Healthy Hot Dog Toppings

Hot Dog Toppings Trio1Curious how a dietitian serves hot dogs? Three ways:
1. Topped with plenty of fruits and vegetables.
2. Served inside whole wheat hot dog buns.
3. Grilled outside for the best “at the ballpark” flavor.

That’s right. I balance those mouth-watering summer favorites with plenty of nutrient-rich ingredients. I know hot dogs aren’t the leanest of meats. Or the lowest in sodium. But that’s perfectly okay in my practical dietitian way of eating, because I prefer to celebrate the goodness of absolutely every food.

So let’s celebrate!
1. Protein provider. The typical hot dog – whether made from all beef, or part beef, pork, turkey and chicken – gives you at least 5 grams protein, and this protein helps keep your muscles strong and healthy. Concerned about nitrates and nitrites in hot dogs? Let me help allay your fears and concerns. These two ingredients are actually added to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria. And the allowable amount has been proven safe by extensive and thorough research. And did you know? The majority of the nitrates/nitrites in your diet come from a variety of vegetables! That’s right, nitrates/nitrites are naturally occurring in many vegetables like celery, beets, spinach and numerous lettuces.
2. Vehicle for whole grains. Hot dogs fit perfectly in those widely available whole grain and whole wheat buns. Every day, if you choose at least half your grain servings from the whole grain category, you’ll be giving yourself a huge health boost. Not only do whole grains give you more vitamins, minerals and usually more fiber, you’ll also help reduce your risk of Type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke.
3. Conduit for consuming more fruits and vegetables. Think about it…you enjoy fruit and vegetable-based salsa with pork, beef, fish, and poultry. Why not hot dogs?! And you love tons of vegetables on your deli sandwiches…why not on hot dogs?!  Just FYI, the average adult needs at least 2 cups fruit and 2 1/2 cups vegetables every day. Every little bit of those fruits and vegetables adds up, so start sprinkling and topping and stuffing away on those hot dogs!
4. Fastest of the fast. Nothing is faster on the grill than hot dogs. Plop, turn, remove. Hot dogs are already fully cooked when you buy them. You’re just reheating.
5. FTQ. That’s “food truck quality.” You know how tacos, dogs, and everything under the sun is a food truck trend and favorite? Well now YOU can serve up FTQ hot dogs with customized toppings right at your own backyard grill! Here are my three favorites – Vietnamese Hot Dogs, Hawaiian Hot Dogs, Chicago Hot Dogs.

Hot Dog Toppings Trio1

 

Vietnamese Hot Dogs
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • ½ cup light mayonnaise
  • 2-3 tablespoons Sriracha sauce
  • ½ large cucumber, thinly sliced
  • ¾ cup shredded carrots
  • ½ cup fresh mint leaves
  • 6 hot dogs
  • 6 whole wheat hot dog buns
Instructions
  1. Make spicy mayonnaise by mixing mayonnaise and Sriracha sauce together in a small bowl. Spread mixture on buns then add hot dog. Arrange cucumber slices, shredded carrot and mint leaves over hot dog.

Hot Dog Toppings Trio1
Hawaiian Hot Dogs
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 1 ¾ cup Pineapple Corn Salsa*
  • 6 hot dogs
  • 6 whole wheat hot dog buns
  • *Pineapple Corn Salsa
  • 1 can (20 ounces) pineapple tidbits in 100% juice, drained
  • 1 can (15.25 ounces) sweet corn kernels, drained
  • 1 very large red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 cup red onion, finely chopped
  • ⅓ cup green onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely minced
  • ⅓ – ½ cup cilantro, finely chopped
  • 4-6 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 heaping teaspoon lime zest
  • ¾ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
Instructions
  1. Top each cooked hot dog in a bun with about ¼ cup salsa.
  2. To make salsa, toss pineapple, corn, red bell pepper, red onion, green onion, jalapeno pepper and cilantro together in a large bowl. In a separate small bowl, whisk together lime juice, lime zest, garlic powder, cumin and salt. Pour over pineapple-corn mixture and toss lightly. Adjust seasonings to your liking. Refrigerate leftovers in tightly covered container.Yields 5 ½ cups salsa

Hot Dog Toppings Trio1
Chicago Style Hot Dogs
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 1-2 tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • 4 tablespoons white onion, finely chopped
  • 6 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • 6 thin dill pickle spears
  • Hot sport peppers
  • Yellow mustard
  • Celery salt
  • 6 hot dogs
  • 6 whole wheat hot dog buns
Instructions
  1. Divide tomatoes, onion, sweet pickle relish and dill spears between 6 hot dogs on bun. Add desired amount of sport peppers and mustard. Sprinkle with celery salt.

Disclosure: As a proud supporter of Indiana Agriculture, I’m happy to mention this is a sponsored post for the Indiana’s Family of Farmers. And did you know that mint on your Vietnamese Hot Dog may have been grown in Indiana! That’s because Indiana is one of the top mint-producing states.

Zippy, Zesty, Super-Saver Salsa

Zesty Strawberry & Mango Salsa

Zesty Strawberry & Mango Salsa

Zippy and zesty because it packs a punch of jalapeno pepper, lime and cilantro.

Super-saver because it features in-season mango and strawberries. And in-season translates to “at their most budget-friendly price right now.”

So it makes perfect cents to take advantage of both antioxidant and nutrient-rich fruits over the coming weeks.

But instead of just enjoying them “as is” for a snack or side dish, or adding them to yogurt, smoothies and cereals, try this easy-to-make salsa. You’ll find yourself scooping up more of the salsa and eating less of the corn tortilla chips – it’s that good and refreshing. You can even make a batch and serve it as an accompaniment to grilled or roasted fish, chicken, pork and beef.

Isn’t it nice to know you’ll be saving money AND giving yourself a dose of phytonutrients to promote heart, brain and skin health, optimal immune function and possibly even help lower cancer risk?

Happy springtime to all!

Zesty Strawberry & Mango Salsa
1 pound strawberries, hulled and diced (roughly 3 heaping cups diced)
1 large mango, peeled, pitted and diced (roughly 1-2/3 cups diced)
1/3 cup diced red onion
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and very finely diced
Zest from 1 lime
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
3 – 4 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
½ teaspoon Kosher salt
¼ teaspoon garlic powder

In a large bowl, gently toss strawberries, mango, red onion and jalapeno pepper together. In a small bowl, whisk together lime zest, lime juice, cilantro, salt and garlic powder. Pour over berry mixture and toss lightly to blend. Serve immediately or refrigerate in tightly covered container.
Makes about 5 cups salsa (10 servings of ½-cup each)
Recipe created by Kim Galeaz, RDN CD

Per serving: 42 calories, 10 g carbohydrate, 0 fat, 0 protein, 112 mg sodium, 2 g fiber, 39 mg vitamin C (65% of Daily Value).

Living downtown Indianapolis = Super Sized Excitement

Living in downtown Indianapolis right now is one mega, super-sized serving of excitement.  That’s right – I live less than a mile from Lucas Oil Stadium, home of Super Bowl XLVI on February 5. Since Super Bowl is apparently the #2 eating event for Americans, I’d like to share my ideas for serving great-tasting, nutrient-rich and decadent foods for this super-sized occasion.  

Menu
Smoky Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Chipotle-Lime Mayonnaise on Whole Grain Mini Buns

Good Luck Salsa with Whole Grain Corn Tortilla Chips

Bacon Apple Football Cheeseball

Pork tenderloin stars as the lean protein choice to provide satiety and an excellent source of certain B-vitamins; it’s also a good source of zinc. Black-eyed peas, a fiber-filled legume, star in the savory salsa that will bring Good Luck to your team. And decadent bacon stars in the dried-apple studded, calcium-rich sweet-savory cheeseball shaped like a football.

Disclosure: I’m a culinary-nutrition consultant to restaurants and numerous public relations representing one or more foods/beverages included in this post and several agriculture organizations.

 

Smoky Rubbed Pork Tenderloin

2 pork tenderloins, about 2 to 2 1/3 pounds total

Smoky Rub

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder

2 teaspoons smoked paprika

1 teaspoon ancho chili powder

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon sugar

¼ teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 425°F. Combine all smoky rub ingredients in small bowl and stir well. Completely cover pork tenderloins with rub. Roast for 20 to 27 minutes, or until temperature in center of pork is 145 degrees. Remove pork and let rest 3 minutes before slicing. Serve with chipotle lime mayo on whole grain buns. Makes about 6 to 8 servings.

Find more inspiration with lean pork, bacon and side-dishes for your Super Bowl Party at www.PorkBeInspired.com

Good Luck Salsa

2 cans (15 – 16 oz.) black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained

1 can (15 – 16 oz.) white and yellow sweet corn, rinsed and drained

1 can (15 oz.) petite diced tomatoes, drained

1 to 1 ½ jalapeño peppers, seeded and finely minced

¼ to 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

¾ cup finely chopped red onion

1/3 cup red wine vinegar

2 ½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon dried oregano

¾ to 1 teaspoon ground cumin

Combine peas, corn, tomatoes, peppers, cilantro and onion in large bowl. Whisk together remaining ingredients and pour over vegetables, stirring to combine and coat. Refrigerate a couple hours before serving. Enjoy with whole-grain corn chips. Makes about 6 cups, or 24 servings of 1/4 cup each.

Living downtown Indianapolis = Super Sized Excitement

Living in downtown Indianapolis right now is one mega, super-sized serving of excitement.  That’s right – I live less than a mile from Lucas Oil Stadium, home of Super Bowl XLVI on February 5. Since Super Bowl is apparently the #2 eating event for Americans, I’d like to share my ideas for serving great-tasting, nutrient-rich and decadent foods for this super-sized occasion.  

 

Menu
Smoky Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Chipotle-Lime Mayonnaise on Whole Grain Mini Buns

Good Luck Salsa with Whole Grain Corn Tortilla Chips

Bacon Apple Football Cheeseball

 

Pork tenderloin stars as the lean protein choice to provide satiety and an excellent source of certain B-vitamins; it’s also a good source of zinc. Black-eyed peas, a fiber-filled legume, star in the savory salsa that will bring Good Luck to your team. And decadent bacon stars in the dried-apple studded, calcium-rich sweet-savory cheeseball shaped like a football.

 

Disclosure: I’m a culinary-nutrition consultant to restaurants and numerous public relations representing one or more foods/beverages included in this post and several agriculture organizations.

 

Smoky Rubbed Pork Tenderloin

 

2 pork tenderloins, about 2 to 2 1/3 pounds total

Smoky Rub

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder

2 teaspoons smoked paprika

1 teaspoon ancho chili powder

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon sugar

¼ teaspoon salt

 

Preheat oven to 425°F. Combine all smoky rub ingredients in small bowl and stir well. Completely cover pork tenderloins with rub. Roast for 20 to 27 minutes, or until temperature in center of pork is 145 degrees. Remove pork and let rest 3 minutes before slicing. Serve with chipotle lime mayo on whole grain buns. Makes about 6 to 8 servings.

 

Find more inspiration with lean pork, bacon and side-dishes for your Super Bowl Party at www.PorkBeInspired.com

 

Good Luck Salsa

 

2 cans (15 – 16 oz.) black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained

1 can (15 – 16 oz.) white and yellow sweet corn, rinsed and drained

1 can (15 oz.) petite diced tomatoes, drained

1 to 1 ½ jalapeño peppers, seeded and finely minced

¼ to 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

¾ cup finely chopped red onion

1/3 cup red wine vinegar

2 ½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon dried oregano

¾ to 1 teaspoon ground cumin

 

Combine peas, corn, tomatoes, peppers, cilantro and onion in large bowl. Whisk together remaining ingredients and pour over vegetables, stirring to combine and coat. Refrigerate a couple hours before serving. Enjoy with whole-grain corn chips. Makes about 6 cups, or 24 servings of 1/4 cup each.

 

 

 

A Dietitian’s Football Party Strategy: No Fumbles, All Extra Points

     3BeanChiliBY2

Formation for Winning Strategy: Flavorful + Nutrient-Rich Foods

Forward Pass: Lean Beef in Chili & Burrito Meat + Lean Pork Tenderloin

Field Goal: Vegetable-Rich with Beans, Corn, Tomatoes, Chilies & More in Chili & Salsa

Touchdown: Fruit for Dessert with Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake Dip

Celebration: Fantastic, Flavorful and Colorful Foods = Happy Party Guests

Hearty Three Bean Chili with Beef

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

2 ½ cups chopped onions

1 to 2 tablespoons minced garlic

1 pound ground beef (sirloin or round – 10% fat maximum)

1 can each (15 – 16 oz. each) red, pinto and light kidney beans

2 cans (14.5 to 15 oz.) petite diced tomatoes

3 cans (15 oz.) tomato sauce

¼ cup brown sugar

½ teaspoon salt

1 ½ teaspoons black pepper

1 tablespoon ground cumin

2 tablespoons chili powder

½ to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

6 to 12 drops hot red pepper sauce

Heat oil in large pot over medium-high heat. Add onions, garlic, and ground beef. Cook until beef is crumbled and cooked thoroughly. Carefully drain grease. Drain all canned beans and rinse to remove sodium. Add beans to onion-meat mixture along with all other ingredients. Stir well. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer 30 to 45 minutes.

Makes about 16 cups (8 servings of 2-cups each)

 

Zesty Black Bean & Corn Salad with Lime Dressing 

Bean & Corn Salad           
2 cans (15 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed

1 bag (16 oz.) frozen sweet corn kernels, thawed (roughly 3 cups)

1¾ cup chopped red onion

1½ cup chopped green onion

1 very large red bell pepper, chopped

2 jalapeno peppers, finely minced

2 cups chopped tomato

2/3 cup chopped cilantro

Lime Dressing

3/4 cup fresh lime juice

Zest of 1 large lime

1½ tablespoons minced garlic

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon Kosher salt

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl and set aside. Combine all dressing ingredients and mix well. Pour over salad and toss lightly to thoroughly coat all ingredients. Chill several hours before serving.  Refrigerate leftovers in covered container.

Makes almost 12 cups (about 16 servings, ¾ cup each)

  

Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake Dip with Apples & Pears

1 package (8 oz.) Neufchatel 1/3-less fat cream cheese

1 can (15 oz.) pure pumpkin

½ cup firmly packed brown sugar

1½ teaspoons pumpkin pie spice 

Apples, pears and Asian pears, cut into thick slices

Combine cream cheese, pumpkin, brown sugar and pumpkin pie spice in a food processor until thoroughly blended. Chill at least one hour before serving. Serve with slices of fresh pears, apples and Asian pears. Makes about 2 ¾ cups dip (11 servings of ¼-cup each)

Latin-Rubbed Pork Tenderloin

The spice rub can be made ahead and stored in a covered jar on the pantry shelf. For a healthy, quick weeknight meal, the pork can be rubbed and set aside for as little as 20 minutes….just do it while the grill heats!

2 pork tenderloins, about 2 pounds total

Latin Spice Rub

1 tablespoon dark brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon cayenne

Mix together Latin spice rub. Rub spice mixture over pork tenderloins. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 24 hours. Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes prior to grilling. Prepare medium-hot fire in charcoal grill, preheat gas grill to medium-high, or set large grill pan over medium-high heat on stovetop. Spray grill grate with vegetable oil spray. Grill pork, covered, turning as each side sears, for total of 12 to 14 minutes. Using instant-read thermometer, check internal temperature of pork; the pork is done when it registers 150 to 155 degrees. When done, transfer pork to cutting board. Let pork rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

  

Hot & Spicy Burrito Meat

1 pound lean ground beef (no more than 10% fat content)*

1 can (4.5 oz) chopped green chiles

1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes with green chilies, drained

1 teaspoon chili powder

½ to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

10 drops hot pepper sauce

In a large skillet over medium heat, cook ground beef. Add green chilies, diced tomatoes and seasonings. Cook until all ingredients heated thoroughly.

Serve in flour or corn tortillas, with taco shells or with tortilla chips.

Can also serve as a dip with tortilla chips.

Makes about 2 2/3 cups mixture (8 servings of 1/3 cup each)

*Or one 12 oz. package meatless soy burger-style crumbles for a meatless filling. If using soy crumbles, do not drain diced tomatoes.

Zesty Black Bean & Corn Salsa

Call it a salad, a salsa, a dip. Doesn’t matter. What DOES matter is that you enjoy lots of this zesty creation, because it is 100% nutrient-rich. As a registered dietitian, I especially love it because it uses FOUR forms of fruits and vegetables – and ALL are nutrient-rich: Fresh, frozen, canned and 100% juice.

 This salsa/salad is:
*Excellent source of vitamin C, A, numerous other vitamins & minerals and powerful antioxidants

*Excellent source of fiber

*Only 110 calories in ¾ cup

 Plus, this recipe makes a Big Batch – perfect for your summertime cookouts, parties and family reunions!  Serve with cut up fresh veggies like red, green and yellow bell pepper wedges, whole-grain crackers or blue corn chips and baked scoop corn chips. I know there’s a lot of chopping and prep for this salad, but it’s worth every minute!

Zesty Black Bean & Corn Salad with Lime Dressing

Bean & Corn Salad       
2 cans (15 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed

1 bag (16 oz.) frozen sweet corn kernels, thawed (roughly 3 cups)

1¾ cup chopped red onion

1½ cup chopped green onion

1 very large red bell pepper, chopped

2 jalapeno peppers, finely minced

2 cups chopped tomato

2/3 cup chopped cilantro

Lime Dressing

3/4 cup fresh lime juice

Zest of 1 large lime

1½ tablespoons minced garlic

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon Kosher salt

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

 Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl and set aside. Combine all dressing ingredients and mix well. Pour over salad and toss lightly to thoroughly coat all ingredients. Chill several hours before serving.  Refrigerate leftovers in covered container.

 Makes almost 12 cups (about 16 servings, ¾ cup each)

 Nutrition information for ¾ cup: 110 calories, 5 g protein, 19 g carbohydrate, 2 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 0 mg cholesterol, 325 mg sodium, 38 mg calcium, 5 g dietary fiber.