About Us

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Ball Park was founded just 181 years after
America declared its independence
from Great Britain. Coincidence?

We think not!

The Ball Park® brand was launched in 1957 in response to a request from the owner of the Detroit Tigers baseball team. The Ball Park® Frank quickly became such a success that it was expanded nationally. Ball Park® is now a national premium brand of hot dogs with a reputation for great taste and quality. Today, you can find Ball Park® franks in supermarkets, convenience stores, and Detroit’s Comerica Park.

Since 1957, Ball Park® has been focused on making hot dogs that are meaty, juicy, and bold. Now we’ve gone a step further with our Flame Grilled Beef Patties, Angus Brats, and Angus Beef Hot Links.

HOT DOG HISTORY

Sausage is one of the oldest forms of encased meat, having been mentioned in Homer’s Odyssey, composed around 700 B.C.

Frankfurt, Germany is traditionally credited with originating the frankfurter. It’s said that the frankfurter was developed there in 1487, five years before Christopher Columbus set sail for the new world.

This claim is disputed by those who assert that the popular sausage – known as a “dachshund” or “little-dog” sausage – was created in the late 1600s by Johann Georghehner, a butcher living in Coburg, Germany. According to this report, Georghehner later traveled to Frankfurt to promote his new product. However, the people of Vienna (Wien), Austria, point to the term “wiener” to prove their claim as the birthplace of the hot dog.

It is likely that the North American hot dog comes from a common European sausage brought here by butchers of several nationalities. Also in doubt is who first served the dachshund sausage with a roll. One report says a German immigrant sold them, along with milk rolls and sauerkraut, from a pushcart in New York City’s Bowery during the 1860’s.

Since the sausage culture is German, it is likely that Germans introduced the practice of eating the dachshund sausages, which we today know as the hot dog, nestled in a bun.

In 1871, Charles Feltman, a German butcher, opened up the first Coney Island hot dog stand.

In Chicago in 1893, the Colombian Exposition brought hordes of visitors who consumed large quantities of sausages sold by vendors. People liked this food that was easy to eat, convenient and inexpensive. Also in 1893, sausages became the standard fare at baseball parks. This tradition is believed to have been started by a St. Louis bar owner, Chris Von de Ahe, a German immigrant who also owned the St. Louis Browns major league baseball team.

How the term “hot dog” came about is also in question. Some say the word was coined in 1901 at the New York Polo Grounds on a cold April day. Vendors were hawking hot dogs from portable hot water tanks shouting, “They’re red hot! Get your dachshund sausages while they’re red hot!” A New York Journal sports cartoonist, Tad Dorgan, observed the scene and hastily drew a cartoon of barking dachshund sausages nestled warmly in rolls. Not sure how to spell “dachshund” he simply wrote “hot dog!” The cartoon is said to have been a sensation, thus coining the term “hot dog.” However, historians have been unable to find this cartoon.

Into the early 1900s, with the rise of immigration and urbanization, these sausages in buns were becoming increasingly popular at public events – baseball games, boxing matches, fairs, carnivals and horse races. It made sense – they were cheap and easy to produce in mass quantities. They were already cooked, so they just needed to be re-heated. Fans and consumers liked them as well – hot dogs were an inexpensive, warm, hand-held food and that tasted great. The same holds true today.

Source: National Hot Dog & Sausage Council www.hot-dog.org

Quick & Easy
Meals

Quick & Easy Recipes

These easy-to-make meals are so good you’ll want to build a time machine to go back and feed them to each and every one of the Founding Fathers.

United Tastes of
America

Regional Hot Dogs

Take a gander at these fine regional hot dog recipes and eat your way from sea to shining sea without leaving your grill. Isn’t diversity delicious? Ah, America.

Quick & Easy

Alabama-style Willy Dog

Popular in lower Alabama, these hot dogs are topped with ketchup, mustard, chili, sauerkraut and pickles.

D.C.’s Monumental Dog

Popular within the nation’s capital, this hot dog is typically a beef frank topped with banana peppers, onions, diced red peppers, sliced pickles and served on a steamed potato hot dog bun that has been spread with mayonnaise.

New York City’s Street Cart Dog

Essentially the hot dog capital of the nation, New York City’s infamous street cart dog is boiled and then served with a special onion sauce and deli-style yellow mustard, or in some cases sauerkraut.

Chicago Dog

Served in a poppy seed bun, this legendary hot dog is layered with yellow mustard, green relish, chopped raw onion, fresh tomato, a pickle spear and topped with a touch of celery salt.

Carolina Hot Dogs

Native to both North and South Carolina, these franks are served with chili, cole slaw, mustard and onions.

Georgia’s Scrambled Dog

Served on a toasted white bun, this southern classic is usually topped with mustard and a spicy chili made with beans and large chunks of diced raw onions.

Boston’s Frank

As one of the nation’s most famous franks, this hot dog is boiled and grilled, then served in a New England-style bun topped with mustard and relish.

Detroit’s Coney Dog

This Michigan favorite is topped with an all-meat, bean-less chili, diced yellow onion, yellow mustard and is typically served on a steamed bun.

L.A. West Coast Dog

This west coast wiener is wrapped with bacon and is topped with grilled onions, jalapeño or bell peppers and salsa.

Texas Chili Dog

This spicy offering from Texas is generally a beef frank topped with spicy chili, cheese and jalapeño peppers for an extra kick.

FAQ and Grilling Tips

How Do I Prepare My Hot dog?

BOIL about 6-8 minutes MICROWAVE 30-35 seconds GRILL 6-8 minutes STEAM until meat reaches 165°

prepare according to package instructions

Our hot dogs are fully cooked but we recommend that you prepare the hot dogs according to the package instructions.

Thaw hot dogs before grilling

Before grilling a hot dog, we recommend thawing hot dogs in the refrigerator for 72 hours at an internal temp of 35 to 40 degrees.

consume within 3-5 days

Once the product has been cooked, it should be consumed within 3-5 days and kept in the refrigerator during this time.

spray the grill to keep food from sticking

Spray It Before You Lay It: Before you turn on the grill and lay your hot dogs down, spray the grill with vegetable oil or cooking spray to ensure the food doesn’t stick to the grates as it’s cooked. Sticky grates are your enemy.

Put hot dog toppings on top of the hot dog

Dress the Dog, Not the Bun: Put hot dog toppings on top of the hot dog. This one’s pretty simple, right?

keep the grill covered while cooking

Gimme That Smoky Flavor: If you prefer your grilled meats to have a smoky taste, keep the grill covered while cooking.

Use tongs rather than a fork

Don’t Let the Juice Loose: Use tongs rather than a fork to gently turn the franks so you lose minimal juice.

heating methods

Although we’re impartial to either heating method as long as you’re grilling with a Ball Park product, charcoal will give your hot dog a slightly smokier-flavor compared to gas. 

How to Dress A Hot dog

hot dog toppings
  • 3rd Shredded cheese and spices (like celery salt or pepper)
  • 2nd Chunky condiments like relish, onions and sauerkraut
  • 1st Wet condiments like mustard and chili

Clean Up

Click here for an excellent “how to” tutorial on cleaning your grill, or print it off and hand it to your kid.

Does ball park have hot dog recipes?

Was George Washington America’s first president? Yes! You can find our delicious hot dog recipes on our brand Web site, plus some tasty regional recipes, too.

What are some good side dishes to serve with hot dogs?

Hmm, how about everything? There are endless summer side dishes for cookouts, but it all depends on personal preference. Crowd pleasers include potato salad, corn on the cob, watermelon or even potato chips if you’re in a pinch for time.

Does ball park have gluten-free franks?

Unfortunately, our hot dogs are not gluten-free (they are completely glue-free, however). Our Ball Park Flame Grilled Patties, on the other hand, are 100% gluten-free.

WHERE CAN I BUY BALL PARK BRAND PRODUCTS?

What a thoughtful and intelligent question. Simply visit our product locator.

Flame Grilled
Burgers

Beef Patties

There are few things more American than a good, flame-grilled burger. Ball Park Beef Patties are flame grilled and made with 100% beef and available in three varieties: Beef, Beef & Cheese and Beef & Onion. Plus, they are microwave ready in about a minute, because Americans should never have to wait for delicious, flame-grilled burgers.

Turkey Patties

Turkey Patties

O say can you taste the flame grilled flavor of our delicious Flame Grilled Turkey Patties? Of course you can. Those are American taste buds.

Chicken Patties

Chicken Patties

America stands for freedom, so feel free to fall in love with our new
flavor-filled Flame Grilled Chicken Patties.

Angus
Franks

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Fun Fact: If you move the letters around in Angus, it spellss America. Ball Park Angus Beef Franks are made with 100% Angus Beef. Available in original, bun size as well as our low fat/full flavor recipe.

Beef
Franks

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If there’s one thing this nation loves, it’s beef and hot dogs. And freedom.

Classic
Franks

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Hot dogs are a time-tested American tradition. No matter which toppings you choose, a classic Ball Park frank never disappoints.

Poultry
Franks

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Did you know that the turkey was almost our national bird? Luckily, we chose the Bald Eagle so feel free to grill up some guilt-free delicious lean turkey franks.

Better for You
Franks

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We believe choosing between your health and your taste buds counts as cruel and unusual punishment.

Park's
Finest

Premium Franks

Well, America. We did it. We reinvented the hot dog. It's time for you to reinvent your tastebuds with Park's Finest: Our Finest Premium Hot Dog. Ever. Available in five outstanding flavors and made with 100% Beef, 0% Artificial Preservatives and no Nitrates or Nitrites, this game-changing frank is sure to become a legendary part of your grill.