The History of the Hotdog Sandwich

A hotdog sandwich, more commonly known as “hot dog” is a dish that typically consists of a grilled or deep-fried sausage served on bread, but its preparation can vary around the world. Mustard, ketchup, mayonnaise, relish, and cheese sauce are common condiments. Onions, sauerkraut, jalapeños, chili, grated cheese, coleslaw, bacon, and olives are popular additions.

The term “hot dog” may also be used to refer to the sausage. A frankfurter (Frankfurter Würstchen, or just known as frank) is the meat used in this dish. The names of these sausages are sometimes used to describe their completed meal. The word “Würstchen” is German for “little sausage” and “frankfurter” or “frank” refers to the city of Frankfurt, Germany where these sausages were first created.

Frankfurter Würstchen

In New York City, it is common to refer to a hot dog as a “dirty water dog”, alluding to the water used in preparation.

The History of the Hotdog

So let’s explore the history of the hotdog sandwich. There are many different stories about how it came about, but the most popular one is that it was created by a German immigrant in New York City in the 1860s.

This man, named Charles Feltman, owned a restaurant on Coney Island and is said to have come up with the idea of putting a sausage on a bun so that his customers could eat it without getting their hands dirty. He sold 3,684 dachshund sausages in a bun that year. By 1904, his business had grown so much that he had 1,500 employees and was selling an estimated 1.5 million hot dogs per year!

The word “hotdog” actually came about because of this popularity. People would be queuing up to buy Feltman’s hot dogs and started calling them “RED HOT DOGS”. This was then shortened to just “HOT DOGS” and eventually just “DOGS”. The name stuck and has been used ever since!

Another story about the origins of the hot dog sandwich claims that it was created by German immigrants in the United States in the late 1800s. This story says that in 1893 a German immigrant named Antonoine Feuchtwanger sold hot dogs from a pushcart in St. Louis, Missouri. He is often credited with putting the first hot dog on a bun.

Feuchtwanger’s cousin, Edmund Toeller, soon joined him in the business and they started selling their hot dogs at baseball games. This is where the term “Sporting Dogs” comes from. They became so popular that by 1904 they were selling over 500,000 hot dogs per year!

Carts selling frankfurters in New York City, circa 1906. The price is listed as “3 cents each or 2 for 5 cents”.

Another possible origin says that the brothers Nathan and Henry Frank also started selling hot dogs in New York City around this time. They are believed to be the ones who came up with the idea of using a boiled frankfurter rather than grilled or fried. This made their hot dogs much safer to eat and helped them stand out from the competition.

Its difficult to say the origin of the hotdog but what is safe to say is that by the early 1900s, hot dogs were becoming popular all over the United States. They were easy to make, cheap to buy, and could be eaten on the go. It’s no wonder that they became such a staple of American culture!

In 2016, Americans consumed 7 billion hot dogs! That’s enough to stretch from New York City to Los Angeles more than 5 times! And while we think of hot dogs as being quintessentially American, they are actually enjoyed all over the world.

So there you have it, the history of the hot dog sandwich. It’s a simple food with a complex history. But one thing is for sure, it’s here to stay!

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Hotdog Recipe

The History Of The Hotdog Sandwich



  • 1 hotdog
  • 1 hotdog bun
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon relish (optional)


1. Start by cooking your hotdog. You can do this by boiling it, grilling it, or even microwaving it. Once it is cooked, place it in the hotdog bun.

2. Add your desired condiments. Spread on the ketchup, mustard, and relish (if using). Enjoy!

For more hot dog recipe: 20 Hot dog recipes

Fun facts about hotdogs

-The hotdog is a sandwich that consists of a sausage on a bun. Simple and tasty!

-The first hotdogs were made in Germany.

-Hotdogs became popular in the United States after German immigrants started selling them at baseball games.

-Today, there are many different types of hotdogs, including vegetarian and vegan options.

-Today, Americans consume about 20 billion hotdogs every year! That’s about 70 hotdogs per person.

So there you have it: a brief history of the humble hotdog. funny, delicious, and perfect for any occasion!


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