Hot Dog Chili

| June 30, 2019 | 22 Comments

Hot Dog Chili

Follow our quick and easy, step-by-step, photo illustrated instructions to learn how to make our North Carolina style Hot Dog Chili. Printable recipe included.


Hot Dog Chili, enjoy.
Hot Dog Chili, did someone say let’s cook out?


Hot Dog Chili, slider.

If I had a dollar for every hot dog I’ve ever enjoyed, I could buy a brand new car. I grew up eating hot dogs and still enjoy them to this day. Of course, nothing makes one any better than to find it made with fresh homemade Cole Slaw and most certainly with homemade chili.

I often thought about owning one of those street type food carts with the big umbrella and setting it up on a street corner to sell nothing but hot dogs and cold sodas. I’d sell one hundred per day, then close up and go home. But alas, it never happened.

When I was a kid, Mama worked at a meat packing company that made hot dogs, bologna, and other such type of things. Mama was able to purchase these items of course, buying hot dogs 100 to a box at a time. We always seemed to have hot dogs in the refrigerator.

Mama made her own homemade chili and homemade Cole Slaw whenever we had hot dogs for lunch or supper. Nothing makes a better hot dog than homemade chili and slaw, did I mention that?

Also, our next door neighbor drove a Coca-Cola® truck and pretty much kept us supplied with coke all the time. His brother stayed straight across the street and drove a truck for a potato chip company. His son and I were best friends, when he wasn’t throwing rocks at anything that moved. Smile. Yep, it was pretty close to Heaven where I lived.

Around my neck of the woods, people seem to prefer a somewhat chunky type of chili for their hot dogs and hamburgers. That’s what we do in this recipe, but feel free to chop yours up much finer if that’s what you like.

And, for me, a boiled hot dog is just about as good as one cooked on a grill. I eat them either way.

Did I mention we like the RED hot dogs? Those all beef types just don’t compare either. What’s your favorite?

Ready to give our hot dog chili a try? Alright then, let’s head on out to the kitchen, and… Let’s Get Cooking!


Hot Dog Chili, you'll need these ingredients.
Hot Dog Chili Recipe, you’ll need these ingredients.


Hot Dog Chili, crumble beef in sauce pot.
Place a sauce pot over Medium heat on the stove top. Add the pound of ground beef and crumble it up with a wooden spatula as it begins to cook.


Hot Dog Chili, cook until browned.
Stir the beef and let it cook until fully browned. Drain the grease from the beef into a separate container and discard.


Hot Dog Chili, add the water.
Add the water to the ground beef.


Hot Dog Chili, add the salt.
Add the salt.


Hot Dog Chili, add the black pepper.
Add the black pepper.


Hot Dog Chili, add the chili powder.
Add the chili powder. I add a Tablespoon but you might like to add less. You can start out with a teaspoon if in doubt, then add more later to get it tasting like you prefer it. Don’t be afraid to experiment and make the recipe your own. There are many options when it comes to making chili.


Hot Dog Chili, add the ketchup.
Add the ketchup.  Give everything a good stir, let the pot come back up to a boil, then REDUCE the heat down to Medium-Low and let the chili simmer for about 20 minutes. Keep an eye on it so all the liquid doesn’t simmer away completely. Stir it about halfway through.


Hot Dog Chili, add the sugar.
Add the sugar. You’ve got to have a little sugar. Smile.


Hot Dog Chili, add the vinegar.
Add the apple cider vinegar.


Hot Dog Chili, simmer until done.
Stir everything once again and let the chili continue to simmer until it reaches the desired consistency you prefer. Some folks like a thick chili, others prefer one a bit more on the juicy side. A wetter chili soaks into the buns more so I prefer a somewhat thicker type. It’s totally your choice. Smile.


Hot Dog Chili, enjoy.


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Hot Dog Chili, printbox

Hot Dog Chili

  • Author: Steve Gordon
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: Varies
  • Category: Side dish, beef
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: American, Southern


Quick and easy hot dog chili recipe. Great for hot dogs and hamburgers, or just chili dogs with cheese.



1-lb of Ground Beef
1/2 cup Water
3/4 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
1/4 cup Ketchup
1 teaspoon Sugar
1 teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar


Place ground beef in sauce pot over Medium heat.
Crumble the beef as it begins to cook.
Cook beef until browned. Drain and discard any grease.
Add the water.
Add the salt.
Add the black pepper.
Add the chili powder
Add ketchup.
Stir and let simmer for about 20 minutes.
Add sugar.
Add vinegar.
Stir again and let cook until chili reaches desired thickness.

Keywords: hot dog chili, hamburger chili, chili dogs, chili powder, ketchup, north carolina style chili

Your Comments:

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Be Blessed!!!


You might also like this: Livermush Sandwich with Chili recipe

Or, maybe this one:  Grilled Vidalia Steaks with Sweet Italian Sausage

Perhaps this:  Butter Pecan Ice Cream Recipe




Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Category: Side Dishes

About the Author ()

Award Winning Food Preservationist, Fisherman, Author of three cookbooks. "From Mama's Big Oval Table, From Mama's Big Oval Table - BOOK TWO and Carolina Christmas Sweets and Appetizers." Online Contributor to Our State Magazine Newsletter.

Comments (22)

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  1. Donna says:

    I am also a North Carolina Southern Mountain girl I also make my own chili I also put onion in my hamburger along with garlic powder and onion powder chili powder ketchup even a little Worcestershire but everyone loves my chili and like they say in the south hotdogs no good without that coleslaw homemade on it Thanks for sharing I’ll try your recipe also

  2. Mike says:

    Hi, Steve
    Great recipe and so easy to make!
    I’ve never tried hot dogs with ‘slaw but it sounds good. Do you have a recipe to share?

  3. Hey Steve! Greetings from Virginia (and to Dorothy from SA! I have friends from Johannesburg and they love slaw dogs as we call them here). Great recipe that you shared with the folks! I really liked it. Stay safe!

  4. Hi Steve, The Chili recipe sounds delicious! I am going to try it soon maybe on the 4th. I have to eat the all meat version these days but yours sounds good like the old days. They were the best, ha. I have recently heard some friends talk about collard sour kraut they had in North Carolina and South Carolina. Did you ever hear of that or enjoy it? I found several recipes on the net and I am going to try it as soon as I find a supply of collards. This is said to be the best eating & so healthy so I must try it. Love your recipes and your sweet spirit & smiles. Oh how we need that today. Keep sending the smiles, you don’t see them often with the masks these days, ha. Blessings, Betty

  5. Beckie High says:

    Best chili recipe I have found. From a Carolina girl living in VA. When we go home, I go straight to a mom and pop grill and get a cheeseburger all the way, which is chili and that’s it. I did add onion powder and garlic powder, just a tad. This will be my go to. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Barbara says:

    Love chilli dogs. Growing up in North Carolina the hot dogs were so different. We also put slaw on them. What brand dog do you use? Back then we called them red hots. Can’t seem to find them up North.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Barbara, I use a Stevens brand, Gwaltney, Jesse Jones, Bright Leaf, Smithfield, whatever I find on sale. Smile. We still have something called a RED HOT but it’s a bit larger and more spicy so to me, it’s not a frankfurter. Smile. I hope you can find some soon. I appreciate your visit and trust you’ll stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  7. Kathy Wolfe says:

    Slaw dog with chili…..heaven.

  8. libby rouse says:

    Steve, I cook like you, always a pinch of sugar in everything, because that’s the way my Mama always cooked, and I am an old, born and raised North Carolina girl!

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Libby, I bet you make some great chili on your own, along with lots of other good stuff. Smile. Gotta add the sugar, if for no other reason than it reminds you of your Mama each time you add it. Right? I appreciate your visit and trust you’ll stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  9. Ted Muse says:

    Hey Steve,
    What is the deal with the sugar in most of your recipes? Are you sure your from the south?

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Ted, It’s as much habit as anything I guess. Mama put a bit of sugar in a lot of the things she cooked for various reasons. It just seems to make them better, but that’s my personal opinion. I’ll just ignore your questioning my roots. Smile. Thanks for stopping by. I do appreciate your visit and hope you’ll stop by again… real soon. I’ll even loan you a cup of sugar if you need it. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

      • Paula Harris says:

        Hey Steve,
        My mother in law always told me to put a pinch of sugar in everything you cook. We are talking green beans even. Said it just makes everything taste better. Just a pinch though. I do it most of the time and guess what, I’m from the south and so was she. Have a blessed week.

  10. Lucy R says:

    Sounds very good! Love chili dogs, but always use Wolf brand, no beans, for ours. Must try your chili this 4th as we’re doing the outdoor grill thing if weather holds out in Houston. It’s hot hot hot humid in my neck of the woods. Like getting slapped in the face with a warm wet towel every time we step outside. Ughh. Love your site, Steve!

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Lucy, Thank you for sharing your comments. I hope the weather was good for your 4th of July celebrations. I fully understand the hot weather, we’re getting our fair share of it the past few days as well. I appreciate your visit and trust you’ll stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  11. Dorothy Berry says:

    This looks interesting – guess what I’m making for supper tonight! Got home late and I’ve got all the ingredients!Well, maybe a BIT different, because the viennas are smoked and a mix of pork, chicken & beef (my usual). The way I’ve always had hot dogs is with hot English mustard – Colman’s, of course – and lots of softly fried onions – that’s my English upbringing. Here in South Africa people usually just add a mild squeezy mustard and/or ketchup, so this will be really different. I’m looking forward to it. (Might miss the hot mustard and onions though!!) Like Shelia’s idea of the garlic but I’ll save that for second time round and maybe use fresh crushed cloves rather than powder.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Dorothy, The only Vienna’s I know anything about here in America are the short ones that come in the can. We call them Vienna Sausages, but apparently your hot dogs are referred to as a Vienna. Is that right? Just curious. I enjoy my hot dogs with grilled onions at times, but mostly just chopped raw onions sprinkled on top. Thanks for sharing your comments. I do hope you enjoy your hot dogs. And, greetings again to South Africa all the way from North Carolina. It’s always good to hear from you, and again, I’m thankful that you subscribe to the Newsletter. Be sure to stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

      • Dorothy Berry says:

        Hi Steve, First the recipe turned out fabulous! As for your question, I think that would be about right. When I stayed in Calgary 50 years ago, my friend called them Wieners (pronounced weeners) if they went on a plate with vegetables and potatoes; but in a roll with sauce the whole thing became a hot dog. Some people use the bigger Frankfurters, but I prefer the milder Vienna. Very popular here is the “Boerie roll” which is a piece of the local farmstyle sausage called Boerewors, but the children certainly prefer the Vienna (or maybe that’s really their moms as Viennas are much cheaper!). Now I have to introduce my friends to the chili and coleslaw version, I think it will be a hit. By the way, the only tins I’ve seen Viennas in is where they’re mixed in with baked beans. We get our Viennas and Franks in the delicatessen section of the supermarket. Interesting how things can be the same yet different. Go well!

      • AN HOWITT says:

        I know my reply is years after your post, but I HAD to reply to your comment. Vienna dogs are a brand of freshly made ( these Vienna’s are not the canned variety) hot dogs made in Chicago IL. I am sure that you have heard of the famous Chicago hot dogs. Every single famous Chicago dog is made with a Vienna brand hot dog. The Vienna company prides themselves with an immaculately clean processing facility, so much so that they have visitors center where guests can watch the entire hot dog making process. The bulk of Vienna’s business is hot dogs in various lengths and thickness. They also produce a few types of deli counter sandwich/lunch meats, as well as polish ( favored second to the hotdog in Chicago ) ie kielbasa style sausages,
        smoked sausage, the famous bright
        green Chicago hot dog relish, picked sport peppers ( mini green low/ medium spiced chili peppers- looks like a baby jalapeño pepper) and giardinara ( a spicy crunchy pickled
        mixed vegetable relish made up of
        sweet and hot peppers, celery, and
        cauliflower and oil). The sport peppers, and both relishes are standard issue on the Chicago hot dog, as well as mustard ONLY never ketchup, 3 half round slices of a pear shaped tomato, if desired finely diced sweet onions and a sprinkle
        of celery salt. So now you know what a true American Vienna sausage is.

  12. Phyllis Ivey says:

    Sounds like a great recipe, I’m going to try it!

  13. Shelia says:

    I do make my own chili by my Moms recipe. It’s actually a lot like yours but we add garlic powder and no ketchup . Then when you reheat it ( as I make it and freeze it so it’s always on hand) I add a little water to the consistency I want. I’m anxious to try your recipe now .

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