” hot dog delicious.

Every product is independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

The post This Is the Best Hot Dog Brand, According to a Taste Test appeared first on Reader's Digest.

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Optional: Compress watermelon by placing in a vacuum sealed bag and removing all air and sealing closed. This compresses the juices in the watermelon and makes it look just like tuna poke.

Set oven to 350°F. Lay pine nuts in a single layer on a baking tray and toast in oven until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Remove and set aside to cool.

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Divide poke into 4 bowls. Top with seaweed salad, pine nuts, and sesame seeds. Finish with a sprinkle of Morton® Coarse sea salt.

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  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
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Directions: 

In a large bowl, gently toss together the mango, avocado, lime zest and juice, cilantro, jalapeño, red onion, salt, and several grinds of black pepper. 

Place the Hood Cottage Cheese with Cracked Pepper in a large shallow serving bowl (or divide among 4 to 6 smaller shallow bowls).

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