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Learn how to make the best Hot Dog Chili Recipe around. With only a few ingredients, you will be making homemade chili from now on. It is tangy and delicious.

Hot dogs topped with chili on a platter with a bowl of diced onions on this side
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No more store bought chili with this easy chili cheese dog recipe. It tastes amazing and makes your hot dog complete.

We love a good hot dog around here. I even learned how to grill hot dogs perfectly every time! But you can’t have a hot dog without this homemade hot dog chili recipe. This hot dog sauce taste so much better than the can hot dog chili and is a classic American Recipe.

If you prefer you can also make, Crock Pot Hot Dog Chili Recipe or this Keto Chili Recipe.

What is the Difference Between Hot Dog Chili and Regular Chili?

Hot dog chili does not have beans and has a sweeter flavor due to the ketchup in the recipe. The texture is smoother than regular chili and not chunky.

It has a fine texture. You might hear some people refer to this as hot dog sauce. This is due to the smooth texture.

The flavor is tangy and not spicy like regular chili. Everyone will love this recipe. This hot dog chili taste so much better than the can stuff and you can control the ingredients.


Hot dog chili ingredients - ground beef, ketchup, hot dogs, salsa, onion powder, tomato paste, garlic powder, chili powder, hot dog buns, diced onions, cheese, mustard

Scroll to the bottom for the full recipe and ingredients for the recipe card.

Substitutions Ideas

  • Ground turkey. You can use ground turkey instead of ground beef in this recipe.
  • Garlic. Minced garlic can be substituted for garlic powder in homemade chili.
  • Spice – If you prefer to have some extra spice, mix in some cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes. You can even mix in some slice or chopped jalapenos.
  • Change Seasoning – Feel free to change the seasoning to what you have on hand.

How to Make Hot Dog Chili

Ground beef in a skillet with a wooden spoon

Step 1 – Brown the ground beef. Add the ground beef to the pan and cook until no longer pink using medium high heat. Once cooked, drain thoroughly to remove any excess grease.

Cooked ground beef in a skillet topped with the seasoning and sauce

Step 2 – Add seasonings to the beef. Now, it is time to add the onion and garlic powder, chili powder, tomato paste, ketchup, salsa and water to the ground beef.  Combine well and simmer for 20 minutes.

Hot dogs in a large pot of water

Step 3 – Cook the hot dogs – You can boil them or grill them.

Hot dog buns on a baking sheet

Step 4 – Warm the buns – Toast the buns until they are slightly crispy and warm.

  • Step 5 – Add your favorite toppings. Top the hot dogs with yellow mustard, shredded cheddar cheese and onion if you desire and add the hot dog chili sauce.
  • Step 6 – Serve. Serve immediately. Salt and pepper to taste. Jump to recipe and full nutritional content including saturated fat.

Recipe Tips

  • Lean ground beef. This type of meat will help the chili not be too greasy.
  • Beef broth. You can thin the chili using beef broth if needed.
  • Olive oil. Sometimes when using lean ground beef olive oil is needed. Just a drizzle should do the trick when cooking.
  • Worcestershire sauce and brown sugar. Change the flavor slightly and add these two ingredients for a change. It is delicious and can be added to taste for bold flavor.
  • Make extra to freeze. It is so delicious and you will be happy to have some in the freezer.
  • Thinner sauce. If you prefer a thinner sauce, use tomato sauce instead of tomato paste.
Hot dogs topped with chili

Topping Ideas

These are just a few ideas for toppings. Feel free to use what you like the best. You can’t go wrong with this easy chili recipe.

What to Serve with Chili Dogs

Hot dogs on a platter topped with chili, diced onions and shredded cheese

How to Use Leftover Chili

  • Sloppy Joes. Feel free to use the leftover chili to make sloppy goes. It is a delicious idea for another dinner. You may like this Easy Sloppy Joes Recipe.
  • Chili Cheese Fries. Jazz up plain French fries with leftover chili. Check out this delicious Cheese Fries recipe.
  • Hamburgers. Top cheeseburgers with homemade chili for a fabulous dinner.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Will Hot Dog Chili Last

The chili will last 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator. Just make sure to store it inside a container with a tight lid. You can also freeze the chili up to 2 months using an airtight container. If you are short on freezer space, I recommend using freezer bags. These freeze flat and can be stacked to save space.
When ready to enjoy, reheat on the stove top or microwave. The chili can also be reheated in the slow cooker. I like this option for cookouts and potlucks. Just use the low setting for 2 to 3 hours.

Can you Make in Advance?

Homemade chili is even better made in advance. The flavor has even more time to combine. I actually prefer to make this a day in advance. It gives the recipe even more time to simmer.
You can even make oven baked chili dogs to prepare the chili dogs in advance. Save time and money and make this hot dog chili in advance.

Easy Hot Dog Recipes

If you make this recipe for hot dog chili, please leave us a comment or a star review. We love hearing from you.

The Best Hot Dog Chili Recipe

4.81 from 42 votes
Learn how to make the best hot dog chili recipe around. With only a few ingredients, you will be making homemade chili from now on.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 8
Cuisine American
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Calories 499


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  • Brown ground beef and drain thoroughly.
  • Add onion powder, garlic powder, chili powder, tomato paste, ketchup, salsa and ½ cup water to the ground beef. Mix and simmer 20 minutes.
  • Heat hot dogs in boiling water or grill them.
  • Toast buns in 300 degree oven until slightly crisp.
  • Top hot dogs with mustard and onion if you desire and add chili and cheese.

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

This one pot meal is perfect for busy nights!

Nutrition Facts

Calories 499kcal, Carbohydrates 32g, Protein 26g, Fat 29g, Saturated Fat 13g, Cholesterol 90mg, Sodium 817mg, Potassium 378mg, Fiber 1g, Sugar 3g, Vitamin A 665IU, Vitamin C 1.4mg, Calcium 304mg, Iron 4.1mg

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Carrie. Welcome to Eating on a Dime!

I’m on a mission to help you cook delicious meals without busting your budget. Together we are going to cook real food… for real families!

4.81 from 42 votes (40 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating


  1. Carrie says:

    I haven’t tried that before but I think that you could easily triple the recipe or makes 4 batches and it should fit easily in a large crock pot.

  2. Kristen says:

    Looks delicious! Looking to do this for a grad party – we’re grilling different meats – brats and dogs!

    How much would I make for a large crockpot full? Triple the recipe? Or more?

    Thank you!

  3. Linda says:

    5 stars
    I would love to try this recipe you have made me so hungry. Got to get up from this chair and rattle some pots and pans??????

  4. wayne curry says:

    Please send chili recipe.Thank you so much.

  5. Mjgrenchik says:

    4 stars
    The taste is very good, however it is not very saucy… only need it for one evening but I like a little more sauce.

  6. Vicki M says:

    I used to work at a 50’s diner that served Coney Dogs—looks similar to this. It was a secret family recipe that even the staff didn’t know the recipe! The only thing I know for sure is that they added shredded potatoes to it. ? Don’t know the amounts—just saw them shredding a BUNCH of potatoes to make BIG batches—then they froze it in smaller batches until we were ready for another batch. We went through a LOT—our Coney Dogs were famous & known as the best around! Might need to experiment & see if I can find a similar match. (The Diner went out of business…

  7. Carrie says:

    Yes – This recipe would be great for freezing.

  8. Kimberly says:

    I haven’t tried this chili yet but can you make a large amount and freeze it?