Celebrate Memorial Day With Gratitude and Gourmet Hot Dogs

I must confess that Memorial Day in my family was always one of big celebration, barbeque or seafood boils (crab, crawfish and/or shrimp) or picnics. Unfortunately, because we had little contact with anyone in the military we didn’t spend any time memorializing the fine men and women that gave their lives for our country.

Memorial Day should first and foremost be a day of remembrance and a focal point of our coming together to honor those who gave their all, to celebrate their gift of life given so that we the citizenry of the United States can enjoy the freedoms and privileges that were paid for by their sacrifices. The fact that it is a three-day weekend sometimes distracts from the solemnity of the occasion. There is no reason, however, why a holiday cannot include a time out for thanking those who died and this year we plan to do just that. My husband is a Veteran and we will fly our flag, spend a few moments in prayer and be thankful that those who fought and died enabled us to have a country that permits us to live freer than anyone else in the world.
Why don’t you do something similar, maybe even more.
To add to your celebration, I am sharing our family’s favorite gourmet hot dogs. They speak to the kid in all of us. Kinda makes your mouth water doesn’t it? Be safe and have fun!

Ya’ll have a down home delicious Memorial Day honoring our fallen heroes followed by pigging out at the picnic, or on the patio, or wherever your celebration takes place. Please try to remember “portion control” while you are at it, yea, right!


Yummy foiled, broiled or a la carte.dogs add class, sass and pizzazz to Memorial Day.

Advanced Preparation

  • Use a substantial bun – not the small flimsy ones
  • Either grill or boil (fully cook) your bun size wieners or sausages before or at time of assembly
  • The better quality frank or sausage you use the better your final product
  • If you plan to broil your assembled dogs, warm your buns and fillings first
  • Gather available condiments and filling ingredients:

link sausage
pickle relish
Canned sauerkraut, drained
minced raw onions
jalapeno peppers
tortilla chips
Buffalo sauce thickened with corn starch

Optional: pico de gallo, drained black beans, roasted whole kernel corn, canned fried onion rings, sautéed mushrooms and/or grilled onions and green peppers, thin sliced
Providing paper trays made for a la carte hot dogs, if possible, simplifies serving (a large box at Sam’s is inexpensive)

  • Sam’s has precut aluminum foil sheets at an inexpensive cost.

Foiled Hot Dog Assembly

  • Prepare enough pieces, just large enough to wrap around the dog, for quantity of hot dogs being made – spray inside/dull side lightly with oil at assembly.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. or have hot grill available
  • Place bun on sprayed aluminum foil.
  • Layer ingredients in bun in order listed in recipe
  • Wrap foil around filled bun and close ends
  • Write name of dog on foil with permanent marker
  • Place foil packet directly on grill or heat on sheet pan for 15-20 minutes in preheated 350 degree oven. The longer they are heated the crunchier they become.

Broiled Hot Dog Assembly

  • Preheat oven to broil
  • Using square or 9×13 oven proof bakeware sprayed with oil, line buns in pan.
  • Make one pan or ½ pan of each flavor (2 flavors per pan) filling buns in order listed in recipe except leaving cheese for last.
  • Put pan under broiler and watch carefully so as not to burn dogs.
  • Remove from oven when cheese is melted or filling is hot and serve immediately.

Build your own dog – a la carte assembly

  • Heat all ingredients individually as indicated.
  • Make a separate assembly line for each flavor hot dog with a descriptive name tag close by.
  • As you grill or boil hot dogs, place in one in each bun and allow guests to build their own dog.
  • If necessary, put dogs on grill, on a metal pan, for a moment to heat further or have oven proof saucers or plates available to run their creation under and oven broiler for a moment.
  • Bun
  • Slice of yellow cheese
  • Weiner, boiled or grilled
  • Chili, your favorite canned or homemade
  • Mustard and/or minced onions , sliced jalapenos – optional

Follow foiled or broiled hot dog assembly instructions.

French Onion Hot Dog

  • 1 small white onion per 2 buns
  • 2 tablespoons butter and 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Bun
  • Weiner, boiled or grilled
  • Caramelized or grilled onions
  • Canned Fried onions – optional
  • 3-4 tablespoons shredded Mozarella Cheese

Peel and thin slice white onions. Sauté onions in butter with olive oil over medium heat, stirring often, until golden. Lightly salt and pepper. Assemble using foiled, broiled or a la carte instructions.

Rockin’ Reuben Dog

  • Bun
  • 1 slice mozzarella, provolone or Swiss cheese in bottom of bun,
  • Weiner or polish sausage link, boiled or grilled
  • Drizzle top of weiner with thousand island or Russian dressing
  • Canned Sauerkraut, drained

Assemble using foiled or broiled instructions.

Campground Cookout Dog

  • Bun
  • Ranch Style or baked beans, warmed
  • Weiner or Cajun sausage link, grilled or boiled
  • 2+ tablespoons barbeque sauce
  • Longhorn Cheddar Cheese, sliced or shredded
  • Jalapenos and/or yellow mustard, minced onions – optional

Assemble using foiled, broiled or a la carte instructions.

Nacho Mama’s Favorite Hot Dog

  • Bun, split, buttered and toasted
  • Weiner, grilled or boiled
  • Nacho Cheese, hot
  • Diced jalapenos, roasted corn or hot drained black beans and/or pico de gallo – optional

Assemble using foiled or a la carte instructions.

Chile Cheese Franks and Frites

  • Bun
  • Weiner, grilled or boiled
  • Nacho Cheese, heated
  • French fries, fresh
  • More chili and cheese
  • Ketchup and/or jalapenos – optional

Assemble using foiled or a la carte instructions. Build using ingredients in order listed and serve immediately. These are sooo yummy!

Veteran’s Delight

  • Bun
  • Weiner, grilled or boiled
  • BBQ sauce, heated
  • Lite sprinkling of shredded yellow cheese, minced raw onions or French fried onion rings
  • Dill pickle slices and/or chopped Jalapenos – optional

Great foiled, broiled or a la carte. Assemble ingredients in order listed except when broiling add cheese last. Serve immediately.

Big Boys Buffalo Dog

  • Bun
  • Weiner, grilled or boiled
  • Buffalo sauce (thickened with cornstarch and water and heated until thick)
  • Bleu cheese or ranch dressing
  • Fresh French fried onion rings – optional

Best a la carte. Assemble ingredients in order listed and serve immediately.

Mama Mia’s Pizza Dog

  • Bun
  • Weiner or Italian sausage link, fully cooked, grilled or boiled
  • Marinara sauce, heated
  • Sliced black olives
  • Sautéed mushrooms and/or grilled onions and green peppers, thin sliced – optional
  • Shredded mozzarella cheese

Foiled, broiled or a la carte. Assemble ingredients in order listed and serve immediately.

General instructions:
For foiled dogs, layer ingredients in bun as listed, wrap in aluminum foil (write name of dog on foil with permanent marker) and heat on sheet pan for 15-20 minutes in preheated 350 degree oven, or place on a heated grill for 15 minutes, with top closed.

If you are at home and don’t want to wrap them in foil then put cheese on dog last and put under broiler until cheese is melted. Make sure all ingredients that need to be hot are heated when you put them on the bun.

Peggy Sholly
Down Home Delicious®
A Taste of Down Home Delicious®
Down Home Delicious® Extravaganza

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