3 Ways to make hot dogs even better (yes, really)

Jul 15, 2015 at 4:00 p.m. ET

Hot dogs are a summer staple, no doubt about that, but the usual toppings of ketchup, mustard, sauerkraut (if it's a good party) and relish can get pretty boring after a while.

Come August and the 20th or so cookout of the summer, you're probably wanting nothing to do with a boring hot dog or hamburger anymore.

Good news! Here are three ways to switch things up and keep your hot dog game on point this season.

Breakfast hot dog

The breakfast dog topped with crispy hash brown potatoes, onions and a fried egg makes it completely acceptable to down this puppy for breakfast. Seriously, try it out. You won't be disappointed.

Buffalo hot dog

The Buffalo dog combines everything you love about game day chicken wings and puts it on a hot dog. If I had to choose a favorite, this one is it.

Tropical hot dog

The tropical dog is perfect for summer. With a tangy rice vinegar salad like a fruit-and-avocado mixture, this cilantro-infused topping is the perfect way to beat the heat. It's a great one for cookouts too, because you can make the topping ahead of time and keep it in a bowl on the side when the dogs come off the grill.

Hot dogs: 3 Ways

The classic American cookout food gets three makeovers to make them more than just something you throw onto the grill.

Yields 2 hot dogs of each variety

Prep time: 10 minutes | Cook time: 30 minutes | Total time: 40 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 6 cooked hot dogs
  • 6 hot dog buns

For the breakfast hot dogs

  • 1/2 large yellow onion, sliced
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/3 cup frozen hash brown potatoes (chopped potatoes)
  • 2 eggs

For the Buffalo hot dogs

  • 2 tablespoons Buffalo sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Greek yogurt
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons blue cheese, crumbled
For the tropical hot dogs
  • 1/4 cup chopped pineapple
  • 1/2 an avocado, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped mango
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
  • Splash rice wine vinegar

Directions:

For the breakfast hot dogs

  1. In a small skillet over medium heat, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the sliced onion, and cook until browned/caramelized, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, and set aside.
  2. Add the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil to the skillet, and then add the frozen potatoes. Cook, flipping occasionally, until browned and crispy, about 10 minutes. Add the potatoes to the bowl with the onions.
  3. Fry the eggs until desired doneness.
  4. Assemble by placing the hot dogs in the buns and then topping with the potato-onion mixture and the fried egg.
For the Buffalo hot dogs
  1. In a small bowl, mix together the Buffalo sauce and Greek yogurt until combined.
  2. Place the hot dog in the bun, and top with the celery and blue cheese. Drizzle the Buffalo sauce on top.
For the tropical hot dogs
  1. In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients, and toss them together.
  2. Place the hot dogs in the buns, and then spoon the mixture on top.

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More hot dog recipes

Cheesy bacon-wrapped hot dogs
Lime beer-braised salsa dogs
Mexican hot dogs

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