How long to boil hot dogs? Cooking tips and more on these favorite franks

Hot dogs are the perfect food to dress up to your taste. From adding ketchup and mustard to pickles and onions, hot dogs are great for any occasion, especially family barbecues or baseball games. 

No matter if you throw one on the grill, stovetop or even roast one over a flame, hot dogs are a crowd favorite. Even though the food is fairly simple to prepare, things could go awry during the cooking process. 

So, here is a guide on how long to boil hot dogs and more information about the famous frankfurter. 

How long to boil hot dogs?

Hot dogs should be boiled for around four to six minutes. But if the hot dog is frozen, it should be boiled for nine to 10 minutes.

You can choose to boil your hot dog in water or beer, depending on your preference. Regardless of the your liquid choice, one refrigerated hot dog should be boiled uncovered for four to six minutes. Once it is done, remove the hot dog from the pot and place on a paper-towel-lined plate to drain the liquid. 

Boiling your hot dog in beer can give it a mellow flavor and tender texture, which differs from boiling it in regular water. 

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How do you know when boiled hot dogs are done?

You can tell when a hot dog is done cooking once its internal temperature increases after being exposed to heat for a period of time, according to Before being consumed, hot dogs should reach an internal temperature of at least 140 degrees Fahrenheit, says Coleman Natural Foods. 

Another general rule for if a hot dog is cooked is to check its texture. Fully cooked hot dogs will have wrinkly skin and will become darker in color

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What's really in a hot dog?

The main ingredient in hot dogs is meat, which can be beef, pork or poultry (such as turkey or chicken). The meat, however, comes from trimmings, which are bits and pieces from cut meat. For example, chicken trimmings are leftovers from separating chicken into thighs and breast pieces. 

Hot dogs also contain up to 15% of mechanically separated pork and poultry. But there should be no bone fragments in hot dogs. During the creation of mechanically separated pork and poultry, the machinery cannot crush or grind the bones; they must be removed basically intact, the USDA says.

A hot dog may not contain more than 30% fat or no more than 10% water, or a combination of 40% fat and added water, according to the Department of Agriculture.

The main ingredient in hot dogs is meat, which can be beef, pork or poultry (such as turkey or chicken).

Read more: What are hot dogs actually made of?