Best cheap hot dogs in New York City

Skip the dollar hot-dog carts and sample our picks for the best cheap hot dogs in NYC.

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When a hot dog craving strikes, it may be tempting to grab a dollar dog from one if the city's dirty-water carts. Instead, chow down on one of our picks for the city's best cheap hot dogs, including both all-beef classics and nouveau franks.

  • Photograph: Beth Levendis

    Pretzel Dog at Sigmund's Pretzelshop

    The folks at this Alphabet City storefront leave their franks in trusted hands—UES butchers Schaller & Weber—and focus instead on their own strengths, crafting a beautifully doughy, yeasty pretzel bun to complement the extra-juicy dog. House-made spiced sauerkraut and a blend of whole-grain, Dijon and yellow mustards complete the tidy package. 29 Ave B between 2nd and 3rd Sts (646-410-0333). $3.

  • Photograph: Beth Levendis

    Vinh at Asiadog

    This flea-market star opened its first brick-and-mortar shop in 2011, hawking Asian-inflected franks. The most successful of the bunch is the Vinh, which gives a Schaller & Weber wiener the banh mi treatment: The bun is smeared with pâté on one side and sriracha aioli on the other, then topped with a flurry of cucumber, pickled carrot and daikon, diced jalapeños and cilantro. 66 Kenmare St between Mott and Mulberry Sts (212-226-8861). $4.50, two for $8.

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Classic at Bark Hot Dogs

    Brandon Gillis and Josh Sharkey are trailblazers in the artisanal-wiener boom, and their simple Classic is the best showcase of their secret weapon: a snappy beef-and-pork dog made in Rochester, New York. Griddled, basted in smoked lard butter and nestled into a Pepperidge Farm bun, it doesn't need any extra flourishes to shine. 474 Bergen St at Flatbush Ave, Park Slope, Brooklyn (718-789-1939). $4.25.

  • Photograph: Caroline Voagen Nelson

    Van Dog at PDT

    Phillip Kirschen-Clark (Vandaag) is the latest boldfaced-name toque to make his mark on this cocktail den's haute-dog menu. His Scandinavian-inflected creation is built around an all-beef wiener that's been pickled in apple cider vinegar. The tangy frank is balanced by coriander-scented sauerkraut, mustard greens and piccalilli (an English-style relish). 113 St. Marks Pl between First Ave and Ave A (212-614-0386). $6.

  • Photograph: Beth Levendis

    Hoyt Dog at Mile End

    This nouveau Jewish deli is best known for bringing Montreal-style smoked meat to the city, but it also makes its mark on a New York classic with its from-scratch hot dog. Each component is made in-house, from the griddled all-beef frank to the tangy sauerkraut and thick, poppy-seed–studded bun. Weekday lunchers can get the dog solo; at night, it's offered as a combo with a side of baked beans generously mixed with smoked meat. 97A Hoyt St between Atlantic Ave and Pacific St, Boerum Hill, Brooklyn (718-852-7510). Hot dog $7, combo $12.

  • Photograph: Beth Levendis

    Black Angus Dog with Pulled Pork at The Smoke Joint

    The all-Angus hot dog at this Brooklyn barbecue house is deep-fried, grilled and stuffed into a toasted bun slicked with drawn butter. Swine-lovers can take it to the next level with a topping of pulled pork butt that's been smoked for 12 hours over maple and hickory. 87 South Elliott Pl between Fulton St and Lafayette Ave, Fort Greene, Brooklyn (718-797-1011). $5.

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Original Hot Dog at Nathan's Famous

    Tourists and tube-steak zealots make the trek to this Brooklyn landmark for a taste of hot-dog history. Established in 1916, the former 5¢ stand still does a roaring trade. The bun is flimsy, but in the end, it's just a vehicle for the chain-spawning wiener, which has a tight casing that gives way to a juicy interior. 1310 Surf Ave at Stillwell Ave, Coney Island, Brooklyn (718-946-2202). $3.80.

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

    Recession Special at Gray's Papaya

    Since 1982, this two-dog deal has served as the city's unofficial economic barometer, fluctuating in price through booms and busts. Currently pegged at $4.95, it's still a steal for the satisfying combo of two all-beef griddled dogs and buns—topped to your liking with gratis condiments like spicy mustard and paprika-flavored sweet onion sauce—and a 14-ounce drink. Choose from Gray's iconic tropical quaffs, like papaya juice or a virgin banana daiquiri. 402 Sixth Ave at 8th St (212-260-3532). $4.95.

  • Photograph: Caroline Voagen Nelson

    Spicy Redneck at Crif Dogs

    The stoner-friendly offerings at Crif Dogs include this perennial top seller, featuring a bacon-wrapped dog, chili, coleslaw and pickled jalapeños. The crunch of deep-fried bacon gives way to a soft interior, and the mild chili sauce soaks into the bun, giving each bite an extra hit of meaty flavor. 555 Driggs Ave at North 7th St, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718-302-3200). $4.75.

  • Photograph: Krista Schlueter

    Hot Dog at Dominick's Hot Dog Truck

    Since 1959, Queens lunchers have been lining up for the old-school franks at this food truck outside St. John Cemetery. Get the boiled natural-casing Sabrett on a steamed bun with homemade spiced and sauted onions or punchy sauerkraut, and wash it down with a soda, in flavors like black cherry and cream, from 140-year-old White Rock. Woodhaven Blvd between 65th Dr and 65th Rd, Rego Park, Queens (no phone). $2.75.

  • Photograph: Lindsay Maclean Taylor

    Perro Mexicano at La Perrada de Chalo

    This Colombian joint turns out  Latin American--style hot dogs (with outr toppings like diced pineapple). Our favorite is the zesty Mexican, loaded with salsa verde, melted cheese, crushed potato chips and squiggles of ketchup, mustard and spicy mayo. 83-12 Northern Blvd between 83rd and 84th Sts, Jackson Heights, Queens (718-360-0977). Regular $3.35, super $4.25.

  • Photograph: Jakob N. Layman

    Shack-cago Dog at Shake Shack

    Danny Meyer's fast-food joint brings Gothamites a taste of the Midwest with this Chicago-style snack. The Vienna beef dog is split and griddled on a flattop, then nestled in a pillowy potato bun. It comes fully loaded with toppings, such as pickled green sport peppers and relish from Lower East Side pickle-maker Rick's Picks. Various locations; visit shakeshack.com. $4.

  • Photograph: Caroline Voagen Nelson

    Meat Hook Hot Dog at Smorgasburg

    Williamburg's meat-cleaving all-stars fire up the grill on Saturdays to serve their superbly spiced beef-and-pork frankfurters, sheathed in lamb casing. You can add homemade coleslaw for an extra buck, but we think the plump sausages are best with nothing more than a warmed potato bun and a dash of hot sauce. 27 North 6th St between Kent Ave and the East River, Williamsbsurg, Brooklyn (718-349-5033). Saturdays only. $5.

  • Photograph: Beth Levendis

    Vegan Hot Dog at Westville

    Vegans in the know get their soybean dogs at Westville, where the grilled faux franks pack a serious hit of smoke and spice. Order a single, or ante up for the special: two dogs with thick-cut pickle chips, fries, salad or one of the eatery's seasonally driven sides, like sauted kale with shallots. 173 Ave A at 11th St (212-677-2033) * 210 W 10th St at Bleecker St (212-741-7971) * Single $3.50, special $10.

  • Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

    Coney Dogs at The Whiskey Brooklyn

    There's nothing artisanal about these sloppy Coney dogs, smothered in mustard, pork-and-beef chili, sweet onions and nacho cheese sauce. Available nightly until 2am, they're the type of junky indulgence that's best enjoyed with a few jars already sloshing in your belly. 44 Berry St at North 11th St, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718-387-8444). Two for $7.

Photograph: Beth Levendis

Pretzel Dog at Sigmund's Pretzelshop

The folks at this Alphabet City storefront leave their franks in trusted hands—UES butchers Schaller & Weber—and focus instead on their own strengths, crafting a beautifully doughy, yeasty pretzel bun to complement the extra-juicy dog. House-made spiced sauerkraut and a blend of whole-grain, Dijon and yellow mustards complete the tidy package. 29 Ave B between 2nd and 3rd Sts (646-410-0333). $3.

Users say

4 comments
Dan
Dan

This review is too biased. "Dirty-water carts?" I bet it's cleaner than most restaurants you go to eat at. Someone probably paid this person to write it.

Dan
Dan

This review is too biased. "Dirty-water carts?" I bet it's cleaner than most restaurants you go to eat at. Someone probably paid this person to write it.

Joe
Joe

How out of touch with reality are you? These hot dogs are not cheap.

Don
Don

Mile End dog....cheap? so now $7 hotdogs are cheap?