Whether it is at a baseball game or a bonfire, a sports event at your house or an outdoor barbeque, hot dogs are one of the most popular foods in the country. This delicious sausage in bread is very simple to make and also very delicious.
However, because a hot dog can use so many different types of sausage, as well as various types of bread, it might be hard to keep track of the calories of this food. If you factor in condiments, then it might make it more difficult.
So how many calories are in your average hot dog? What about other types of bread and meat? How does a condiment change the calorie content of your hot dog?
Well, if you want the answers to these questions and a lot more, then we would suggest reading further.
The History Of The Hot Dog
Most people might associate this type of food with America, but the hot dog actually has German origins.
They were known as franks and they originated in Frankfurt during the latter half of the 13th Century.
During these humble beginnings, the hot dog was made entirely out of pork. However, nowadays, most hot dogs are made from a combination of pork and beef.
If you want a cheaper hot dog, then you might get one that is made from ground turkey and chicken.
Either way, you can guarantee that delicious and meaty flavor from your hot dog product.
How Many Calories Are In A Hot Dog?
Now, as we have mentioned above, there are plenty of types of hot dogs out there with many different brands.
This will certainly distort the calorie content. So here is a list of some popular hot dog brands along with their calories:
- Ball Park Hot Dogs – 160 calories for 49 grams
- Oscar Meyer Hot Dogs – 148 calories for 45 grams
- Hillshire farm Hot Dogs – 240 calories for 76 grams
- Hebrew National Hot Dogs – 150 calories for 49 grams
- Nathan’s Famous Hot Dogs – 150 calories for 47 grams
One method of calculating the exact amount of calories in your hot dog is by finding the calories on the packaging of your sausage and bun separately and adding them together.
If you are adding sauce and you want to be really precise, you’ll have to measure it according to the bottle.
You can get larger sausages that will give you over 300 calories. At the lower end of the spectrum, there are lower-calorie sausages that only contain around 100 kcals.
The average bread bun will be anywhere between 100 and 150 calories. You should add this to the calorie content of your bun if you are going to want to calculate the total amount of calories.
A lot of people might be tempted to skip the calories that come with tomato, BBQ or mayonnaise sauce, but if you want to be completely accurate with your calorie counting, then you should never forget to add them to your final total.
If you are going to be using mustard or ketchup, then you should be adding around 10- 20 calories per tablespoon.
You can also add sweet pickle relish, which is around 20 calories or sauerkraut, which is around 15 calories per serving.
However, in addition to sauces, you might also decide to add other toppings like cheese, onions, jalapenos, bacon or coleslaw.
If you are going to be piling on the toppings, then you could be adding as much as 300 calories to the total calories that come with your meal, so if you are trying to keep them to a minimum, then we would suggest that you only have a one topping rule.
So doing a quick calorie equation, let’s see how all these different toppings add up:
Hot dog – 150 calories
Bun – 100 calories
Ketchup – 40 calories (2 tablespoons)
Cheese – 102 calories (American cheese, 1 slice)
Total – 392 calories
You can use this equation as a rough estimate for your hot dog, especially if you are getting one from a hot dog stand and you don’t have access to the calorie content of the individual ingredients.
Is It Healthy To Eat Hot Dogs?
The traditional type of hot dog is often filled with a lot of sodium and fat, both of which should be severely restricted in anyone’s diet.
If you are having a hot dog as a one-off treat, then it will not do much harm to your diet.
But if you are eating them regularly, then you are running the risk of increasing things like heart and liver disease.
If you are going to make a healthy hot dog, then make sure that you choose one made from wholesome and organic ingredients.
Make sure that the sausage itself is made from high-quality meat. You can source this from your local butcher.
You can also make the bun healthier, as the white buns we are used to seeing are often made from highly processed bread that doesn’t have a lot of nutrition in it.
If you are going to want a few hot dogs over the space of a night, then why not try adding some vegetables to make the whole thing a little healthier?
A lettuce leaf or tomato will make it a lot healthier than a dollop of ketchup.
Make sure that you are getting a balanced diet, containing plenty of fruits and vegetables, as well as nuts, lean meat and fish.
If you have this as the foundation of your diet, then an occasional hot dog will not make you too unhealthy.
We hope that our article on the calorie content of hot dogs has given you a better understanding of this delicious snack and how much you should be indulging them.
Do not make the mistake of glossing over the condiments, as these can add significant calories to your hot dog overall.
We would recommend a one-topping rule such as cheese or onions so that you can keep the overall calorie count low.