Calling all hot dog purists and frankfurter fanatics! This is your time to shine. According to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council, Americans will likely indulge in 7 billion hot dogs between Memorial Day and Labor Day. You read that right. Billion, with a “b.”
And today, we’re helping you take the first step toward becoming a grill master. Take one whiff of the seriously smokin’ BBQs that surround you and you’ll see—or should we say smell—that the title is yours for the taking. Say “no more” to burnt beef frank casings and meat blisters. Those mistakes are overdone. Now’s the time to become one with your grill and learn how to cook hot dogs the right way.
What You'll Need
- Gas or charcoal grill
- Propane or charcoal
- Grill brush or a wad of aluminum foil
- Grilling tongs
- PAM® Grilling or another non-stick grill spray
- Hebrew National® all natural beef franks
- Buns, melted butter (regular or garlic), and pastry brush
- Your choice of condiments and toppings, such as Hunt’s® 100% natural ketchup, Gulden’s® bold yellow mustard, relish, chopped onion, or even mango salsa and Sriracha mayonnaise
Step 1: Prep Your Grill
Whether you’re working on a gas or charcoal grill, the first step to grilling the perfect beef frank is to make sure your grill is ready to get cooking. Confirm that it’s free from remnants of last season’s grub—and if it isn’t, find a grill brush and start scrubbing. (Alternatively, you could use a wad of aluminum foil.) Once you have a clean slate, you’ll want to ensure there’s plenty of propane or charcoal on hand. Call your tongs and your beef franks on deck. It’s game time!
Step 2: Spray the Grates
Before you fire up the grill, spray the grates with a non-stick grill spray like PAM® Grilling. Treat it like you would any other cooking surface, with a couple quick blasts. Your franks will have a hard time sticking to the surface, meaning they’ll be easier to turn—and your grill will be easier to clean. #winning
Making Glazed Frank Kabobs? Spray your skewers with grill spray before layering on your juicy franks, sweet corn, red onion, and bell peppers. This will make your kabobs easier to eat.
Step 3: Bring the Heat
Like a well-seasoned athlete, your grill needs a proper warm-up to deliver its peak performance. Before you throw the franks on, preheat the grill. For gas, preheat on high for 10 to 15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, preheat until the charcoal is covered with a white ash. Once the grill is hot, reduce the heat to medium for standard beef franks and to medium-low for beef franks with lower fat content.
Step 4: Keep it Moving
Using grill tongs, place your beef franks over indirect heat (or an area adjacent to/not directly over the flames) perpendicular to the grill grates. Roll your beef frank over and grill each side of your frank until the ends of the frank start to split. Because outside elements, grill type, and size determine how long it takes to grill the perfect frank, there’s no magic number. That’s why you should use a time range of 5 to 7 minutes for standard beef franks, 7 to 10 minutes for jumbo franks, and 15 minutes for quarter-pound franks. Trial and error will help you determine your sweet spot.
Step 5: Seal in the Flavor
Quickly sear your dogs over direct heat (or directly over the flames) to seal in flavor and get those tasty grill marks. Remove dogs from grill.
Step 6: Toast Your Buns
Two to 3 minutes before your beef franks are fully heated, use a pastry brush to spread melted butter onto your hot dog bun. Place your bun face down on the grill, over indirect heat, perpendicular to the grill grates. Toast for 1 minute. Be sure to remove the bun as soon as your minute is up. Keeping the bun on the grill for too long will dry out the bread.
Elevate the flavor of your hot dog bun by using melted garlic butter.
Step 7: Dress Up Your Dog
Your franks are going to look awfully naked coming off the grill. Dress them up with some tasty toppings. You can prepare your tray of Hunt’s® 100% natural ketchup, Gulden’s® bold yellow mustard, relish, and chopped onion while your grill is heating up.
Take a bite on the wild side and spice up your condiment bar with unexpected additions like mango salsa and Sriracha mayonnaise.
Step 8: Relish the Dog Days of Summer
Place your perfectly grilled beef frank in its bun, and then top the dog with condiments of your choice. Now you’re ready to enjoy a 100% beef frank—and a relaxing day.