Zippy Dogs

When I need a quick Potluck treat for kids I turn to Zippy Dogs. My three children are in the school play this Friday: “Alice in Wonderland.” Last Friday night they had a cast potluck and viewing of the TV version of the production. Knowing that I would mostly be feeding children I turned to this tried and true favorite that was originally discovered in the Better Homes and Gardens Junior Cookbook by my son Dryden. They were originally called Saucy Franks but I don’t think anyone calls them Franks anymore, do they?

We adapted the recipe to meet our tastes by adding a touch more brown sugar and vinegar making a very zippy sauce. This dish reminds me of the hot dog version of a Sloppy Joe. This is a welcomed dish by children and travels well to all potlucks and picnics.

Zippy Dogs
2 cups ketchup
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 T. apple cider vinegar
2 T. dried minced onions
1/2 t. black pepper
1/3 cup sweet pickle relish
16 hot dogs, halved- I like the uncured kind
16 hot dog buns, halved

In a large saucepan over medium heat, mix the first 6 ingredients. Bring to a simmer and add the hot dogs. Simmer 20 minutes with the lid off until sauce is thick and hot dogs cooked through. Place the Zippy Dogs in the buns and place on a platter or in a carrying container. Serve the extra sauce on the side. Makes 32 Zippy Dogs.

This is going to be a crazy busy week for me! So I will pop in on all of you when I can.


  1. Terry & Dennis Macri
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 6:32 AM | Permalink

    These look great, I bet they would work well in a crock pot…I am all about a crock pot, especially in the summer so I don’t heat up the house.

  2. Rindy R
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 6:49 AM | Permalink

    That sauce does sound good. I bet the kids loved them. Good luck this week on EVERYTHING you have to do!!!

  3. Sabrina
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 8:03 AM | Permalink

    Those do look yummy. Have a great busy week.

  4. unconfidentialcook
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 10:58 AM | Permalink

    I think I”d rather have zippy wings…I never could do ketchup and hot dogs, and my daughter refuses any condiment on a hot dog. How do zippy wings sound to you?

  5. That Girl
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 11:10 AM | Permalink

    Which version did they watch? My all time favorite is the 1985 version with the world’s best cast!

  6. Sara
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 3:11 PM | Permalink

    These sound delicious, I bet the adults like them as much as the kids!

  7. Britomart
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 4:01 PM | Permalink

    OMG! I have that cookbook. I am going to have to make those now.

  8. Josie
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 4:41 PM | Permalink

    I must be having a summer hot dog craving cuz that sounds so incredibly tasty that it made my mouth water (for real) 🙂

  9. Juliana
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 5:19 PM | Permalink

    Great idea for entertaining little kids and the “big” kids. I’ll definitely serve this hot dogs. The pictures look great!

  10. Linda
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 6:32 PM | Permalink

    These sound great! And the last time I heard them called franks was at Fenway Park in Boston. The vendors go up and down the aisles yelling “Franks, here!” My brother-in-law, whose name is Frank, said, Oh gosh, I didn’t want anyone to know I came to the game today! Groan…..

  11. noble pig
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 6:51 PM | Permalink

    I love the tang in the sauce. It reminds of my coney island version sans the meat.

  12. Maria
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 7:51 PM | Permalink

    Love the name:)

  13. Lori
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 8:50 PM | Permalink

    These sound delicious. I love that kind of a sauce. Sweet and zesty.

  14. Elyse
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 11:13 PM | Permalink

    Mmm, I think these zippy dogs are good for kids of all ages. I could definitely polish a few off! Sure everyone loved them. Hope the play goes well 🙂

  15. Grace
    Posted May 5, 2009 at 6:17 AM | Permalink

    sloppy-joed hot dogs? that sounds excellent–thanks for the heads-up! meanwhile, i hope you’ll tell us which characters your kids are playing. i love that story. 🙂

  16. biz319
    Posted May 5, 2009 at 2:12 PM | Permalink

    Yum! Love the zip in these dogs!

    I’ll have to keep this one in mind when I need a lot of kid friendly food!

  17. Debbers
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 9:56 AM | Permalink

    I have to tell you I made these for dinner last night – the family loved them – super easy and yummy.

    thanks – I truly love your blog!

  18. Robin Sue
    Posted May 6, 2009 at 10:58 AM | Permalink

    Debbers- thanks for coming back and letting me know you liked them!!

  19. Penny
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 8:04 AM | Permalink

    Good luck with all that you have to do. The hot dogs sound yummy. I need to find some uncured franks.

  20. GFE--gluten free easily
    Posted May 7, 2009 at 9:11 PM | Permalink

    That sounds like a winner topping to me! My homemade sloppy joes are actually similar to this recipe–I love that taste. 🙂


    Posted May 11, 2009 at 2:47 PM | Permalink

    Thank you so much for this recipe!!
    I used to have the cookbook when I was little, and this was a favourite Saturday lunch.
    Unfortunately the book went AWOL years ago, but I’ve never forgotten how good these are.
    I’ve been trying to track down the Saucy Franks recipe for a while now.
    Guess what I’m having for dinner tonight….

    Toronto, Canada

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