Want to find out what’s in a hot dog?

Are you sure?

You’d laugh, but most people don’t want to know. They’re afraid, because they feel that if they knew, they wouldn’t eat them.
But hot dogs are a staple of America. We eat approximately 20 billion hot dogs a year.

So whatever is in them, is actually pretty tasty. Right?

Dr. Yancey, who is a meat expert, and worked at a hot dog plant says, “I eat hot dogs and feed them to my family. I enjoyed working in the hot dog plant, except that I smelled like hot dogs every day!”.

So What is in a hot dog?

Dr. Yancey replies, “Hot dogs can be made with different types of meat, and if you want to know what’s in a hot dog, you just need to look at the ingredient statement. Most of the time, hot dogs are made with skeletal meat, which are trimmings of the same type of meat that makes ground meat, steaks and roasts. The trimmings are ground up really fine, which is what gives them that homogeneous texture. Salt is added to the meat, giving the mixture a sticky texture. The proteins within the meat stick to each other, and then water is added. The hot dog mixture also has added nitrites, which give the hot dog a pink color and specific flavor. Nitrites also help protect the hot dog from the bacteria that causes botulism. There are all sorts of flavors added to hot dogs, and each hot dog company has their own unique recipe for what makes their hot dogs taste special.”

We all think hot dogs are just leftover animal parts…

But Dr. Yancey explained, “This isn’t really true. Hot dogs are made of animal parts, but they aren’t leftovers. They’re the same stuff that you would make into ground beef or ground pork. The trimmings used to make hot dogs are pieces of the meat that don’t make good steaks and roasts because they aren’t a certain tenderness, size, shape or weight.”

Either way, I’m still eating them. With onions. And mustard. And ketchup. And you?

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.