How to Grill Hot Dogs to Perfection for Your Fourth of July Feast
They're one of the most versatile and easy to prepare foods out there: Hot dogs can be baked, boiled, broiled, and even roasted on a stick over a fiery flame. For that reason, you might be thinking to yourself, "don't I already know how to cook a hot dog?" The thing is, just because you can cook a hot dog doesn't mean you know how to cook one perfectly.
When it comes to the Fourth of July, the otherwise humble hot dog becomes the star of the show. As it turns out, there is actually a correct way to grill one to perfection. Whether you like to dress yours up with relish and grilled onions or prefer a simple streak of ketchup, you need to start with a perfectly cooked dog. With a little practice, you'll have the technique down pat and can easily use it for your future cookouts. What's more, this techniques works with all of you favorite hot dogs, whether they are vegan or all-beef iterations.
First things first: Let's talk about what makes a perfectly grilled hot dog. In our eyes, it should be cooked thoroughly with a glistening, golden crust. The experts at Nathan's Famous Hot Dogs agree. They recommend setting one side of the grill to hot and the other side of the grill to warm (if you're working with a charcoal grill, just pay attention to the grills natural hot and cool spots.) Start by cooking the dogs on the cooler side, which ensures that they heat thoroughly without burning on the outside. Once they've plumped up, transfer them to the hot section of the grill to achieve the perfectly deep, golden brown color they're famous for. If you like your hot dogs with a bit more char, feel free to leave them on the hot part of the grill longer to achieve grill marks or get a crispy crust.
Once the dogs are plump and golden, take them off the grill and put them directly on a bun (we like ours toasted). Next, dress yours up with your favorite toppings. Once you've topped them exactly as you like, you'll officially have the perfectly grilled hot dog—they're the perfect centerpiece for Fourth of July feast.