A surprising choice has emerged in the age old debate of Americans’ favorite regional hot dogs. In a new survey, corn dogs were the top dog (46 percent) among consumers who said they have a favorite regional hot dog. New York hot dogs topped with mustard and onions were the second choice at 38 percent beating out the well-dressed Chicago dog, which were tops among 26 percent of Americans with a favorite. Chicago dogs feature mustard, onions, relish, tomato slices, a dill pickle spear, a sport pepper and celery salt on a poppy seed bun. The survey was conducted online in April 2014 among over 2,100 U.S. adults ages 18 and older by Harris Poll for the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council (NHDSC).

“Americans have long loved corn dogs at county and state fairs where they first emerged, but their national popularity surprised us.  Historically, they faced tough competition from  the hometown favorites in New York and Chicago,” said Janet Riley, NHDSC President and ‘Queen of Wien.’ “We clearly underestimated the allure of the deep fried corn meal batter combined with the snap of the hot dog.”

The difference might be generational, as polling found that among those that have a favorite, corn dogs were the clear favorite among 18-34 year olds, with 55 percent choosing corn dogs while for Americans between 55-64 years of age, New York hot dogs remained the favorite (49 percent). An infographic with more on the results is available at www.hot-dog.org.

Season of Seven Billion Hot Dogs Kicks Off

No matter the age or regional preference, hot dogs will be a popular choice for Americans this summer. Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, Americans are expected to eat seven billion hot dogs. Consumption peaks over the Independence Day holiday, when Americans are expected to eat 150 million hot dogs.

“The summer grilling season is to hot dog fans what Christmas is to kids,” said Riley. “It’s an American tradition and whether you are at a barbecue, baseball game or in your backyard, odds are that hot dogs will be on the menu.”

The NHDSC has extensive resources on hot dogs and sausages for the summer including an all new page on AllRecipes.com with nearly 100 recipes; a guide to hot dog etiquette and guide to hot dogs across America with descriptions of different regional hot dogs and video tips on how to make them.