Hot dogs are a type of sausage that are most commonly served in a bun with fillings like onion, mustard, ketchup, relish, sauerkraut, cheese and/or mayonnaise. They are usually pink in color, but are sometimes brown, and are usually served hot. The origin of the name hot dog is a cause of much debate, but it was first used in the 19th century. Around this time there were accusations that sausage makers were using dog meat in their products and many believe that this is where the name came from. Let’s take a look at what modern hot dogs are made of.
What are hot dogs made of?
Despite their name, and early reputation, hot dogs don’t actually contain any dog meat. The standard hot dog may contain meat trimmings and fat from pork, beef, chicken and turkey. They also contain flavors such as garlic, paprika and salt. The last ingredient is preservatives to ensure the hot dog does not spoil. The most common preservatives used in hot dogs are sodium nitrate and sodium erythorbate. The meat used in hotdogs are called trimmings, which are the leftovers and/or less desirable pieces of meat from the butchering process. Generally speaking hot dogs made from pork and meat are more expensive than chicken or turkey hot dogs. However, some brands of hot dogs use 3 or all 4 meats mixed together.
Did you know?
Most brands of hot dogs are high in sodium, fat and nitrites. This means that they should only be consumed occasionally as a part of a balanced diet.
Most hot dogs sold in the United States are “skinless” hot dogs. However, some manufacturers produce hot dogs in casings, which are traditionally made from sheep intestines.