Step Up Your Hot Dog Game This 4th of July Weekend

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Fourth of July weekend is upon us and that means so are more grilling opportunities. Also approaching is the annual Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest, the most American form of celebration allowed on live television. For your own party, throw out your ketchup and substitute these toppings instead for a more filling and creative cookout. 

1. Chicago Hot Dogs
COURTESY (LORI LYNN/TASTEWITHTHEEYES.COM)
  • Courtesy (Lori Lynn/tastewiththeeyes.com)
This ball-park classic from the Midwest is great for those who want to step out of their ketchup-comfort zone. Get the recipe at tastewiththeeyes.com

2. Buffalo Dogs
COURTESY (CATHY/NOBLEPIG.COM)
  • Courtesy (Cathy/noblepig.com)
Spicy and tangy with blue cheese crumbles and chives for crunch. Get the recipe at noblepig.com

3. Texas Chili Cheese Dogs
COURTESY (MELANIE PRESCHUTTI/KITCHENENCOUNTERS.COM)
  • Courtesy (Melanie Preschutti/kitchenencounters.com)
A hometown favorite that you won't mind getting sloppy seconds. Get the recipe at kitchenencounters.com

4. Bacon Mac 'N Cheese Dogs on Hawaiian Rolls
COURTESY (CHEF KEONI SIMMONS/KINGSHAWAIIAN.COM)
  • Courtesy (Chef Keoni Simmons/kingshawaiian.com)
If you can't support this holy matrimony of home-style favorites, you need to move to Canada. Get the recipe at kingshawaiian.com

5. Reuben Dogs
COURTESY (MEGAN PENCE/KENO/COUNTRYCLEAVER.COM)
  • Courtesy (Megan Pence/Keno/countrycleaver.com)
Double the meat and add extra crunch with saur kraut, substitute the ketchup for thousand island and you have one hell of a hot dog. Get the recipe at countrycleaver.com

6. Mexican Mole Dogs
COURTESY (MEGAN PENCE/KENO/COUNTRYCLEAVER.COM)
  • Courtesy (Megan Pence/Keno/countrycleaver.com)
A Tex-Mex meal that packs a lot of flavor from all corners. Get the recipe at countrycleaver.com

7. Pulled Pork and Tomatillo Ranch Dogs
COURTESY (TIFFANY/LECREMEDELACRUMB.COM)
  • Courtesy (Tiffany/lecremedelacrumb.com)
Go ahead and admit it. There's something oddly sexually appealing about that drippy sauce. Get the recipe at cremedelacrumb.com

8. Jalapeno Pretzel Dogs with Cheddar Beer Sauce
COURTESY (JESSICA/HOWSWEETEATS.COM)
  • Courtesy (Jessica/howsweeteats.com)
You don't need to go to the mall to pick up these puppies. Paired perfectly with either cheddar beer cheese sauce or honey mustard. Get the recipe at howsweeteats.com

9. Seattle Dogs with Carmelized Onions and Cream Cheese
COURTESY (DES/LIFESAMBROSIA.COM)
  • Courtesy (Des/lifesambrosia.com)
Cream cheese as a hot dog topping may sound sacrilegious, but that's how are Pacific Northwest brothers do it. Get the recipe at lifesambrosia.com

10. Italian Sausage and Peppers Dog
COURTESY (RACHELRAYSHOW.COM)
  • Courtesy (rachelrayshow.com)
If regular hot dogs taste meh to you, substitute with a Italian sausage on a hoagie with sauteed peppers for a sweeter, juicier dog. 

11. Sweet Chili Thai Peanut Dog
COURTESY (MEGAN PENCE/KENO/COUNTRYCLEAVER.COM)
  • Courtesy (Megan Pence/Keno/countrycleaver.com)
Whip up something unorthodox for your party goers with a sweet chili sauce, crunchy peanuts and chutney. Get the recipe at countrycleaver.com

12. Octopus Hot Dog Bites
COURTESY (TINA/JUSTPUTZING.COM)
  • Courtesy (Tina/justputzing.com)
Picky-eater kids are the worst. Use these cute little distractions to shoot off some fireworks while they eat safely inside. Get the recipe at justputzing.com

13. Chorizo Pigs with Cilantro Dip
COURTESY (CON POULOS/COMMUNITYTABLE.COM)
  • Courtesy (Con Poulos/communitytable.com)
Appetizers or hot dogs on-the-go for a full day of Fourth of July activities. Get the recipe at communitytable.com

14. Pulled Pork Hot Dog with Broccoli Slaw
COURTESY (JUSTINE/COOKINGANDBEER.COM)
  • Courtesy (Justine/cookingandbeer.com)
Just slide everything you have grilling right now onto a hot dog bun and you'd have this barbecue beauty. Get the recipe at cookingandbeer.com

15. Bacon-Wrapped Sonoran Hot Dog
COURTESY (CHUNGAH/DAMNDELICIOUS.NET)
  • Courtesy (Chungah/damndelicious.net)
What isn't on this bun? You can't see it, but there are beans lining the inside of the bun. BEANS. Get the recipe at  damndelicious.net. 

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