BBQ Brushed Hot Dogs

When most people think about grilling out or going to the ballpark, they usually have a nostalgic image of biting into a juicy hot dog on a warm summer day. I can’t say this is an image I was familiar with growing up because I really wasn’t a fan of hot dogs. Whenever I was at a cookout, I usually gravitated towards a juicy cheeseburger, crunchy chips, or a forkful of potato salad.

However, this all changed for me a few years ago. After visiting a restaurant in Michigan that specialized in making “gourmet hot dogs”, I realized how much I was missing out on this tried-and-true, American summertime staple.  What excited me the most was the endless options for creating a unique hot dog. From a Mexican hot dog that had guacamole, fresh salsa, queso fresco, and crumbled tortilla chips to a Sweet & Spicy hot dog that had crumbled bacon, pineapple slaw, fresh jalapenos, and roasted garlic mayo, I knew I’d be coming up with my own concoction the next time I grilled out.

After around a dozen times of grilling hot dogs with various toppings and condiments, I’ve landed on a recipe that has made its way into our cooking repertoire. Mix and match your favorite ingredients to come up with your own gourmet hot dogs for your next cookout!


  • Preheat your grill (around 350-400 degrees Fahrenheit).
  • Dip a basting brush into a small bowl of BBQ sauce and completely brush hot dogs with sauce.
  • Place hot dogs on the grill over the heat, then close lid.
  • After 2-3 minutes, rotate hot dog so the other side is exposed to the direct heat and brush on more BBQ sauce.
  • Continue brushing BBQ sauce on the hot dogs every minute until they are heated through and reached your desired level char on the outside. (I usually prefer a coffee-colored sear around the entire hot dog, but make sure not to cook them too long where they burst and begin drying out).
  • Remove from grill and let sit for 3-5 minutes. (If grilling buns, make sure to leave your grill lid open so the buns do not dry out.)
  • Assemble hot dog with your favorite condiments.

Recipe Credit

James Nimmer is the Marketing Manager of Green Bean Delivery and has been with the company since early 2010. When he’s not spreading the word about local farmers, artisans and food events, you can find James cooking up new recipes in his kitchen, getting his hands dirty in his garden, or exploring restaurants throughout the Midwest. Follow his culinary adventures on Instagram: @JamesNimmer