How to Reheat Hot Dogs? 8 Methods Explained

How To Reheat Hot Dogs

Although the rule says, “keep cold food cold, and hot food hot,” hot dogs are one of those magic fast food that is just as tasty cold as they are hot. However, hot dogs seem more prevalent, mainly due to the name. Whether you have them cold or hot is a matter of your personal preference and has nothing to do with the taste, as hot dogs are delicious both ways. There are many ways to reheat hot dogs and make them taste as if you had just cooked them. So, how to reheat them? 

You can reheat hot dogs in the microwave, air fryer, sandwich maker, on the stove, in the oven, in the waffle maker, in the sandwich maker, on the grill, or even over a camping fire.

Reheating hot dogs is not rocket science, but due to their nature, they can quickly dry out and lose a significant amount of taste, so you need to be careful how long you reheat them and which method you use. In the following paragraphs, I will describe the methods to reheat hot dogs and give you some tips and tricks to make the most out of your hot dogs. 

How to Reheat Hot Dogs in the Microwave?

Before we start here’s a cheat sheet to help you out.

Methods to reheat hot dogsVerdict
Microwave Effective, but adds moisture 
Stove A great way to reheat hot dogs
Oven Similar to the microwave method, but better
Air fryer Better than the oven and microwave methods
Waffle makerA good method, but it can be sticky
Sandwich makerSimilar to the waffle maker, but more effective
Camping fire An excellent method with the best results, but it can be dangerous
Grill Safe, effective, great results

The microwave is a great way to reheat hot dogs, but it has some side effects. Since the microwave creates a good amount of moisture, you will take out your hot dogs moist and almost boiled from the microwave. That doesn’t have to be bad, but I don’t like my hot dogs wet. 

So, if you’re like me, you should wrap the hot dogs in a paper napkin before placing them in the microwave. You can also place them in a microwave-safe paper box and microwave them without them getting moist all over. 

How Long to Microwave Hot Dogs?

Depending on how much you want to warm the hot dogs, set the microwave timer from one to two minutes and adjust further if you think so. The longer you microwave your hot dogs, the moister they will come out, so in addition to the temperature, have this in mind too. 

How to Reheat Hot Dogs on the Stove?

This is one of the best ways to reheat hot dogs. With this method, you will not only reheat the hot dogs, but this reheating method will also bring back any lost flavor and add even more. The trick is to reheat in a non-stick pan and not add too much oil. 

The hot dogs will release some grease, which will make up for you not adding any. In addition, reheating hot dogs on the stove also doubles as refrying the hot dogs, so they will indeed taste as if they have just been made.

With this method, you can also experiment with seasoning and flavoring and create an entirely new flavor for hot dogs. 

How to Reheat Hot Dogs in the Oven?

Reheating hot dogs in the oven is very similar to reheating them in the microwave, but of the two methods, I’d say that the oven is better. The oven method doesn’t involve much moisture, and the hot dogs will come out nicely warmed up with their natural juices. 

To use this method successfully, don’t wrap the hot dogs in foil; leave them uncovered on the baking tray. Cook for not more than 15 minutes, and adjust the temperature according to the speed and strength of your oven. The oven is an excellent method to reheat a larger quantity of hot dogs. 

How to Reheat Hot Dogs in an Air Fryer?

The air fryer is a very convenient appliance with a wide application, from cooking to reheating food that’s already cooked. The hot air that circulates the air fryer doesn’t create moisture, but just the opposite; it sucks out the excess moisture of the food and works with the natural juices and grease. 

Therefore, reheating hot dogs in an air fryer is an excellent idea; unlike the microwave, it won’t add moisture to your hot dogs, but unlike the oven, there’s no risk of dehydrating them either. Adjust the reheating time to whichever level you need and enjoy. 

How to Reheat Hot Dogs in a Waffle Maker?

A waffle maker is an excellent way to reheat your hot dogs. You will get a kind of toasted-grilled hot dogs in no time and will virtually no effort. Press as hard as you think you need to with the top plate, but make sure you aren’t splitting the hot dog apart. 

It is a good idea to cut the hot dogs in half or three pieces in order to reheat them in the waffle maker more successfully. You can spray some cooking oil to prevent the hot dogs from sticking, but that depends more on the hot plates than the oil. If your waffle maker sticks or the plates have been scratched, don’t use it to reheat hot dogs, as they will definitely stick. 

How to Reheat Hot Dogs Over a Camping Fire?

Reheating hot dogs over a camping fire will give you delicious results. The hot dogs will get a smoky flavor and a new dimension. However, do not reheat them over a roaring flame, but wait for the fire to subside and keep them high over it. 

The point is to smoke the hot dogs, not to burn them. To do this successfully, you need to take safety precautions, i.e., to keep the hot dogs on a long stick and stand as far from the fire as possible. 

While keeping the hot dogs over the fire, turn them all the time because keeping them on one side will soon burn that side. Again, the fire isn’t supposed to be strong but significantly subsided, as the point is the smoking of the hot dogs. 

How-To-Reheat-Hot-Dogs

How to Reheat Hot Dogs in a Sandwich Maker?

The sandwich maker method is pretty similar to the waffle iron method, yielding nearly the same results. However, the sandwich maker is designed to deal with harder food to bake, as it successfully cooks meat and roasts vegetables. Therefore the sandwich maker will yield better results than the waffle maker. 

Still, you need to be careful and not press the hot dogs, but just leave the top plate go as low as it can on its own, with you pressing it very gently near the end. Leave the hot dogs to reheat for about five minutes and see if you’d like them even warmer. 

This is probably the most delicious way to reheat your hot dogs. However, it isn’t all that practical and is somewhat dangerous. 

How to Reheat Hot Dogs on the Grill?

The grill is the perfect place to reheat your hot dogs. Whether gas or wood grill, it will do a great job. This is an excellent method for two reasons- no mess and delicious hot dogs. 

Throw the hot dogs on the grill and let them sizzle. Don’t forget to turn them over, as they will likely burn if kept on one side. Also, feel free to experiment and add other ingredients to the grill to mix the flavors. 

You can throw some onion rings on the grill that will release the aroma and make your hot dogs even more flavorful. 

How To Reheat Hot Dogs

How to Het Up Hot Dog Buns?

In essence, the methods to reheat hot dog buns are the same or very similar to the hot dog reheating methods, minus the campfire.

Whichever method you choose, it is always a great idea to add some flavor to the buns. If you grill the buns, use the waffle or sandwich maker, smear some butter on them or just brush them with cooking oil and let them sizzle for a few minutes. See that the buns aren’t too crispy in the end as they won’t hold the hot dogs and the other ingredients.

If you decide to reheat the buns in the oven, the microwave, the air fryer, or the skillet, place them in the appliance you chose and let them war up. After taking them out, smear some butter on them and sprinkle some spices to add flavor.

Don’t use the campfire method, as bread burns like crazy. 

How to Reheat Grilled Hot Dogs?

The best way to reheat grilled hot dogs is to pop them in the oven, the microwave, or the air fryer. 

If you use the microwave, it is best to wrap the hot dogs in parchment paper and set the timer to 30 seconds. This way, the paper will absorb the excess microwave moisture leaving your hot dogs warm and dry.

If you use the oven, wrap the hot dogs in aluminum foil and cook them for five to ten minutes at medium heat. The aluminum foil wrap will allow the hot air to circulate around the hot dogs, warming them evenly on each side. 

If you choose the air fryer, you don’t need to wrap the hot dogs in anything, just pop them in the air fryer and set the temperature you want. Don’t reheat the hot dogs for more than ten minutes. 

Can You Eat Cold Hot Dogs?

Yes, you can eat cold hot dogs. As I already mentioned, hot dogs do well both hot and cold, and depending on your personal preference, you could enjoy them both ways. 

However, I must highlight that the reheating of hot dogs isn’t just a matter of taste, but safety too. Reheating hot dogs means thermally processing them once more to make sure that all the possible harmful bacteria are eliminated. 

To have your hot dogs cold, you must first be absolutely sure that they are safe, and no matter what, never eat them after five days in the fridge, reheated or cold; it makes no difference at this point. 

Cold hot dogs have a more expressive flavor. They will be saltier, spicier, and hotter-tasting. You will also feel their fattiness and greasiness as the fat hardens as the hot dog gets colder. 

However, cold hot dogs are less juicy than hot ones, but on the plus side, they allow for the rest of the ingredients to shine without dominating the entire story too much. 

Hot dogs are more tender and juicier than cold hot dogs. They also stick to the buns leaving flavor, making the bun even tastier. Hot dogs tend to dominate the meal and don’t mix well with fresh ingredients such as lettuce, cucumber, or tomatoes. 

Therefore, if you want to add fresh vegetables to your hot dog sandwich, I’d suggest using a cold hot dog instead of a hot one. 

How Many Times Can You Reheat Hot Dogs?

You can reheat hot dogs only once. Nothing will happen to the hot dog in terms of safety if you reheat it more than once, but each reheating cycle dehydrates the hot dog more and more, making it dry and harder to chew.

If you have to reheat the hot dog for a second time, use water in the process. Since the microwave adds moisture, it would be the best way to reheat your hot dog for a second time. 

Don’t use the air fryer for a second reheat, nor the sandwich or waffle maker. If you use the oven, place a metal bowl with water inside the oven to make up for the lost juice in the hot dog. If you use the stove, pour some oil inside the skillet, and if you use the grill, cover the hot dogs with a tall lid.

What Is the Best Way to Reheat Hot Dogs?

All of the hot dog reheating methods we mentioned are good and effective. However, they all give different results and saying that one is the best is not entirely true. It is essential to know the pros and cons of each method so you know which one would work best for you.

The plus side of the microwave method is that it is very simple and mess-free. However, the microwave creates steam inside the compartment that just stands there, doesn’t circle, and doesn’t go anywhere, making your hot dog moist. 

The microwave is a good solution for a second reheating, as there are better ways to initially reheat the hot dogs.

The air fryer is a great reheating method; the hot air circulates and heats up all sides equally. It is simple to use and mess-free, but the hot dogs can come a bit on the drier side. If you don’t mind this, go for it. 

The sandwich maker and the waffle maker, along with the grill, fall under the grilling category. These three methods yield great results. They are also very easy to use and don’t create a mess in your kitchen. I’d say that the best of these three is the grill. 

My personal favorite is the sandwich maker method. I like the slightly pressed hot dogs and the crispy edges. 

The campfire method is the most delicious one, but it is also dangerous, so if you’re not an experienced camper and unless you know exactly what you are doing, this method is not for you. 

The stove method is my second favorite, but it gets messy afterward. The skillet-sizzled hot dogs, with their greasy edges and slightly brown color they cannot otherwise get, are delicious. If you reheat the hot dogs for a second time, don’t forget to add some oil before you throw the hot dogs on the skillet.

The oven method also results in delicious hot dogs, and you can use this method to reheat the hot dogs for a second time.

Why Are Hot Dogs Called Hot Dogs?

The hot dog has definitely got a very rich historical background tightly linked with the history of the German sausage. However, the reason why it is called a “hot dog” remains a mystery to this day. 

What is certain is that the word “dog” was used as slang for sausages, but how this word came into use with this meaning is still uncertain. Some theories claim that the German sausage used dog meat, and with time this became a known fact throughout the world, and therefore the English word “dog” became slang for the word “sausage.” 

However, this is just one of many theories which are hard to prove, as the hot dog dates from way back. 

  • Laura is the owner of Julie's Cafe Bakery. She started this blog with her grandma Julie who introduced her to the amazing world of cooking. She likes to experiment with different flavors, and her favorite flavors combo is chicken with coconut milk, curry and peanuts!