Can you air fry hot dogs? Yes, and you'll get a crisp outside with a juicy interior

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Can you air fry hot dogs? Yes, and you'll get a crisp outside with a juicy interior
It only takes a few minutes to air fry a hot dog and you can cook more than one at a time if needed.Claudia Totir/Getty Images
  • Air-frying hot dogs typically takes less than five minutes, making it faster than grilling or boiling.
  • The air fryer circulates hot air around the hot dog, resulting in a crisp outside and juicy inside.
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There are a number of options for cooking hot dogs, from boiling to grilling to broiling. But the best air fryer can offer no prep work and a quick cooking method. "By cooking them in the air fryer, you end up with a delicious and perfectly cooked hot dog," says Laurie Fleming, author of "The Essential Air Fryer Cookbook for Beginners" and the blog Fork to Spoon.

Fleming points out that the air fryer also offers minimal clean-up. No need to wash a big pot or scrub the grill grates; just give the air fryer basket a quick wash once the device cools down. Most importantly: "The flavor is truly elevated," says Fleming. "The reason is that the hot air circulating [around] the hot dog cooks it perfectly, and it's so much better than grilling." The air fryer produces hot dogs with a crispy exterior and a tender, juicy interior.

Best air fryer

Can you air fry hot dogs? Yes, and you'll get a crisp outside with a juicy interior
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We tested over 40 models to find the best air fryer. Check out our favorites:

  • Best overall: Instant Vortex Plus Air Fryer Oven - See at Amazon
  • Best value: Beautiful Touchscreen Air Fryer - See at Walmart
  • Best toaster oven: Oster Digital Air Fryer Oven with RapidCrisp - See at Amazon

How to make hot dogs in an air fryer

Can you air fry hot dogs? Yes, and you'll get a crisp outside with a juicy interior
The air fryer circulates air during the cooking process, keeping the hot dog juicy and crisp.CASEZY/Getty Images

The air fryer is one of the easiest methods for cooking a hot dog. While some recipes call for piercing or cutting slits into the hot dog before cooking, Fleming prefers to leave her hot dogs whole so they remain extra juicy. If you're concerned with bubbles popping up, she recommends making a few small, shallow slits in the hot dog before cooking.

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  1. Preheat the air fryer. If you have a few minutes to spare, preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees Fahrenheit according to the manual. This step is optional, so you can skip preheating if you're short on time.
  2. Add the hot dogs. Place the hot dogs in the air fryer basket in a single layer. You can cook just one or several at once, as long as they will fit in a single layer in the air fryer with space between each one for the hot air to circulate.
  3. Set the temperature and time and begin cooking. Program the air fryer to cook at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for four minutes.
  4. Add the bun. Once the four minutes are up, Fleming likes to place the cooked hot dog into a bun and put it back into the air fryer for two minutes. "This way you end up with a juicy hot dog inside a crispy bun," says Fleming.
  5. Add toppings and serve. If you like a cheesy dog, you can add the cheese and air fry for another 30 seconds to a minute, until melted.

Variations for air-fried hot dogs

Can you air fry hot dogs? Yes, and you'll get a crisp outside with a juicy interior
Try different variations like bacon-wrapped hot dogs or chili cheese dogs to add more flavor.bhofack2/Getty Images

From creative toppings to pigs in a blanket, there are plenty of fun ways to serve air fryer hot dogs.

  • Bacon-wrapped hot dogs: When Fleming wants to take hot dogs up a notch, she adds bacon. Before air frying, wrap the hot dog in bacon, securing each end with a toothpick. Air fry at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 8 to 10 minutes, or until crispy and warmed through. Use classic toppings like ketchup and mustard or top with Tex-Mex-inspired toppings like guacamole, sour cream, pickled onions, and hot sauce.
  • Chili cheese dogs: For a classic chili cheese dog, air fry the hot dog using the instructions above (four minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit). Add it to a bun and top with chili followed by shredded cheese. Place back in the air fryer and cook at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for three to five minutes, or until the cheese is completely melted.
  • Pigs in a Blanket: You can also use the air fryer to make pastry-wrapped hot dogs, also known as pigs in a blanket. Fleming likes to use cocktail wieners for appetizer-sized pigs in a blanket, but regular hot dogs can be used as well. If you're using standard hot dogs, cut them into thirds. Use sections of canned crescent roll dough to wrap cocktail wieners or the pieces of hot dog. Air fry at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for five to eight minutes, depending on the size of the hot dog, until the pastry is puffed and browned.

Insider's takeaway

For a juicy hot dog with a crispy exterior, use the air fryer. They take just minutes to cook and leave minimal clean-up. Add the hot dog bun at the end of air frying to crisp it up, or get creative and make pigs in a blanket, chili cheese dogs, or bacon-wrapped hot dogs.

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