There’s nothing like grilled foods that are both low-maintenance and high-reward. Don’t get us wrong—we love well-marinated ribs and expertly seasoned burger patties—but there’s something so satisfying about a perfectly seared hot dog on a summer day.
While we’ll never say no to the classic grocery store franks and sausages, in the spirit of reopening our backyards and our homes to friends and family long-missed the past year, we’re planning to step things up a little. Sure, your fixings of relish and onions and mustard might stick around, but this list of upgraded links will blow your mind and your taste buds.
There are regional favorites to enjoy, like Coney Island hot dogs and Chicago-style Vienna links, as well as samplers of boudin, boar, and bison sausages. You can’t go wrong with any of the Wagyu options here—the extra richness takes salty and savory flavors to a new level. And why not add proper bratwurst, chorizo, and Polish sausage to your bun rotation? It’s been a while since we’ve allowed ourselves these pleasures in the company of more than a few people, so yes, we’ll take one of each.
Order any of these in time for Memorial Day barbecues, send a set to Dad for Father’s Day, or stock up on multiple packs for the freezer to pop out all summer long. See below for some of the best hot dogs and sausages you know and miss, or have yet to discover.
Feltman’s Coney Island Hot Dogs
If you’re craving that very specific Coney Island dog, Feltman’s is made with the “original” Frankfurter blend of spices and offers versions both with and without the casing. They’re 100% beef and smoked to perfection, and their bundle deal comes with two packs of hot dogs and the classic mustard as well.
Feltman’s Coney Island Big Sampler, $35 at feltmansofconeyisland.com
Porter Road Dry Aged Hot Dogs
If you love dry-aged steak, then this long-link hot dog is for you. All of Porter Road’s beef is pasture-raised and hormone-free, and at just $8 per pack, these hot dogs deliver great bang for your buck.
Dry Aged Hot Dogs, $8 per 10 oz. at porterroad.com
Gourmet Jumbo Franks
These dogs are brat-sized and can be cooked directly from the freezer on a skillet or grill. Pile these high with sauerkraut or mustard and onion for a substantial beef-and-pork link meal.
Omaha Steaks Gourmet Jumbo Franks, $16 for 8 at omahasteaks.com
Waygu Hot Dogs
We’ve touted KC Cattle Co.’s delicious dogs before, and we’ll be ordering them again this summer. Kansas City knows what it’s doing with meat and these links are no exception. Imagine eating a juicy steak on a bun—it’s an experience you need to try for yourself to believe.
Wagyu Gourmet Hot Dogs, 8 for $15.50 at kccattlecompany.com
If you’re looking for a bigger bundle, Rastelli’s offers four 10-ounce packs you can keep frozen for whenever you’re ready (or offer them to the neighbors to make fast friends).
Rastelli’s Waygu Hot Dogs, 16 for $49 at rastellis.com
Snake River Farms Waygu
Of course Snake River Farms makes incredible Waygu hot dogs as well, but you can order a full Waygu grilling kit that covers all the bases (filet mignon, top sirloin, ground beef, hot dogs). Store the cuts in the freezer and savor them for weeks to come.
Waygu Hot Dogs, 2 pounds for $24 at snakeriverfarms.com
Wagyu Grilling Gift, $156 at snakeriverfarms.com
Why not create your own biergarten experience in the backyard with pork brats packed with classic coriander and nutmeg spices. FarmFoods heritage pork is pasture-raised with fully vegetarian feed.
Heritage Pork Bratwurst Sausage Links, $11 per pound, farmfoodsmarket.com
Vienna Beef Chicago Style Hot Dogs
Calling all Chicago-style lovers: You can order the Vienna beef franks and all the fixings in one kit for 16 delicious dogs. According to the company, 700,000 are made daily at the Vienna Beef headquarters to provide the Chicago area (and beyond) with strictly traditional franks. Lucky for you, you can order them delivered to your door, along with buns, peppers, relish, mustard, and celery salt.
Vienna Beef – Chicago Style Hot Dog Kit 16 pack $80 at goldbelly.com
Walter’s Hot Dogs
Walter’s is a local hot dog institution in Westchester, NY, and their beef, pork, and veal hot dogs are an exclusive blend you won’t find in the grocery store. The links are split down the middle (they offer a video tutorial to do it correctly) and they’re served on a toasted bun with signature mustard. This kit packs everything you need for the full experience at home: 24 hot dogs, 16 buns, and 2 jars of Walter’s mustard.
Walter’s Hot Dog Kit – 24 pack, $99 at goldbelly.com
Seemore’s Meat and Veggie Sausages
The founder of Seemore’s comes from a family of butchers, and her love for sausage brought about a delicious and sustainable way to enjoy beef, pork, and chicken sausages. With styles like chicken parm, broccoli melt, and loaded baked potato, these links bring something extra to the table. Even better, there’s a flash sale happening through today to get your orders before Memorial Day.
Loaded Baked Potato Sausage 4-pack (16 sausages), $57 at eatseemore.com
Chicken Parm Sausage 4 pack (16 sausages), $57 at eatseemore.com
If you haven’t tried Cajun-style boudin, a cooked pork sausage encased with rice, aromatic vegetables, and seasonings, now’s a good time to go for it. Made with meat that’s raised at a family-owned spot in Natchitoches, Louisiana, this traditional set of boudin plus an alligator and crawfish varieties is a summer treat from Cajun country.
Louisiana Crawfish Boudin Sampler, 1 lb each (3 lb total), $80 at williams-sonoma.com
Filet Mignon Polish Sausages
Omaha Steaks butchers love their filet mignon, so much that they created a sausage to show it off. Traditional kielbasa spices blend with the filet meat for the perfect flavor in every bite. Serve them plain or on a bun (add sauteed peppers and onions for full effect).
Filet Mignon Polish Sausages, $22 for 8 at omahasteaks.com
Chorizo sausage is a standout upgrade to any meat grilling regimen. Try a little spice for your life, and a little extra something to swoon over when it’s dinnertime in the summer.
Chorizo Sausage, 1lb (4 links) for $11 at debragga.com
Wexler’s Chili Cheese Dogs
If Wagyu wasn’t enough, Wexler’s of LA fame has taken it one step further with chili cheese dogs. You can order a pack of 6 for delivery, which includes the hot dogs, chili, potato buns, pickles, cheese, yellow mustard, ketchup, grilled onions, and a bonus of 6 chocolate chip cookies for dessert.
Wagyu Chili Cheese Dog Kit for 6, $119 at goldbelly.com
Fossil Farms Sausage Sampler
If you’re looking for some variation in your sausage experience, Fossil Farms offers the widest meat selection (all sustainably farmed). This sausage sampler includes venison, wild boar, pheasant, and bison, all of which can work for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
Sausage Sampler (4 flavors), $36 at fossilfarms.com
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