Build Your Own Hot Dog Bar

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Disclosure: I’ve partnered with Meijer (my favorite grocery store ever!) to share this post with you. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Barefeet In The Kitchen possible. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Build your own hot dog bar this summer with four awesome combinations – Chicago-Style, Hawaiian, Green Chile Queso, and BBQ Sundaes!

Anyone else as excited for summer as we are right now? Spring felt like it lasted 6 months this year. We may have had to cancel our summer-long road trip, but I’ve been brainstorming ways to make staying local more fun.

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One of the things we’ve done this year is to fully embrace the awesomeness that is summer in Ohio. We’ve spent so much time outdoors already and let me tell you, compared to life in Phoenix in June-July-August? It feels like an entirely different world.

I’ve partnered with Meijer to share some summer grilling fun with you today because there is no better way to cook in the summertime. I’ve already told you just how much I love Meijer, but once again, I was reminded of how terrific Meijer is for one-stop shopping.

Build Your Own Hot Dog Bar

I picked up this entire shopping list, paper goods, serving dishes, and the barbecue grill itself the other day while grocery shopping.

While we’ve had a smoker (that we dearly love) for a few years now, there are times when nothing beats the convenience of flipping a switch and being able to toss things on the grill in just minutes.

Sean and I have been talking for a few months about replacing the gas grill that we left in Phoenix with some friends and we had the perfect opportunity for that this week when I saw all the grills on sale at Meijer.

Build Your Own Hot Dog Bar

All five of us are big fans of the hot dog. Most of the time, I’m pretty happy with a classic dog topped with just ketchup, mustard, and relish. But other times? It can be a whole lot of fun to mix things up.

However you are assembling your hot dogs, you’ll want to check out these summer side dishes to finish off a terrific meal or barbecue with friends.

If you’re grilling and enjoying the weather outside, these salads without mayonnaise are always a hit. From Creamy Pasta Salad to Cucumber Tomato Salad, Tangy Italian Pasta Salad to this Balsamic and Basil Berry Salad, the odds are good that you’re going to find at least one of these salads in my fridge for the next few months.

Wake up your grilling this year with a hot dog bar!

Green Chile and Cheese

As much as my family loves green chile, this combination was a guaranteed win. There are a couple of different ways you can make this one.

My first choice is to stir together a batch of Queso Dip while the hot dogs are on the grill. Top the hot dogs in the buns with a generous drizzle of warm Queso. Then add as much or as little green chile as you like.

In the case of my oldest son, I can pretty much guarantee that the hot dog will be fully hidden by as much green chile as possible.

Don’t feel like making queso? Just top the hot dogs with a slice of your favorite cheese (we like Pepper Jack) as they finish grilling.

Chicago Style Hot Dogs

My sister Jenny and her husband Jason introduced us to Chicago dogs (made their way) about ten years ago on one of our annual family camping trips.

A classic Chicago dog typically includes fresh tomatoes, a dill pickle spear, sweet pickle relish, onion, maybe pepperoncini, and a squeeze of yellow mustard. You just pile everything over the hot dog in the bun and dive in.

Jenny and Jason like to swap out the dill pickle spear with fresh cucumber slices, chopped small. I LOVE the fresh vegetable taste of the cucumber with the tomato. But, I also love a classic Chicago dog with a dill pickle.

I recommend trying both versions and seeing which one you like best. They’re both delicious.

For a real Chicago dog experience, you’ll want to brush the outside of the buns with warm melted butter and sprinkle them with poppy seeds.

Chicago-style Hot Dogs and Hawaiian Dogs are a couple of family favorites!

Hawaiian Hot Dogs

I dearly love fresh pineapple, so a sweet and spicy hot dog combination needed to happen when I was dreaming up ideas for a hot dog bar.

Yes, you can make this with canned or frozen (and thawed) pineapple, but the flavors won’t be as strong. There’s just something fantastic about fresh pineapple and nothing else really compares.

To make Hawaiian hot dogs, you’ll want to chop the fresh pineapple small and then add a scoop on top of the hotdogs. (If you have an extra minute or two, this Pineapple Jalapeno Salsa is amazing on these too!)

Add red onions, cilantro, and a drizzle of your favorite barbecue sauce. Want to make it extra special? Try a homemade bbq sauce. You just might never buy it from the store again.

BBQ Sundae Dogs

I’m willing to bet that you aren’t surprised to see this combination here. It’s a fairly well-established fact that I love a great BBQ Sundae, right?

To make these, you’ll want to throw together a batch of everyone’s favorite coleslaw. Then, either start some baked beans in the crock-pot or pick up some baked beans at the deli counter at Meijer. Store-bought will work just fine here for both the coleslaw and the beans if you want to simplify things.

Top each hot dog with a drizzle of your favorite barbecue sauce, a scoop of baked beans, and a generous portion of coleslaw.

DIY Hot Dog Bar - with four different delicious combinations

How To Build A Hot Dog Bar

Grill the hot dogs and toast the buns.

Set the toppings out while the hot dogs are on the grill.

Let each person assemble their hot dogs with as much or as little of each topping as they like best.

I hope that you love these hot dogs as much as we do!

Meijer's Gourmet Griller Buns are a hit.

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DIY Hot Dog Bar - with four different delicious combinations

Build Your Own Hot Dog Bar

5 from 1 vote
DIY Hot Dog Bar with four different combinations
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Hawaiian Hot Dogs

  • fresh pineapple, chopped small
  • red onions, thinly sliced
  • fresh cilantro
  • barbecue sauce

Green Chile and Cheese

Chicago Style Hot Dogs

  • 6 hot dog buns
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter, for the buns
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds, for the buns
  • roma tomatoes, sliced
  • dill pickle spears
  • sweet pickle relish
  • white onion, very finely chopped
  • pepperoncini, sliced
  • yellow mustard

BBQ Sundae Dogs


  • Grill the hot dogs and toast the buns. Set the toppings out while the hot dogs are on the grill.
  • Let each person assemble their hot dogs with as much or as little of each topping as they like best. Enjoy!
Tried this recipe?Mention @barefeetkitchen or tag #barefeetkitchen!

We had such a great time on our 2018 Summer Road Trip and I enjoyed sharing it with you here along the way. The whole family has been looking forward to a new adventure this summer, but with all of the unknowns, we decided to put it off until next summer.

In the meantime, for a peek into our past summer travels, you can see them all here:

How To Make A Hot Dog Bar

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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  1. Lynne says

    What a fantastic and fun idea for summer cookouts! I love that everyone gets to top their dog the way they’d like. So many great food choices, but I’ve got my eyes on that Chicago Dog for sure!5 stars