Don’t ask for ketchup when you order one of the legendary dogs that come topped with a fistful of fries at this standing-room-only institution, which has been serving ’em up since 1946. The surly types behind the counter don’t go for weak stuff like that. Claim your place at the end of the perpetually long line and entertain yourself by watching potatoes being cut and fried into perfect greasy strips while you wait. Once it’s your turn, order your dog with everything, then count your blessings for the wax paper–wrapped bliss that lies before you.
The hot dog is in the pantheon of Chicago foods, right up there with pizza and Italian beef. And you probably don’t have to go very far to get a good one as there are esteemed hot dog vendors in all corners of the city. Whether you’re a purist who believes ketchup should be a banned condiment or a Michigander who prefers a Coney Island hot dog, the following places are sure to satisfy. Some have been around for a long time and are among the most iconic restaurants in Chicago, while others offer the best cheap eats. There’s even a local mini-chain of stands located inside Home Depot stores, as well as Korean-style corn dogs coated in unique toppings. So there’s no need to wait until your next barbecue or ballgame to enjoy a wiener, our guide to the best hot dog restaurants in Chicago will show you where to get one any time you desire.
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