Hot Dog Chili Recipe

This Hot Dog Chili Recipe is perfect on top of hot dogs and so much more! This simple beef chili is delicious on hamburgers, french fries and nachos too!

We love this chili recipe for spooning over hot dogs, baked potatoes, french fries, even burgers! Also be sure and try our EVERYDAY CHILI RECIPE that’s super kid friendly!

Hot Dog Chili Recipe with hot dogs stacked on a platter

Why We Love This Chili Recipe

First of all, we love chili. Chili recipes in all forms work for us. But when you’re looking for a basic, bean-free chili recipe this is the one you need.

The key to making this chili is cooking it low and slow for about an hour and a half. You can definitely dive in after an hour or even 45 minutes, but the flavor keeps getting better and better the longer you cook it.

But do watch the heat so the chili doesn’t scorch the bottom of your pot and make sure to get in there and stir it every once in a while. Making sure you have a good, heavy bottomed dutch oven is also a key to making this hot dog chili recipe.

There’s also a good amount of chopped onions in this recipe but they cook down so much you won’t even know they’re in there. Those onions are just there to add tons of flavors, not like the raw onions you might add on top of your chili dog.

Hot Dog Chili Recipe showing the chili in a pot after cooking

Also make sure when you’re browning the ground beef that you break it up into really small crumbles. That way when you go to spoon the chili over a hot dog or burger it’s not going to fall off in big pieces. That’s why we love this hot dog chili recipe, not only for the taste and flavor but because it works.

What Can You Put This Chili On Besides Hot Dogs?

So of course we’re going to be making tons and tons of chili dogs here, but please don’t stop there! Like I mentioned before, you can use this chili recipe and a topping for hamburgers, nachos, french fries and so much more.

• Make taco bowls or burrito bowls

• Spoon over rice or pasta

• Stir into macaroni and cheese

• Stuff into baked potatoes and top with cheese

• Scrape out centers of zucchini halves, add chili, cheese and bake

• Use as a filling for stuffed peppers

• East as is for a low carb meal

Hot Dog Chili Recipe showing chili dogs on a platter from the top

What Can You Substitute In This Hot Dog Chili?

Definitely ground turkey or even ground pork but I wouldn’t try ground chicken in this chili recipe. Ground chicken, to me, is pretty bland because it’s so lean so I don’t think you’re going to get the right flavor for this recipe.

The rest of the ingredients are pretty basic so I don’t think you’ll need to be substituting that many ingredients, it’s just a basic beef chili we’re making here. A perfect beef chili recipe that’s going to become a staple at your house, guaranteed!

Hot Dog Chili Recipe showing hot dogs on a platter with chili and onions

Can You Freeze Chili?

Chili is one of the best make ahead meals ever! We make a big batch (sometimes a double) of this chili to eat for dinner and leftovers then we freeze the rest in portions that our boys can take out and eat when they want.

Also a win win when your kids can feed themselves. Am I right? Take out a frozen bag of chili, heat it up and then they can make whatever they want. Which usually means cheesy chips and chili for dip in our house, but I’m good with that.

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Hot Dog Chili Recipe showing the chili in a pot after cooking

Hot Dog Chili Recipe

  • Author: Dan
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Yield: 12 Servings 1x

This simple beef chili recipe is perfect for serving on hot dogs, baked potatoes, french fires or nachos!



  • 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
  • 2 1/2 pounds lean ground beef (93%)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup finely diced onion
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce


  1. Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to a heavy bottomed pot or dutch oven over medium heat, then add the ground beef, salt and pepper. Brown the beef, breaking up into small crumbles as it cooks.
  2. Drain the beef and any grease form the pot and transfer the beef to a bowl.
  3. Turn the heat down to low, then add the other 2 tablespoons of olive oil along with the onions. Cook the onions for 7-8 minutes, frequently stirring so they don’t burn.
  4. Next add the garlic, tomato paste, cumin and chili powder stirring into the onions and Worcestershire sauce, then add the flour and cook for 1 minute.
  5. Add the beef back to the pot then pour in the broth and stir. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to a simmer for 1 1/2 hours.
  6. Taste for seasonings and serve as is or on hot dogs, hamburgers or spooned over french fries!
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

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39 Responses
    1. Amanda

      Really good recipe. I did add a few red pepper flakes to the onions while they were cooking. I did add a little more beef broth only because I used 3 pounds of burger/sausage. Made it day ahead of time like I do all my chili so the flavors really meld together by the time we eat!

    1. Dan

      No, not really. Sloppy joe’s are typically a heavily tomato based recipe, but you could use this Hot Dog Chili on a bun too!

      1. David

        The recipe was very good. I have been using a more tomato flavored recipe, but this one tasted classic to me. I’m going to make it again this week.

        1. Dan

          Thanks David! Yes, we use a more tomato based recipe when making regular chili but this one we like with less tomato.

    1. Corrina

      I used a substitute meat product subbed the beef broth for vegetable broth and it came out fantastic! Used it for chili cheese fries with daiya shreads and used a plant based hotdogs

  1. Lana Russell

    Instead of Browning the hamburger, I cover the raw burger with some broth , stir and cook slowly. It makes the cooked burger very fine, no lumps!

  2. Susie Norman

    I was so excited when I found this recipe. I followed to the T and it didn’t have hardly any taste. I thought it was my tastebuds so I had my husband taste. My husband kept adding to it until it was just ok but not what I think it should be. I keep wondering what I missed. ☹️

    1. Dan

      It’s not supposed to be a chili on its own really, Susie, although we eat it that way a lot of the time. It’s supposed to be a milder chili recipe that’s used as a condiment to a hot dog to pair with other flavors. Sorry you didn’t like it more!

  3. Earl Wallace

    I have been looking for a chili recipe that had the taste when I was a child growing up in South Carolina.The take out resturants would put chili on your hot dogs or hamburgers,amazing.Will try this recipe to see if it bring back old memories…

  4. Debbie

    Abosolutely amazing. Thank you. This is closest recipe I have found to the old fashioned southern chili I grew up on.

  5. David Cook

    I love to take this chili , poor over a bed of the small corn chips with shredded cheese mixed in , now top with chopped onions ,,,,great Frito Pie!

  6. Ralph Rankin

    Is that the right amount of broth? I followed the recipe exactly and it is too dry. Meat soaked up all the liquid.

    1. Dan

      It’s not supposed to have a lot of liquid. It’s to spoon over hot dogs so mostly a meat base, the broth is really just for flavor.

  7. Tracy

    I hope this works out well. I’m making enough of it to serve 300 chili dogs at a festival this weekend. I looked at 3 different recipes and this one looks like it would be the best. Stay tuned…..

  8. Kathy

    Loved this recipe. It is easy to make and the flavor is delicious. I think I am going to make another batch just to freeze in serving sizes for a lazy night when I don’t feel up to cooking.

  9. Chianne

    My husband is absolutely OBSESSED with this recipe! I add a little more seasoning, just to my personal taste along with some cayenne because we’re a spice family, but every time it’s a hit! Camping food staple for us

  10. NEBlueDiver

    Very good by itself with cheese and sour cream. We’ll try the leftovers on hot dogs. Great recipe! Thanks for sharing…

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