Chicago hot dogs: Where to find the city's signature sausage

The best restaurants to order your 7-ingredient Chicago hot dog.

Hot dog, wiener, frank, red hot, encased meat bestowed by the gods...whatever you call it, chances are you're going to gobble this all-American artery-clogger at least once during the Fourth of July weekend. If you're going for an authentic Chicago dog, it must have seven specific ingredients-no more, no less-or it ain't no hometown wiener. And for the love of God, don't order your frank with ketchup, lest you incur the wrath of anti-red sauce activists. We Chicagoans love our favorite stands almost as much as the dogs themselves, and sometimes we're willing to go to great lengths (or at least put up with lines of unbearable length) to get our hands on perfection in a bun. Here's how to find 'em:

The 7 toppings of the Chicago hot dog

How the Chicago hot dog came to host a lucky number of pile-ons.

U Lucky Dawg

The home of the first Chicago-style dog has held on to its tried-and-true taste.

Jim's Original

Jim's Original accepts no imitations.

Gold Coast Dogs

X marks the spot at Gold Coast Dogs.

Gene & Jude

At Gene & Jude's there's no eye-candy, no seating and no time for chitchat.

Susie's Drive-Thru

At Susie's Drive Thru, you might get more wiener than you bargained for.

The Hot Doug's line

One very hungover man puts up with an agonizingly long Saturday wait to get his hands on Hot Doug's duck-fat fries and a frank.

What's in a Vienna Beef hot dog?

Stripped down to its bare elements, a hot dog's ingredients aren't exactly the stuff of horror flicks.

Putting ketchup on a Chicago hot dog

We put Chicagoans' legendary antipathy toward ketchup to the test.

The best unique hot dogs in Chicago

We hand out awards for dogs that rank as the cheapest, tiniest, longest and more.

Ketchup confessions from Chicago hot dog lovers

Two diametrically opposed hot-dog lovers bare their souls on the controversial condiment.