Franks, footlongs, red hots, weenies, or simply hot dogs – whatever you call these tasty treats, Pennsylvania’s strong German roots make us one of the hottest spots to find them. In fact, one PA town has gone as far as deeming themselves the hot dog capital of the world!
After exploring these 27 stands, spots, and shops in the dog days of summer, you’ll be expert enough to settle the age-old internet debate: is a hot dog a sandwich?
Allentown, Fogelsville and Trexlertown
If you’re in search of the best secret sauce for a hot dog, your first stop should be one of Yocco’s four locations in the Lehigh Valley. For 100 years, Yocco’s has served as a community landmark, helping to propel the hot dog to a celebrity status among residents and visitors. What makes Yocco’s an iconic dog – is it the freshly chopped onions, the tangy mustard, the secret sauce, or the steamed bun? It’s time for you to have a taste and decide for yourself!
2. Iron River Grille
A newer spot to the Allegheny region, Iron River Grille at the Lewistown Country Club provides guests dinner with a beautiful view of the Juniata River. Three delicious dogs can be found on the menu, and golf enthusiasts will feel transported to the Master’s Tournament with the pimento dog. Doused in melted pimento cheese and layered with diced red onions, it’s a uniquely themed take on the classic dog.
3. The Hot Dog Stand
The Hot Dog Stand is a Delaware County staple offering outdoor seating and ice-cold drinks that perfectly pair with your dog and fries. Order the Classic with chili and cheese or opt for a more adventurous option such as the Texas Tommy, a grilled dog topped with crispy bacon and melted cheese.
4. M+P Coney Island
In the town self-proclaimed as the “Hot Dog Capital of the World,” M+P Coney Island has been in the heart of it all since 1923. Founded by teenage immigrants from Greece, this Greek-style hot dog establishment has remained family owned for nearly 100 years! Visitors will experience why this spot is so popular once they get a taste of their secret chili sauce recipe.
5. Abe’s Hot Dogs
Get as hungry as possible before heading into Luzerne County for a hot dog duel starting at Abe’s Hog Dogs in Wilkes Barre. Abe’s has a classic diner vibe and serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner – but, of course, you’ll want to grab a hot dog so you can taste Abe’s sauce along with your choice of toppings. You’ll be tempted by their choice of sides, but try to save some space...
...Because just across the parking lot is hot dog competitor Ferris’s Lunch! As a classic hot dog joint, Ferris’s pride is in its classic dogs topped with a chili sauce and a heap of toppings. Your mouth will be watering even before you enter when you see the dogs being cooked fresh in the front window. Once you’ve had a taste, you can finally decide which hot dog hotspot takes the crown for top dog!
7.Torony's Giant Hot Dog Stand
Since 1952, the Torony family has been serving some of the best hot dogs, fresh-cut french fries, and a special chili sauce sure to cure your cravings. Torony's Giant Hot Dog Stand began as a seasonal outdoor corner roadside stand that has since grown to an indoor location where folks can sit by the counter and munch away on a footlong topped with mustard, onions, and homemade chili.
8. Ranch Wagon
No short, skimpy dogs served here! The Ranch Wagon restaurant, located in the heart of the Back Mountain, is home to the famous Long Dog. Established in 1955 as a simple hot dog stand, they have made a name for themselves as the perfect spot to get some delicious homemade hot dogs! Their car side servers will assist you, so you can enjoy a hot fresh meal without leaving your car.
9. The Sub Hub
Hot dogs are sandwiches too, right? The Sub Hub sandwich shop, voted “Best Sandwich” in 2021 by Best of Tri-County, makes the biggest hot dog in Pennsylvania’s great outdoors. The Mega Dog consists of two grilled footlongs coated with The Sub Hub’s homemade sauce, a choice of cheese, and veggies on a fresh sub bun. Come hungry so you can devour this fantastic footlong.
10. Jimmy John's Pipin' Hot Sandwiches
Featured on the Food Network's “Best Of: Roadside Stands," Jimmy John’s Pipin’ Hot Sandwiches has been cooking up fast food favorites for more than 70 years and is a go-to roadside stop for hungry travelers seeking a savory snack. Their Special Frankfurter comes with a variety of topping selections including chili, cheese, and bacon fresh from the grill!
Serving up delicious dogs since 1945, The Squeeze-In holds national renown. With just five bar counter seats, this must-visit destination is famous for its tiny size and has even been listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as one of the smallest restaurants in the country. Though this spot is small, make sure to come with a big appetite so you can try all of the delicious dogs.
12. Harry’s Hot Dogs
Family-owned and operated since 1973, Harry’s Hot Dogs serves an abundance of offerings, but you must try Harry’s famous hot dog. Topped with a special meat sauce, mustard, and chopped onions, this delectable dog is best complemented with a side of loaded fries. Choose from cheese, Texas barbecue, crab, Old Bay, and other crazy creations.
13. Greer’s Burger Garage
With the slogan, “Where old school meets new school,” Greer’s Burger Garage makes some of the best smash burgers and piled-high hot dogs in the region. With their juicy Sabrett hot dogs nestled in a fresh New England style roll, all that’s needed is a pile of toppings to make this a must-try experience. Try one of their unique dogs, such as the Dutch Doggo with Dijon mustard and Dutch sauerkraut or the Seattle Sounder with jalapeno cream cheese, sauteed peppers, and onions. Add sriracha for an extra kick!
14. Pittsburgh Street Dogs
Steel City’s newest dog destination, Pittsburgh Street Dogs, has already made a name for itself in the hot dog market. This quaint shop combines its old school look with an outdoor seating area where guests can enjoy their meal. Try a dog from their rotating specialty hot dog menu or go with a classic with ketchup and mustard – and don’t forget to add in a side of fries or chips.
15. Brighton Hot Dog Shoppe
With a tradition dating back to 1959, the Brighton Hot Dog Shoppe prides itself on fresh and quality products. Cut daily from fresh potatoes, their french and home fries pair perfectly with a Brighton dog layered in special sauce and topped with your favorite add-ons. Summertime is the perfect time to wash your dog down with one of their mouthwatering milkshakes.
16. Wiener World
Behold the home of the famous cheese dog: Wiener World! Since 1965, Wiener World has served downtown Pittsburgh with their vintage hot dog stand, counter service hotspot. If cheese isn’t your thing, the possibilities are endless with their Market St. Deli Co. wieners, sandwiches, grilled specialties, and ice cream.
17. Packs & Dogs
Packs & Dogs puts the dog in hot dog! Known for its unique menu item names, there is the German Shepherd with sauerkraut and spicy brown mustard; the Irish Setter with coleslaw and fries; and the Blood Hound with bacon, cheddar cheese, onion, and barbecue sauce. If none of these combinations interest you, choose the Mutt to customize a dog with any toppings of your choice.
18. Back to the Foodture
Take a trip to the past with Back to the Foodture‘s pop culture-inspired hot dogs. Experience the Snoop Dog, a bacon-wrapped dog covered in 24K sauce and cheese; the Griffin, which is topped with crispy onions and Carolina sauce; or the Scooby Dog, which boasts cheese and gravy. Pair your dog with a regular basket of fries or try one of their funky french fry flavors.
19. Frankie’s Extra Long
A staple of Butler Street, Frankie’s Extra Long has stood as a top hot dog joint for years now. Frankie’s is known for their famous, customizable footlong hot dog. Load up your footlong with toppings such as chili, nacho cheese, or sauerkraut.
20. Lock & Dam
Come and “relish” the good times at Lock & Dam, a family-owned hot dog shop overlooking the Allegheny River. Offering a variety of customizable dam dogs and burgers, enjoy these tasty menu items along with a milkshake or float that will be sure to leave you satisfied. With a variety of customizations, you’ll want to come back to try new combinations of flavors on your hot dog every time.
21. Ernie’s Texas Lunch
For 101 years, Ernie’s Texas Lunch has been home to the locally well-known Texas Weiner – a hot dog topped with mustard, chopped onions, and a signature chili sauce recipe that’ll leave you wanting more. This iconic diner serves a variety of dogs, such as their taco dog and cheese dog plus other signature diner classics.
22. Hunt’s Battlefield Fries & Café
Prepare for a battle of history and flavor at Hunt’s Battlefield Fries & Café. Home to delicious hamburgers and cheesesteaks, their hot dogs are just as good. Grab a dog topped with cheese, sauerkraut, or chili before exploring downtown Gettysburg.
23. Sara’s Diner
Located at the gateway of Presque Isle State Park, Sara’s Diner is a must-stop for hot diggity dogs. Their famous foot-long dogs come from Smith’s, a local Erie brand, making them as fresh as can be. Order your dog smothered in cheese or chili sauce for the perfect bite.
24. Eddie’s Footlong Hot Dogs
Run as a family-owned business since 1947, Eddie’s Footlong Hot Dogs is celebrating 75 years! Help this hot dog stand celebrate with a loaded footlong with friends and family. Top yours with one of their suggested combinations such as the Joe, or go Classic with cheese, mustard, ketchup, onion, or kraut. Make it a meal and wash your dog down with a refreshing fountain soda and choose between fries or onion rings.
25. Texas Hot Lunch
Texas Hot Lunch is a family business serving up hot and historic dogs. This American and Greek style restaurant has been serving up the Texas hot dog, which features a plump, juicy hot dog loaded with mustard, onions, and a special sauce since 1914. Enjoy your hot lunch in their 4-Sons Dining Room.
26. Little Sisters Big Rig
Spring, summer, and fall, you will find Little Sisters Big Rig mobile kitchen at Kinzua Bridge State Park for a tasty treat. Grab a normal all beef hot dog or a chili cheese dog – and both come with fries to make for the perfect pair. Take a break from exploring the park at this savory stop!
27. The Burgerly
Don’t let the name fool you! Along with their famous burgers, locals know The Burgerly serves up some of the most delicious hot dogs in town. More adventurous diners will love the Dam Dog, a traditional all-beef hot dog with a major twist of pulled barbecue brisket, chili, pickled cabbage, and spicy mayo. We know what you’ll be saying once you’re done devouring this dog!
To learn about PA’s food scene, check out the visitPA website. Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for more PA inspiration. Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly Happy Thoughts e-newsletter so you never miss an update.