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Cooking hot dogs in a toaster oven isn’t hard work, but it may be an unfamiliar task to some. In most cases, toasting a hot dog in a toaster oven will be very similar to toasting one in a conventional oven, but there will be a few tweaks you’ll want to make to ensure you get the desired results. 

Cooking hot dogs in a toaster oven can be a fast, easy, and convenient way to enjoy crispy and snappy hot dogs from the comfort of your own kitchen. Join us as we explore how to cook hot dogs in a toaster oven when your next craving for a juicy hot dog strikes. 

How Is a Toaster Oven Different From a Conventional Oven When Cooking Hot Dogs?

A toaster oven and a conventional oven aren’t actually much different when used to cook hot dogs. The main difference between the two appliances is the size and energy used when the appliances are in use. 

You can make many things in a toaster oven, so if you’ve ever wondered how to bake a potato in a toaster oven or how to cook a hot dog in a toaster oven–as we will answer here– you’ll quickly find out that most toaster ovens can handle nearly anything! 

Toaster ovens are small and won’t fit nearly as much as a conventional oven would. Toaster ovens use less energy while cooking and are more convenient in hot and humid weather since they won’t overheat your kitchen. Moreover, toaster ovens are generally regarded as being better at giving foods a nice crisp than a standard oven.

Having said that, conventional ovens provide more space for you to cook large food items or to cook food in bulk when you need to. Conventional ovens are more expensive than toaster ovens, but they are a very standard and common appliance to find in most kitchens and prove to be very useful, especially when cooking for a large crowd.

Still, conventional ovens aren’t necessarily better at cooking hot dogs than a toaster oven would be. Unless you need to cook a bunch of hot dogs at once, some may even argue that a toaster oven is better at cooking hot dogs than a conventional oven! 

Stay tuned for information on how to cook hot dogs in a toaster oven so you can enjoy juicy and delicious hot dogs right in your own home! 

How to Make Hot Dogs in Toaster Oven

Prepare 

Before doing anything, you’ll want to make sure you’re prepared with everything you’ll need. To make hot dogs in a toaster oven, you’ll need foil, a baking tray, your hot dogs, tongs, plates, hot dog buns (if using), and anything you’d like to top your hot dogs with. 

Gather all of your equipment and have it close by for easy retrieval as you go through the steps of toasting your hot dogs. It may seem mundane and unnecessary, but having everything right where you need it helps as hot dogs can cook rather quickly in a toaster oven. 

Note: It is important that you make sure that your hot dogs are fully thawed if they were previously frozen before placing them into your toaster oven. Thawing your hot dogs should be part of the preparation process, and this may take a while to do. Be sure to make time to thaw your hot dogs the proper way by either thawing the hot dogs in the refrigerator for 24 hours or by another safe thawing method.

Never allow your hot dogs to thaw at room temperature, and never place frozen hot dogs in the toaster oven. Not only will this make a watery mess in your oven, but it will also render your hot dog cooked on the outside and ice cold on the inside. 

Gross!

Pre-Slice

Slicing your hot dogs across the top not only makes them look attractive but also serves to allow steam to escape while cooking. Moreover, depending on how you slice the hot dog, the slicing may enable you to place more toppings on the hot dog without the toppings sliding all over your plate and causing a mess.

To slice your hot dog to allow steam to escape, simply take a sharp knife and make small cuts along the top of the hot dog at a straight or diagonal angle. The slices need only to be about ¼ inch deep. 

However, If you wish to stuff your hot dog later, we advise that you make one long vertical deep cut (but not too deep!) along the middle of your hot dog so that you can stuff it with whatever delicious toppings enter your mind. 

Preheat 

Before cooking your hot dogs, you’ll want to preheat your toaster oven to keep your dogs juicy and to provide them with a nice crisp. When toasting your hot dogs, set your toaster oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit on medium-high heat and wait for your toaster oven to heat up appropriately. Once your toaster oven has fully warmed, you’ll almost be ready to cook your hot dogs, bringing you one step closer to a delicious and comforting meal. 

Add a Tray

Before adding your hot dogs to the toaster oven, be sure to place a tray at the bottom of the oven to catch the drippings. Otherwise, you’ll have a greasy and unappetizing mess at the bottom of your toaster oven to have to clean up later; and no one wants that! 

To prepare your tray, simply take aluminum foil and line a baking tray with it. Make sure the baking tray has high enough sides that it can prevent grease and oil from leaking out. Once prepared, place your lined baking tray at the bottom of your toaster oven. 

Start Cooking

Now that you’ve prepared your hot dogs and your baking tray, it’s time to start cooking. Put your hot dogs into your toaster oven (cut side down) and toast for 3 minutes. Grab your tongs and flip your hot dogs (cut side up) to finish the job for another 3-4 minutes. Feel free to leave your hot dogs in for a shorter or longer amount of time until your dogs reach the desired level of crispness that you like. 

Most hot dogs come already fully cooked, so as long as you’ve thawed them, you can feel free to remove the hot dogs from the toaster oven when you’d like to.

Dress ‘Em Up 

Once you’ve removed your hot dogs, load them up with whatever toppings you decide. Need a few ideas? Check out the following toppings to dress up your next batch of toasted hot dogs:

  • Baked Beans
  • Cole Slaw
  • Sauerkraut
  • BBQ Sauce and Onion Rings
  • Chili
  • Pickles, Onion, and Tomato
  • Mac and Cheese
  • Peppers and Onions
  • Ketchup and Mustard (Of Course!)

Note: If you want to top your hot dogs with something that requires melting or warming (such as cheese) you may want to consider adding these toppings during the cooking process. To do so, simply cook your hot dogs cut side down as previously mentioned, and then flip the hot dog right side up, add the toppings, and stick the hot dogs back in the toaster to finish cooking with the toppings on top. This will yield beautifully melted cheese and warm toppings! Yum!

How to Broil Hot Dogs in the Toaster Oven

Broiling is another way to cook hot dogs in the toaster oven. As you might imagine, broiling your hot dogs will yield a crispier result, close to having it grilled. If this sounds like your thing, go ahead and follow the directions below for broiling your next hot dog in a toaster oven! 

Prepare

Just as before, you’ll want to gather all of your equipment to broil your hot dogs in the toaster oven. You’ll need the same equipment needed to toast your hot dogs in the toaster oven including foil, a baking tray, your hot dogs, tongs, plates, hot dog buns (if using), and anything you’d like to top your hot dogs with.

Pre-Slice

Pre-slice your hot dogs the same way you would when toasting your hot dogs regularly. The steps on how to do this are detailed in the above sections. 

Preheat

When preheating your toaster oven for broiling, you simply need to set your toaster oven to broiling temperature. Wait until your toaster oven is fully done preheating before adding your hot dogs to the toaster oven.

Prepare a Tray – But Differently This Time

Prepare a baking tray for your hot dogs, but this time, place your hot dogs directly on the tray and place the tray on the top rack so that your hot dogs will broil nicely. When assembling your hot dogs, ensure that they aren’t touching one another, as this could affect the browning process.

Also, if you wish for your hot dogs to stay juicy without drying out, you can wrap your hot dogs in additional foil before placing them on a foil-lined baking sheet; however, you may not get crispy results this way.

Start Broiling

Cook your hot dogs cut side down and broil for about 5 minutes. Then, flip your hot dog cut side up and add any toppings (if you wish), and continue broiling for about 5 more minutes.

Be sure to watch your hot dogs and toppings closely as it is very easy to burn food when the toaster oven is set to broil! 

Once finished, remove your hot dogs (very carefully) and allow them to cool.

Top Them How You Like Them! 

Top your hot dogs with whatever your heart desires. For awesome ideas on what to top your next broiled toaster oven hot dog with, check out the segment titled “Dress ‘Em Up” above! 

Cooking Hot Dogs in Toaster Oven Frozen

Remember that you should never place hot dogs in the toaster oven while they are still frozen. Be sure to thaw your hot dogs completely before placing them in the oven to avoid having a seemingly done exterior with a cold and unappetizing center.

When defrosting your hot dogs, be sure to do so in a way that is safe and healthy. One common way is to defrost hot dogs in the refrigerator, but you can also defrost them in cold water. To do this, you’ll simply fill your sink or a basin with cold water and allow the hot dogs to defrost in the water until they are completely thawed. When doing this method, be sure to change the water every 30 minutes. This lowers the chances of bacteria being multiplied during the defrosting process. 

how to cook hot dogs in a toaster oven_alice's kitchen

How to Store Toasted Hot Dogs

Once your hot dogs are toasted, you may find that you want to save a few for later. If you wish to do this, simply place your cooked hot dogs in an air-tight container or wrap them in plastic wrap or foil before placing them in the refrigerator. Cooked hot dogs typically stay good in the fridge for around three days provided that you stored them correctly. 

How to Reheat Toasted Hot Dogs

Since your hot dogs will have already been browned and crisp from being cooked in a toaster oven, you may wish to simply wrap your hot dogs in a damp paper towel and microwave them at 10-15 second intervals until they are warmed through. Other methods, such as reheating your hot dogs on the stove, toaster oven, or conventional oven may render the dogs too dry. 

If you don’t have a microwave on hand, consider sprinkling the hot dog with a little water, wrapping it in foil, and heating it in a conventional oven or toaster oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 5-10 minutes or until fully warmed through.  

Making Hot Dogs in the Toaster Oven Can Be Done!

To be certain, making hot dogs in the toaster oven can easily be done. It will, however, take a little preparation ahead of time to make your hot dogs juicy, crispy, and able to hold all the toppings you may want to load them up with. Nevertheless, using a toaster is a fast, easy, and convenient way to serve up great-tasting hot dogs in a flash. We hope this helps!