It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with all the hot dog choices at Walmart. They offer these summer favorites from nationally recognized labels, budget brands, and even organic producers.
But when the cookout is just around the corner, you’ve got to make a choice quickly. Walmart is our favorite place to pick up picnic essentials, and hot dogs are always a must-have.
Today, we’re biting into Wally World’s weenie selection to pick which ones are top dogs.
Let’s dig in!
What Is Walmart?
When Sam Walton opened the first Walmart in Bentonville, Arkansas, it looked nothing like the store we know today. From the humble Walton’s Five and Dime to the mega-retailer we know today, Walmart is everywhere.
The largest retailer in the world went from a podunk in Arkansas to every town in America. Department store goods, grocery items, and even tires make the superstore a one-stop for anything you need.
When picnic season strikes, the only thing you won’t find in the grocery aisles is the picnic tables. Those are in the home and garden section.
What Exactly Are Hot Dogs?
Hot dogs. Wieners. Frankfurters. Mystery meat. You probably grew up eating hot dogs with questionable ingredients. Popular mythology suggests that hot dogs contain less desirable cuts of meat. Some even suggest that they aren’t meat at all but some kind of pink slime.
Times have changed. USDA guidelines state that hot dogs are cooked sausage and must contain 60% meat and 40% fat and water. Manufacturers must note on the package what kinds of meat they include. Beef, pork, and poultry are allowed, and sometimes even all three.
Modern technology has given us “mechanically separated” meat products. That’s the pink slime. As unappetizing as the YouTube videos make it look, it’s considered food by the USDA.
Pro Tip: Looking for a new hot dog recipe? Find out how to make a Sonoran Hot Dog.
7 Hot Dogs Worth Buying at Walmart
We all have our favorite brands from childhood. Like it or not, they might be lower quality than you’d prefer today. Check out these brands for some of the best hot dogs your grill will ever meet.
#1 Nathan’s Famous Beef Franks
The world’s most recognizable brand of hot dogs, Nathan’s Famous is a 100% beef frank with history. From a nickel hot dog stand in 1916 to a world-famous Fourth of July hot dog eating contest, you can’t deny their popularity.
Nathan Handwerker’s recipe won over hot dog lovers by using his wife’s secret spice blend. The original Coney Island restaurant still stands, and fans come from all over just to say they’ve eaten at Nathan’s Famous Hot Dogs.
These are our favorite Walmart hot dogs by a long shot. No fillers, no mystery meat, just 100% beef every time.
#2 Hebrew National Beef Franks
Eastern European Jews fleeing Russian pogroms brought their food traditions with them. In the 1880s, Theodore Krainiun fled to the Lower East Side of Manhattan with his family, and he brought his famous sausage recipe with him. By 1905, the Hebrew National Kosher Sausage Company provided a reliable, healthy protein source to New York Jews.
In the early twentieth century, high-quality food wasn’t a priority, especially in processed meats. Kosher methods preserved the quality of Hebrew National franks when others explored less wholesome processing. Still made under kosher standards, these dogs are still one of the best.
These weenies are also a great price, so feeding your crew won’t break the bank.
#3 Oscar Mayer Classic Beef Uncured Franks Hot Dogs
Oscar Mayer is easily one of the world’s most recognized meat product brands. When the Weiner Mobile comes to town, the child in all of us comes out. These all-beef franks have something special going on.
Folks use lots of different terms to describe hot dogs. Most cures use nitrates from artificial salts, but Oscar Mayer uses celery juice instead. And it’s not just about the taste. Artificial preservatives cause all kinds of health problems.
These 100% beef hot dogs come fully cooked. Even though they aren’t as high-quality as our two top picks, they’re as American as baseball.
#4 Bar-S Classic Jumbo Franks Hot Dogs
Jumping over to the west coast for Bar-S, this Seattle-born brand focuses on creating quality products at bargain prices. Now based in Oklahoma, these dogs are more of a commodity brand than the heritage, all-beef franks. Made from all the parts you don’t want to know about, Bar-S includes mechanically separated chicken in their mix.
Founded in Seattle in 1981, the brand is famous for its “western-style” dogs. They’ve allied themselves with the no-frills, country style they’re known for.
Classic Jumbo Franks are mostly chicken with beef and pork added for flavor. Walmart has these hot dogs priced for when the in-laws are in town, so you’ll want these for summer hangs.
#5 Oscar Mayer Natural Selects Angus Beef Franks Hot Dogs
Since Oscar Mayer opened up shop in 1883, this iconic brand has made a little something for everyone. As part of the push towards healthier meat production, the brand is known for its quality and fun. Made with 100% beef and no artificial fillers, the Natural Selects line is a guilt-free summer pleasure.
Using celery juice for a cure, these all-natural wieners are worth the extra cost. You’ll love these cooked on a grill. And for those interested in regional flavors, they go perfectly with sauerkraut.
#6 JENNIE-O Jumbo Naturally Hardwood Smoked Turkey Franks
These turkey dogs are perfect if you’re trying to avoid red meat altogether. Jennie-O, founded in 1940, produces a wide range of turkey-based products. Their franks may look all-natural, but the hardwood smoke is the only part that fits the bill.
Made from mechanically separated turkey and sodium nitrate, they’re not quite as natural as they sound. But for folks trying to go for a low-fat, high-protein option, they’ll do.
JENNIE-O franks are also affordable. If you’re feeling the pinch, grab these hot dogs at your nearest Walmart and enjoy a worry-free grill out.
#7 Oscar Mayer Turkey Uncured Franks Hot Dogs
Oscar Mayer comes in with a winner here. Turkey hot dogs are made without nitrates or mechanically separated products. These classic turkey franks are the perfect compliment to the quality beef wieners that made the brand famous.
Cured with celery juice instead of chemicals, these dogs are a healthier option. They contain less fat than other products and don’t sacrifice flavor.
They’re on the more expensive side, but we think they’re worth it. Peace of mind never tasted so good.
Pro Tip: Add some spice to your hot dog. Find out What is a Michigan Red Hot?
Are Walmart Hot Dogs Worth It?
Hot dogs are the perfect candidate when you’re looking for a quick, easy meal. Pre-cooked, you can even microwave them in a pinch. They’re excellent any time of the year, but summer is the perfect season to break out the grill. We also love them cooked over a bonfire!
Walmart’s hot dog selection is top-notch, with something for every budget and taste. They’ve covered the market, from high-quality all-beef and turkey dogs to commodity brands.
And if you’re like most Americans who enjoy hot dogs with baseball, let’s hope the frank isn’t the best part of the game.
Discover the Best Free Camping Across the USA
To be honest with you, we hate paying for camping. There are so many free campsites in America (with complete privacy).
You should give it a try!
As a matter of fact, these free campsites are yours. Every time you pay federal taxes, you’re contributing to these lands.
Become a FREE CAMPING INSIDER and join the 100,000 campers who love to score the best site!
We’ll send you the 50 Best Free Campsites in the USA (one per state). Access the list by submitting your email below: