Have you been missing corn dogs?? Looking for a tasty grain-free version? I am excited to report you have found it! They can even be frozen and reheated for later. In developing this recipe, I have eaten enough “corn” dogs over these past few days to last me a few years! 3 packs of hot dogs later, I have a finished product that would fool a corn dog connoisseur (if such a thing exist)!
I often get asked what brand of a certain ingredient that I use. A few recommendations: I use Organic Trader Joe’s Stevia due to the fact that it has no fillers in it and is the least bitter stevia brand that I have tried in the 9 years I have used it. Also, it is relatively inexpensive because its sweetness is so concentrated. I recommend THIS Almond Flour because they have a great product and the price is right, especially when they run 10-15% off sales (a few times a year). I also recommend THIS for Coconut flour, coconut oil and coconut chips for the same reasons, good quality but also a good price (especially when you can catch it on sale or get free shipping). As you can see, quality is important but price is always part of my equation when purchasing ingredients for recipes. Get the best that YOUR money can buy, not someone else’s. Can’t afford grass-fed beef in the grocery store (I can’t!)?? Consider going in with a few other families and purchasing your meat directly from the farmer. We have been doing this for the past couple of years and I love it!
Recommending a “Good” Hot Dog
So here are my thoughts on hot dogs. Hot dogs are essentially processed meat with spices. This is not a “whole food” item but something everyone loves to eat (I prefer burgers). Cured hot dogs contain nitrates. Sodium nitrates are used in different manufacturing processes such as in the making of explosives, fireworks and the preserving of meats. That is a large range of uses! I admit, I am not an expert on Nitrates but they are definitely something to investigate further and avoid. Nitrates do occur naturally in some food like celery juice. To be safe, choose foods that use celery juice (or other foods) as a preservative.
“Good” hot dogs should not include: wheat, soy, corn, flavorings, nitrates (unless naturally occurring) and other ingredients you can’t pronounce. Don’t let the packaging fool you, READ the ingredient list. I was shocked to read the ingredients in “Hebrew National” hot dogs, especially when looking at the packaging! Kosher or not, Don’t Eat them!!
Ingredients: Beef, Water. Contains Less Than 2% Of The Following: Sea Salt, Paprika, Dehydrated Onion, Spices, Nutmeg Oil, Celery Powder. Spices: Black Pepper, Coriander, Mace, Nutmeg
Take a look at the ingredients. They were also $2 cheaper a pack than Applegate’s and they taste great!
The only ingredient in these hot dogs I had to look up was the Lactic Acid Starter Culture. LASC can either be produced from dairy or corn and is primarily used to tenderize the meat. From researching this specific brand, the LASC is produced from corn so this could possibly be an allergy risk for some.
I know some people don’t have access to Whole Foods or Costco or choose not to shop at those places. Some may not be able to afford these products either and I understand. Local grocery stores also have some more affordable options. These are not perfect hot dogs (if perfect hot dogs even exist) but would be better than brands like “Nathan’s” and “Hebrew National” which contain lots of junk ingredients (so do the other hot dogs in the store but at least they don’t market themselves as being a healthy hot dog). Check out THIS link for a list of ingredient for most hot dog brands.
Oscar Mayer Selects can be found at Wal-Mart and most other grocers.
Here are ingredients:
BEEF, WATER, CULTURED DEXTROSE*, CONTAINS LESS THAN 2% OF DEXTROSE, SALT, CULTURED CELERY JUICE*, VINEGAR*, SODIUM PHOSPHATES, CHERRY POWDER, LEMON JUICE SOLIDS, FLAVOR, EXTRACTIVES OF PAPRIKA. *INGREDIENTS TO PRESERVE QUALITY.A few ingredients to question:
- Dextrose is a form of sugar.
- Sodium Phosphates is a salt used in food processing for texturizing, as an emulsifier, as a neutralizing agent or as an added nutrient.
- Flavor- ??? This term is a bit scary and pretty vague.
I admit, these may not be the best dog but if you choose these because that is all that is available, it won’t be the end of the world.Other suggestions:
Someone recommended Maverick Ranch Brand which I am told is sold at Publix.
Ingredients: Natural beef, water, seasoning (salt, dextrose, mustard, oleoresin paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, spice extractives, natural smoke flavor), vegetable juice powder (celery powder, sea salt), dextrose, lactic acid starter culture.
I researched the ingredients I wasn’t familiar with. Besides the dextrose and lactic acid starter culture, the only other ingredient:
- Natural smoke flavor- this is a grey area. It refers to the burning of various woods and “capturing” the smokey flavor. I do get scared when I see the term “natural” used, this is very vague.
Ingredients: Pork, Water, Sea Salt, Vinegar, Cane Sugar, Cultured Celery extract , Spice, Dehydrated Garlic, Smoke
These sound great!
Niman Ranch all beef hot dogs. I heard they are great but I couldn’t find a list of ingredients.
True story brand Organic grass-fed beef hotdogs. Again, I couldn’t find them when researching.
Coleman Natural (online says they are available at Costco) seem like a great brand as well.
Another option, ask your local butcher what are the ingredients in their hot dogs.
I admit, this is not a thorough study of hot dogs but hopefully it will give you a starting point and a few brands to look for and a few to avoid like the plague! (I only mentioned Hebrew National and Nathan’s because people think they are better choices and they are really just as bad as the rest.)
Do you know of a great brand of Hot Dog?? Please post in the comments sections and where you purchase them from!
Things you will need to make my Grain-Free “Corn” Dogs
- You are going to need oil for frying. I used this expeller pressed coconut oil. I purchase it by the gallon. It is heat stable to a higher temperature and it doesn’t taste like coconut oil in case you were wondering.
- You are either going to need a fryer (Fry Daddy) or pot. I actually used a small pot because I didn’t want to use a lot of oil. I fried one dog at a time but if using a bigger fryer, you could fry more.
- Your also going to need popsicle or craft sticks. I tried using skewers but because they are round, the hot dog would slide around and not stay in place. They are also pointed at the end so probably not good to hide them in food! I picked up a pack of 100 for about $2.
- Use a thermometer. The first day I did not and I ended up with burned oil that I had to throw out. I used a candy thermometer ($3) on the side of the pot (I placed it there before I heated the oil). You want to keep the temperature between 350-375 degrees F. If the oil is not hot enough, the batter will absorb the oil and become greasy. If it is too hot, your oil will burn. Bring oil to temperature on medium heat and as the temperature approaches 350, go ahead and turn down just a little. You will have to adjust the heat the while cooking to make sure the temperature doesn’t drop too much or get too hot.
- A good hot dog (see above for more details). I first tried to do a regular size corn dog but because I didn’t want to use a big pot which meant a lot of oil, I decided to do mini ones. Cutting the hot dog in half worked great and also there is less waste if kids decide after a few bites they are “full.” Again, it’s about $$!
- A small bowl but with high sides for mixing the batter. This allows you to coat the hot dog in the batter by “twirling” it around.
- Or you could use this AWESOME Corn Dog Maker!!
I will be making these “Corn” dogs for my son’s birthday next weekend! I will probably make them ahead and just reheat in the oven just before it is time to eat.
Makes 6; 2 Net Carbs each
In a medium sauce pan (or fryer), add oil and begin to bring to the temperature of 350 degrees F over medium heat. Use thermometer. Prepare tray with paper towels for when corn dogs come out of fryer.
In a small to medium-sized bowl, combine almond flour, baking powder and salt with whisk. Add eggs and whisk. Let set for 3-4 minutes and then stir again. Dry off any excess moisture on the outside of the hot dog with a paper towel. This will help the batter stick. Place popsicle stick through cut side of hot dog.
Once oil is almost to temperature, dip skewered hot dog into batter and roll around until all sides are coated. This may take a few attempts. Once oil reaches 350 degrees F, carefully place battered hot dog into oil and allow to cook for 30 seconds. Then using tongs, flip corn dog to cook on other side for 45-60 seconds or until golden brown. You may have to hold corn dog by the thick using the tongs to cook other side. Remove corn dog by the popsicle stick and allow to cool on paper towels (or brown bag).
**Freeze individually and then reheat in oven at 400 degrees for 20 minutes (if frozen).
By clicking on any links in my blog, you are helping me continue doing what I LOVE to do! Also, when purchasing items from Amazon, consider clicking on THIS affiliate link. Anything you purchase within 24 hours after clicking on THIS link, I will receive a small commission as well. This commission helps compensate me for my time, and justifies the hours a day that I spend in the kitchen creating recipes, on the computer posting blogs, and sharing helpful information with you. Thanks again for all of your support, it is greatly appreciated! More great recipes to come!