How to make NYC pushcart-style hot dogs at home

NYC style hot dog

Your classic “dirty water dog” purchased from a Sabrett’s pushcart in Liberty Plaza in lower Manhattan

I bought the above hot dog from a Sabrett’s cart in New York City last week. It was a good value at $2 but otherwise unremarkable except for one element. You could totally replicate the bun, the dog itself, the mustard and the jarred or canned sauerkraut at home. The onions in red sauce… not so much. Unless you follow this recipe.


New York style onion-and-tomato hot dog relish

The sauce is a unique combination of sweet/sour and funky, and the fact that most people who have bought the official product on Amazon for $10 a pint jar complain about the taste suggests it’s authentic. But my recipe is just as good and you can make enough for dozens of hot dogs (maybe for your own pop-up pushcart in your neighborhood?) for a pittance. All you need is buns and dogs from the supermarket, your preferred condiments (ketchup is on the Sabrett’s cart but they don’t put it on without asking, thankfully) and this:

Recipe for NYC hot dog sauce

I dislike the #TBT or “Throwback Thursday” conceit on Facebook where people repost what they did five years ago. If it wasn’t interesting then, it’s not interesting today. But it gave me an idea. My own TBT posts will showcase recipes that, for one reason or another (maybe because I was a lazy yutz and didn’t provide a lot of commentary) never got the attention they deserved. The recent corned beef post for St. Patrick’s Day was in retrospect the first of these.

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2 Responses to How to make NYC pushcart-style hot dogs at home

  1. shesrachael says:

    NYC pushcart style hotdogs take me back to my childhood. Nothing beats them, though those soft salty jumbo pretzels come in a very close second!


  2. Pretzels, agree. With mustard, right?


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