If you’re ever offered something described as "a thin casing made of animal intestine piped full of processed meat," chances are you’re turning the opposite direction and running as fast as possible. But, if that same person (whoever the heck they are) offers you a "hot dog," chances are you’re gladly accepting. The funny thing is that both are exactly the same.
Hot dogs are so simple, yet so much creativity can go into them. They’re easy to eat on the run, and although doctors would advise to consume them sparingly, they are too darn delicious. Whether it’s a cheap dirty-water dog from a bustling city vendor or one topped with expensive ingredients that’ll set you back a few bucks, wherever you go in the country you can find that one hot dog spot with rave reviews from everyone who visits. Gather the family, hop in the car, and take a massive trip around America so you can eat at the greatest hot dog spot in every state!
Alabama: Gus’s Hot Dogs
When you think of Greek heritage, the image of a hot dog may not immediately spring up into your mind. However, in Birmingham, people love their dogs, and one man who put the love of a Greek into every ‘furter is Gus Alexander at his iconic restaurant Gus’s Hot Dogs.
Slingin’ dogs (and a bunch of other great items) since 1947, Gus’s hits it big with their "Special Dog": a frank with mustard, onions, sauerkraut, ground beef, and an addicting secret sauce made with vinegar, ketchup, and a slew of spices.
Alaska: International House of Hot Dogs
You’ve likely heard of the International House of Pancakes, but did you know International Houses didn’t stop with flapjacks? The residents of Anchorage are more than familiar with this, and that’s why they hit up IHOH when a craving hits. Especially if you’re craving a reindeer hot dog.
That’s right. All year round they offer customers a hot dog called the "Alaskan" that has a reindeer weenie, sauteed onions, and a secret chipotle sauce for an extra kick. Not that into eating Rudolph? They have a bunch of other amazing options, as well.
Arizona: El Guero Canelo
If you consider yourself well-versed in the hot dog landscape, then you know Arizona is famous for their bacon-wrapped Sonoran dogs. And, even though you can get them all over the state, it seems that Tuscon’s El Guero Canelo has some of the greatest.
The ingredients of their Sonoran style dog are standard: bacon around the frank, beans, both grilled and fresh onion, tomato, mayo, mustard, and jalapeno sauce. However, it’s the bun they use that scores the real points. They nestle each dog in a warm canoe-like bun called a "bolillo" so you can sail away into the delicious Sonoran sunset.
Arkansas: Tidwell’s Dairy Bar
When a craving for a hot dog really hits — and we mean really strikes your belly like a viper — nothing chases off that venomous appetite quite like a footlong frankfurter to make you feel like a culinary king. That’s why the top stop in Lonoke, Arkansas is Tidwell’s Dairy Bar.
Order up that footlong with "everything." That one word gets you chili, onions, slaw, mustard, and the state’s famous cheese dip. Food writer Kat Robinson described the cheesy goodness as a Velveeta type of cheese sauce with pureed tomato.
Pink’s is to hot dogs what Katz’s Deli is to pastrami sandwiches. The Los Angeles eatery has a long and famous history with their food, and they’ve been made especially popular through a massive celebrity presence, as well. If you wanna feel famous while you dine on dogs, head to Pink’s.
Order up the "Hollywood Walk of Fame Dog" for a nine-inch weiner topped with coleslaw. Simple but delicious. Are you a Rosie O’Donnell megafan (who isn’t!?)? Snag the "Rosie O’Donnell Long Island Dog" with mustard, onions, chili, and kraut. They have a ton of other specialty dogs equally as enticing, so get some Pink’s in you soon.
Colorado: Biker Jim’s
Rattlesnake isn’t an animal you see on many menus. In fact, you can likely count on one hand how many places in the country serve it. Well, Denver’s Biker Jim’s is one of them, but it’s only a fraction of the incredible frank flavors they offer. You’re gonna want to pencil this place into your itinerary ASAP.
You might not like the look of snakes, but the taste of a rattle frank might change your mind. Be warned that both the rattlesnake and rabbit frank isn’t always available, but you can always delve into amazing other choices like Jack-A-Lope and Ostrich.
Connecticut: Rawley’s Drive Inn
You might not realize it when you first drive-through, but Connecticut ranks with the best of them when it comes to hot dogs. If you need proof, just as anyone who’s been lucky enough to order up a frank from Rawley’s Drive Inn in Fairfield.
Rawley’s has a vast menu to choose from, but when you’re standing in line, the hot dogs are what you’re diving face-first into. Choose either The Works (mustard, relish, kraut, bacon) or the Hot Chihuahua (mustard, onions, hot relish) to ensure you get all the flavor profiles they offer.
Delaware: Dog House
Just because a place isn’t decked out with tons of lights and vibrant signage doesn’t mean it’s not worth traveling to. Case in point: This little roadhouse counter off a highway in New Castle that serves up franks on hoagie rolls for a unique, but incredibly tasty, take on the hot dog game.
It’s great for people who want to feel like they’re eating a sandwich but also want a hot dog, as well. There are all sorts of toppings to choose from, so dazzle your dog up with whatever your little heart desires!
Florida: El Chuzo BBQ
One of the greatest things about Florida — besides it being the home of Disney World — is the incredible amount of Spanish food it has. El Chuzo BBQ in Tampa offers so many great items, but when it comes to their hot dogs, you gotta get yourself the Perro.
"Perro" is Spanish for "dog," but the dogs here don’t bark or play fetch. Instead, they come topped with bacon, cheese, french fries, and whatever condiments you want. Whether you’re a dog person or not, you need to invest in these perros.
Georgia: The Varsity
"What’ll ya have?" is the important question you’re asked when you roll up to The Varsity. This Atlanta staple isn’t just known for serving up great food; it’s the world’s largest hot dog stand. And, to make sure you do things right when you go, get a huge scoop of chili on that frank.
They don’t hold back one bit when you want a chili dog, and your appetite will thank them after that first bite. But, if you’re not trying to order something as heavy as chili, they have fresh slaw and cheese, as well.
Hawaii: Hula Dog
Hula hoops are to Hawaii what leis are to, well, also Hawaii! If you fly out to this Shangri-La of tranquil scenery, you gotta get to Hula Dog for a super unique take on franks that’ll have you yearning for island life long after you leave. Insider tip: order up a fresh-squeezed lemonade to hep wash that hot dog down. Fans on social media have said that they want to go back to Hawaii just for another chance to eat at this little slice of hot dog paradise in Waikiki.
Idaho: State Fair Tater Dog (or Tater Pig)
Anywhere you go, state fairs aren’t exactly known for their light and healthy cuisine. In fact, fairs are the kind of place you can find ridiculous concoctions that’ll send every cardiologist running for the hills in fear. At the Idaho State Fair, that concoction is the Tater Pig, or Tater Pig depending on who you ask.
It’s basically a loaded baked potato with a hole drilled into the middle where a hot dog is carefully nestled. Yea, it’s pretty insane stuff. How to eat it can prove tricky. Do you use a fork and knife or just unleash your inner savage and use your fists? The choice is all yours.
Illinois: Jim’s Original
Chicago is one of the country’s greatest food cities, so it’s not surprising they sling up some incredible franks at tons of locations. But, head to the Maxwell Street Market to Jim’s Original for an amazing Chicago-style hot dog with an even greater history.
The buns are slathered in yellow mustard before receiving a huge scoop of grilled sweet Spanish onions and spicy peppers. You can also double down on the franks with a two-in-one bun, or try their Polish sausage, as well.
Indiana: Fort Wayne Coney Island
New York isn’t the only place with a Coney Island. In Fort Wayne, you get to enjoy a different Coney Island energy, but one that still has the great tasting boardwalk food. When you’re there, the only frank you need to order to experience the island properly is the aptly named Coney Island Hot Dog with mustard, Coney sauce, and chopped onions.
Fans on Trip Advisor praise Coney Island not just for its hot dogs and the tasty chili that tops them, but the restaurant’s nostalgic (even if it’s a bit cramped inside) appeal.
Iowa: Bob’s Drive Inn
With a name like Bob’s Drive Inn, you expect a simple setup, and that’s exactly what you’ll find in Le Mars, Iowa. However, the flavors they provide guests, especially with their hot dogs, are far from simple. They make use of "loose meat" on their dogs, and even though the term isn’t super appetizing, the ground beef it refers to is.
If you want to make your trip extra authentic, order up the "Bob Dog." You’ll get a nice fat frank topped with that iconic loose meat and onions. It’s all you need to leave happy.
Kansas: Fritz’s Meat and Superior Sausage
If a company is going to have the word "superior" in their name, they better well mean it. You can’t throw that term around loosely, and luckily the people at Fritz’s in Leawood don’t. They’re just a small butcher shop, but they know what people want when it comes to hot dogs.
The place does everything from ribs to smoked sausages, so even if you go and decide a hot dog isn’t tops on your list, you’ll surely find something delicious waiting for you. One fan said that after their hot dog lunch they walked out with $30 worth of sausages. Sounds like our kinda place!
Kentucky: Dixie Chili
Every time you hear the word "dixie," you just get this sense of the South, right? Well, that’s exactly why the people who run this joint put the word in their name. There are multiple locations and the place is super quaint and adorable, just like their Coney dogs.
The name implies they’re known for their chili, but they pile their franks super high with all sorts of fixings, as well. If you want to go as hard as you can (and you do), order up the "Alligator": mustard, mayo, cheese, a dill spear, and add onions and chili for a small additional charge. It’s a hot dog as fierce as the reptile it’s named after.
Louisiana: Dat Dog
When you’re pursuing the great state of Louisiana and a craving for hot dogs suddenly strikes, look no further than Dat Dog in New Orleans. Even if you’re not close by, make the schlep to try out some truly unique creations well worth the venture.
Have you ever wanted to try alligator but never knew where? Well, Dat Dog has you covered. They also serve up franks made of crawfish and duck, so go crazy. Plus, the list of toppings they have is wild, with things like blackberry sauce, blue cheese, and crawfish etouffee.
Maine: Flo’s Hot Dogs
Not everything we crave is available at all hours of the day, and when people in Cape Neddick, Maine want a dog from Flo’s they need to plan accordingly, because the restaurant is only open for a few hours before closing back up to the dismay of those who arrived too late.
What makes the franks here so special? People say it’s all about the special relish they make in house. It’s a spicy chutney-like relish that pairs perfectly with the other two toppings: mayonnaise and celery salt.
Maryland is known for their crabs, so you better believe the people at Stuggy’s in Baltimore make sure to give anyone who wants a hot dog the option to also get a healthy dose of fresh crab meat added on top. Or, a bunch of other awesome ingredients.
If you’re looking for that crustacean flavor, the Crab Mac And Cheese Hot Dog is the way to go. But, other options like the Bob Marley Hot Dog (Caribbean slaw, jerk chicken, and mango mayo) or the Bruce Lee Hot Dog (egg roll-wrapped frank with sesame ginger slaw, spicy Chinese mustard, cilantro, and green onion) are equally fantastic options.
Massachusetts: Graham’s Hot Dogs
If you’re in Fall River, Massachusetts, and searching for some great franks, look no further than Graham’s Hot Dogs. Funny enough, the city is the birthplace of famed chef Emeril Legasse, and you can tell his talent clearly rubbed off on the people serving up the food here.
To make your trip truly worth it, it’s highly advised you explore the "Fall River Bean Dog." You may not see it on the menu, but you can bet your bottom dollar they’ll know what you’re talking about when you mutter those four words. You get a frank loaded with sweet baked beans in a rich hearty sauce. Life is good.
Michigan: American Coney Island
If you want to venture to yet another Coney Island our wonderful country offers, head to Detroit for the most patriotic version: American Coney Island! The place has been nestled in the same location for over 100 years, and the Greek influence it brings to the hot dogs is why people return again and again.
Decades ago when the place opened, the Keros family developed a secret chili-sauce recipe that took center stage in every bite. Make sure you do not miss out on this amazing condiment by ordering the "American Special": A frank topped with ground beef, mustard, onions, and that tantalizing chili sauce.
Minnesota: Tilt Pinball Bar
What’s better than munching down a couple of franks with your buddies while out on the town? The luxury of working off the meal with some intense games of pinball, of course! And, that’s exactly what you can do at Tilt Pinball Bar in Minneapolis.
Just because this place flaunts its pinball doesn’t mean they slack in other aspects, especially the hot dogs. You can keep it simple (but delicious) with the "OGB" (smoked onions, Gruyere, and bacon) or set your mouth ablaze with the daring "Volcano Dog" (Habanero Pepperjack, hot sauce, and pickled jalapeños). Whatever option you choose, you win.
Mississippi: Small Time Hot Dogs
Do not let this name fool you. It might say "small time," but the flavors packed into their specialty dogs are nothing short of huge. Food trucks seem to be all the rage now, and this one is certainly worth your attention.
If you’re feeling like a little flavor of the ocean with your frank, order up the Raging Cajun doused in Cajun crawfish sauce. Or, you could always get fancy with the French Onion Dog: a weiner slathered in French onion dip, potato sticks, and a pickle. They pop up around the state, so following them on social media is your best bet to find this tasty hot dog truck.
Missouri: Steve’s Hot Dogs
You know when a musician opens up a restaurant, it’s going to have a pretty cool vibe to it, and that’s exactly what Steve’s Hot Dogs offers customers in St. Louis. What started as a small stand in 2008 blossomed into something so much more for Steve Ewing, the music maker behind the scenes of it all.
To say the selection of hot dogs is awesome is a gross understatement. Where else can you order a HYAAAH! Dog with grilled onions, grilled peppers, banana peppers, bacon, and provolone cheese? Or try the spicy Molotov Dog with garlic ghost chipotle sauce, Sriracha, onions, relish, and jalapenos. Steve’s doing everything right.
Montana: The Burger Dive
If you’re looking for a great frank in downtown Billings, Montana and see this place, don’t let the name dissuade you from going. Yes, they serve a darn good burger, but they also sling some awesome franks, as well.
Take, for example, the "Mazatlan" Mexican dog. This champion frank makes all the right moves with bacon, shredded cheddar cheese, pico de gallo, guacamole, and chipotle mayonnaise. Yea, you’re gonna want to order up a second round after you finish. And maybe even a third, you glutton.
Nebraska: Julies Hot Dogs
You might not have ever heard of the town of Beatrice in Nebraska, but one stop at Julie’s Hot Dogs and this place will get burned into your memory in the most delicious way possible. There are enough options to make your head and stomach spin.
Let’s talk about the Asian Sensation dog. Catchy name with even catchier ingredients: slaw, cream cheese, Thai sauce, and a sprinkle of chow mein noodles. You could always build your own footlong frank too using a plethora of ingredients. Did we get your attention yet? Good.
Fans of Korean food might see this name and think, "Hmm. That’s awfully close to ‘bulgogi,’" and they’d be on the right track with that thinking. This Las Vegas place is chock-full of Korean flavors to scratch the itch of anyone craving both a frank and Korean barbecue.
If you want to keep things super Korean, order up the Bulgogi frank topped with bulgogi meat, Asian slaw, green onions, sesame seeds, and housemade bulgogi aioli. Or, get really adventurous with the Angry Kimchi: freshly prepared kimchi, spicy pork bulgogi, jalapenos, and fiery aioli.
New Hampshire: Gilley’s Diner
This old-fashioned Portsmouth lunch cart was created in 1940, and even though at the time it was just a small idea, it ended up passing the test of time with flying colors. There’s something about that old-timey feeling that sticks with you after you leave, and Gilley’s gives everyone just that.
Customers have the option to get their dogs steamed or grilled (both are fantastic), and then for less than five bucks they can get kraut, chili, or beans. Nothing super fancy here, but you don’t always need fancy to make something worth every penny.
New Jersey: Jimmy Buff’s
No, this isn’t the guy who sings "Margaritaville." That’s Jimmy Buffet. This Jimmy Buff’s was established in 1932 in West Orange, and they serve up Italian-style hot dogs, which are slightly different in look but just as tasty as the rest.
Instead of regular hot dog buns, these franks are served in a half-moon-shaped bun and then loaded with mustard, peppers, onions, and fried potatoes. It’s one hefty handful, but at Jimmy Buff’s they thankfully don’t know any other way to serve them.
New Mexico: Dog House Drive-In
Anyone who took the wild journey alongside Bob Odenkirk in Better Call Saul might remember this place was featured in an episode of the show. Luckily, you don’t have to be a television star to visit the Albuquerque hotspot.
If a long frank is what you’re looking for, then this is the place for you. Snag yourself a foot-long dog loaded to the brim with red chile. The best part about a frank this big is that you can share it with a buddy!
New York: Voss Bar-B-Q
When looking for the top frank in New York, it might seem natural to head to Coney Island. The Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest is held there, after all. However, just outside of Utica (a long way off from Coney Island) stands a dairy bar that dishes out awesome dogs every day to a huge group of eager patrons.
There are no specialty dogs here. Just your standard frank-in-bun options with some good ol’ fixings to slather on top. Ask for the Hot Dog Mexi ATW to get the potpourri of mustard, relish, kraut, pickles, chili, and cheese.
North Carolina: Pulliam’s BBQ
When you’re in North Carolina, it seems like getting your hands dirty in some barbecue is the right move. While that is correct, you wouldn’t want to miss out on the fantastic hot dogs at Pulliam’s BBQ either. The Winston-Salem eatery has been around since 1910, which is a good indication it knows food.
One of the first things you notice is the neon red color of the dogs. While this was apparently a method of hiding old meat many years ago, now it’s just a tradition. Make your Pulliam’s visit complete with a scoop of homemade white slaw and chili on your frank.
North Dakota: DogMahal DogHaus
Yep, this place took the name of the epic building in India and put a spin on the name to let you know they serve up epic hot dogs. It’s located right near the University of North Dakota, so you know if it’s good enough for hungry college kids then it’s good enough for you.
If you’re trying to keep with the whole "dog" theme, get yourself the Dogma Arigato. It’s a quarter-pound frank with sweet and spicy slaw on a toasted bun. Or, better yet, try the Hell Hound with peppers and a dousing of their extremely spicy dogma sauce.
Ohio: Tony Packo’s
Tony Packo was the son of Hungarian immigrants, and his experience working in restaurants when he was young led to his creation of his Hungarian hot dog, which was basically a Hungarian sausage on rye bread with spicy chili. It was a huge neighborhood hit, and Toledo’s Tony Packo’s was soon born.
Customers can pick from an American hot dog or a Hungarian sausage. Both are served with mustard, onions, and their signature chili sauce. You can also add shredded cheese to each for less than a buck more.
Oklahoma: Coney Island Hot Weiners
It might sound like a funny name, but just know these people aren’t joking around when it comes to food. Especially the hot wieners. Anyone in the Tulsa area has likely heard of this spot, and it even snagged a spot on People Magazine’s "Best Hot Dogs In Every State" list.
So, what exactly swayed the folks at People to pick this joint? Well, as the list states, "For those in the know, the order is three Coney Dogs (chili, onions, shredded cheese) plus a dusting of cayenne pepper — but you have to ask for it."
Oregon: Olympia Provisions Public House
Located in Portland, a city that certainly has a hip vibe to it, Olympia Provisions Public House has a massive selection of franks, sausages, kielbasa, and other wursts to sink your eager teeth into. Meat is clearly their thing, so you can trust they’ll lead you to the land of flavor successfully. Need a tall draft beer to wash it down with? They can handle that, too!
If you’re looking for a hot dog with a touch of cheese flavor then go for the kasekrainer. The cheesy sausage is loaded with sauerkraut and Dijon mustard atop a bun. Mmmm.
Pennsylvania: Brighton Hot Dog Shoppe
The destination hot dog nirvana that is Brighton Hot Dog Shoppe isn’t so much one place, but several, as it boasts 11 locations throughout Western Pennsylvania and Ohio. The go-to here is the classic chili and cheese dog, and while it highlights a menu that doesn’t get too crazy with its toppings, it still brings the traditional spicy/creamy combo better than anywhere in the state.
Another reason people make the drive to their nearest Brighton location are the fresh-cut, crispy fries, that explode with flavor in your mouth even if they’re not covered in … more chili.
Rhode Island: Castle Luncheonette
For a tiny state, Rhode Island packs a huge punch when it comes to their hot dogs. Head to Castle Luncheonette in Woonsocket for their Saugy Dogs and Dynamites. This tiny state will leave a massive impression after you indulge.
What Rhode Island refers to as "Dynamites" are Sloppy Joe-like sandwiches, but here at Castle Luncheonette they take that pepper-filled meat sauce and ladle it over Saugy Dogs for a hearty and intense handful of flavor.
South Carolina: Jack’s Cosmic Dogs
If you need any proof that Jack’s Cosmic Dogs is the spot to go when you’re in the vicinity of Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, all you have to do is look at the numerous awards and nominations they’ve garnered over the years.
Nearly all of the dogs have cosmic names like Krypto Kraut and Orbit City, but the Cosmic Dog with blue cheese slaw and sweet potato mustard is the real play. In fact, Food Network star Alton Brown even said they were the best dogs he ever ate!
South Dakota: Hungry Dog
When you’re hungry and you want a hot dog, there isn’t a more appropriately named place to go than Hungry Dog in Mitchell, South Dakota. With a large selection of specialty toppings and unique flavors, it’s a wonder why every state doesn’t have one.
Take a second to look at the Egg Dog: an all-beef hot dog rolled up in a fried egg roll and drizzled with wasabi mayo. Or, how about the Hungry Dog itself: a footlong frank wrapped in bacon and fried before a dousing of chili, fries, shaved ribeye, and Dimock pepperoni cheese. Come hungry, leave happy.
Dyer’s claim to fame is their burgers that are cooked in the same strained grease for over 100 years! This famous grease is teeming with flavor from meat over the years, but this Memphis burger joint also serves franks that are dropped in the same iconic oil, and they’re just as good!
The toppings are standard, with each dog coming dressed in mustard, pickles, and onions. But, you can also get chili and cheese for an additional cost. It’s that ageless grease though that gives each one a flavor like no other.
Texas: Sumo Shack
When driving through Dallas, there are several things you might expect to see: ten-gallon hats, Cowboys jerseys, and enough signs advertising barbecue to make your head spin. Something that would jarringly stand out like a sore thumb, on the other hand, would definitely have to do with sumo wrestling. But, that’s what makes Sumo Shack such a unique oasis-like restaurant.
A hot dog with a wild Japanese twist is exactly what your appetite craves. Their beef Tokyo dog whisks you away to Japan with bonito flakes, nori, scallion, sesame seeds, caramelized onion, and kewpie mayo. It’s a frank so insanely packed with a Asian flavors you’ll forget you’re still in the states.
Utah: J. Dawgs
Provo may lack fraternity houses and bars boasting $4 liquor pitchers, but make no mistake it is still a college town. The home of Brigham Young University may be dry but that doesn’t mean it’s not still teeming with budget-constricted college kids looking for a great cheap meal, and many of them find it in the grill-marked goodness the is J. Dawgs.
The dogs here taste like they came fresh from the fire — charred nicely and topped with a secret barbecue sauce. And that unique flavor is why it’s not only a hit at BYU, but also up the road in Salt Lake City and arch rival University of Utah.
Vermont: Handy’s Lunch
Handy’s Lunch sounds like a cozy spot, and that’s why Earl and Flora Handy gave it exactly that vibe when they opened it in 1945. The Burlington cafe has come a long way since then, but one thing has stayed consistent: the quality of the hot dogs.
Even though you’re in the state of Vermont when you visit Handy’s, it’s their Texas Dog they love to flaunt. It’s a frank split down the middle longways and then piled high with Texas chili. When you’re here, you can act a little bit like a Texan.
Virginia: Sam’s Hot Dogs
Virginia is known for their ham, but in the small mountain town of Crozet lies Sam’s Hot Dogs, a place serving up franks so tasty you forget all about the ham. Who needs ham anyways when you have footlong franks as an option?!
The rules at Sam’s are simple: pick a regular-sized or footlong frank and then top it with mild or spicy chili, coleslaw, fresh onions, or any of the other ingredients they have available.
Washington: Joe’s Grilled Gourmet Dogs
The story behind Joe’s Grilled Gourmet Dogs is one that’ll bring tears to your eyes. The man who runs the stand right outside CenturyLink Field in Seattle, Joe Bernstein, made his dream come true only to see it fall victim to Covid-19. However, all hope was not lost.
Thanks to Sounders FC Relief Fund, however, Joe was welcomed back and was slinging up dogs topped with cream cheese and grilled onions (what a combination!) outside the stadium. Grab one of these dogs next time you’re in Seattle and support a small business!
West Virginia: Hillbilly Hot Dogs
In this super PC culture we’re all living in at the moment, it might feel rude to throw around the term "hillbilly." However, in Lesage, West Virginia, you can use that term all you want when you pull up to Hillbilly Hot Dogs!
They have an awesome selection to pick from, including their iconic Hillbilly Dog (deep-fried with chili sauce, mustard, and onions), Pizza Dog (pizza sauce, shredded cheese, fried pepperoni), and something called Stacy’s Flu Shot (a bunch of jalapenos covered in chili sauce). Let your inner hillbilly out when you go. It feels great.
Wisconsin: Vanguard Bar
When you step into Milwaukee’s Vanguard Bar, prepare yourself for an intense menu. You might find yourself asking several questions about the ingredient combinations, but just know they were all carefully thought out, and each one is a winner.
Grab a classic sausage made with a variety of unique herbs and spices, or turn things up from 10 to 11 with a styled sausage such as the Bunkhouse: a bacon-wrapped cheddarwurst with fried jalapenos, cheddar cheese, barbecue sauce, and guacamole.
Wyoming: Born in a Barn
In the least densely-populated state in the Lower 48, it’s unusual to find a large collection of anything sitting under one roof. But when it comes to hot dogs, at least, the Laramie burger-and-wing joint brings a variety of offerings you wouldn’t expect.
Sure, you could order the quarter-pound beef frank in a traditional manner, covered with chili and cheese or diced peppers and relish. But if you’re in Wyoming, you’re there to be adventurous, right? Born in a Barn has graced its patrons with a number of inventive hot dogs over the years, such as the Delhi Dog, covered in mango chutney, bacon, green onions, and curry powder.