Recipe courtesy of Ali Clarke

New York–Style Hot Dogs

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 30 min
  • Active: 30 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
Nothing says summer like a hot dog! It’s one of those foods that kick-starts a season, and a NY-style dog is always my first choice. I have such great memories of living in New York City and having a hot dog at a baseball game, or for a late-night snack or just grabbing one from a cart while walking around the city. Once I moved to California I had to learn how to make the iconic sweet onions coated in tangy tomato sauce myself. Now the traditional New York–style hot dog can welcome me to summer every year.



  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. When the oil is hot, stir in the onions and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring every minute or so, until the onions have softened and begin to caramelize, about 8 minutes. 
  3. Stir in the tomato paste, stirring until the onions are completely coated. Cook until the tomato paste deepens in color, about 1 minute. Stir in the vinegar, scraping any browned bits off the bottom of the pan. Stir in 1 cup of water, the sugar and garlic powder. Raise the heat to medium and bring to a rapid simmer. Reduce the heat to low and gently simmer until the sauce reduces and thickens enough so a spoon leaves behind a trail, 10 to 12 minutes. Season with salt to taste.  
  4. While the onions simmer, place the hot dogs on a baking sheet and bake until heated through and they begin to brown on the bottoms, about 10 minutes, flipping once about halfway through the cooking time. If you like, open the hot dog buns and toast the buns alongside the dogs for the last 2 minutes of cooking.  
  5. Place the hot dogs in the buns and top with the onions. Serve immediately. 

Cook’s Note

The New York–style onions can be made up to 3 days in advance and refrigerated in an airtight container. Before serving, reheat the onions in the microwave or in a saucepan over low heat until warmed through. You can also cook the hot dogs on a grill. Preheat the grill to medium; place the dogs on the grill and cook, turning them every minute or two, until the hot dogs have dark grill marks and are heated through, 7 to 8 minutes.