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Japanese hot dogs, or japadogs, are a unique take on the classic American hot dog that is bursting with umami and dangerously addicting. These hot dogs combine the best of the Western and Japanese worlds with classic hot dogs topped with teriyaki sauce, Japanese mayo, crispy fried onions, pickled ginger, and more.
Whether you’re a hot dog lover or looking to try something new, Japanese hot dogs are worth a taste. You can use your favorite hot dog brand and create a combination of your most loved toppings.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Japadogs are a unique twist on a classic American dish with creative and flavorful toppings. You’ll fall in love with the teriyaki mayo (I know I prefer it over ketchup and mustard any day).
Japanese hot dogs is a versatile recipe that can be customized with different toppings. You can use whatever you have at home. I’m sharing a lot of ideas in the Variations and Substitutions section, so be sure to check them out.
This Japanese hot dog recipe is easy to follow and comes together in the blink of an eye. You only need to grill the hot dogs and toast the buns. Top with sauce and flavorful toppings and you’re ready to roll.
What Do I Need For This Japanese Hot Dog Recipe?
You only need a few ingredients for this easy Japanese hot dog recipe:
- 4 hot dogs
- 4 hot dog buns (or brioche rolls)
- 1/4 cup Japanese mayonnaise (Kewpie brand)
- 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
- 1/4 cup chopped green onions
- 1/4 cup furikake (Japanese seasoning)
- 1/4 cup crispy fried onions
- 1/4 cup pickled ginger
- 1/4 cup bonito flakes, optional
How To Make Japanese Hot Dogs
Step 1: Grill the hot dogs and toast the buns
Preheat your grill or stovetop grill pan to medium-high heat. Grill the hot dogs for 4-5 minutes, or until cooked through.
Step 2: Toast buttered buns until lightly golden.
While the hot dogs are cooking, toast the hot dog buns until lightly golden. You can spread a little butter on the buns or the grill to make it extra delicious.
Step 3: Prepare the sauce and fill your japadog
In a small bowl, mix together the Japanese mayonnaise and teriyaki sauce. You can also leave them separate if you prefer.
Step 4: Place cooked hot dogs in toasted buns.
Once the hot dogs are cooked, place them in the toasted buns.
Step 5: Drizzle with teriyaki mayonnaise.
Drizzle the teriyaki mayonnaise over the hot dogs.
Step 6: Garnish hot dogs with toppings.
Sprinkle the green onions, furikake, crispy fried onions, pickled ginger, and bonito flakes over the top of the hot dogs.
Step 7: Serve hot and savor the umami flavors.
Serve hot and enjoy all the umami goodness!
Notes & Tips
- If you don’t have a grill or stovetop grill pan, you can also cook the hot dogs in a skillet over medium-high heat.
- Be sure to use Japanese mayonnaise, as it has a different flavor and consistency than traditional American mayonnaise. Kewpie is the most popular brand of Japanese mayo and it comes in a ready-to-drizzle bottle.
- Experiment with different toppings to find your favorite combination. Some other popular toppings include wasabi, miso sauce, and seaweed salad (wakame).
- Don’t forget to toast the buns for optimal flavor. A little butter on the buns also goes a long way. Or toast them with a little sesame oil for a more authentic touch.
Variations & Substitutions
Substitute the hot dogs for vegetarian hot dogs or grilled tofu. Trader Joe’s has some awesome vegan hot dog options.
Use gluten-free hot dog buns or wrap the hot dogs in lettuce leaves instead. Or go crazy and make a hot dog taco with corn tortillas.
Add some heat by topping the hot dogs with sliced jalapeños, wasabi, or homemade sriracha sauce. Or simply sprinkle some red pepper flakes on top.
Substitut furikake with nori strips. Simply cut some nori sheets with scissors for a quick and easily available seaweed option.
Make quick beni shoga (red pickled ginger) at home to save money and have the freshest pickled ginger.
Instead of teriyaki sauce, try japadogs with takoyaki sauce and then drizzle with Kewpie mayo. You can buy takoyaki sauce at your local Asian market or an online Asian grocery store.
Top the Japanese hot dogs with grated radish, green onions, and dark soy sauce or teriyaki sauce for a healthier variation. Add as many veggies as you like!
Sprinkle some freshly grated cheddar cheese on top of your hot dogs and broil them in the oven or toaster oven until the cheese melts. Then top it with any other goodies you wish!
In my opinion, there’s no such thing as too much cheese, so feel free to add some to this Japanese hot dog recipe as well. If you’re lactose intolerant, check out our list of the best vegan cheese for quesadillas.
Go full Japadog kurobuta terimayo and make caramelized red onions instead of adding crispy fried onions. Or add both for more depth of flavor.
Sub the hot dogs for Japanese-style fried chicken (karaage) and sub the crispy onions with caramelized onions. This crispy fried chicken tastes amazing in a hot dog bun with all those sweet, savory, and spicy toppings.
Japanese hot dogs are a great food for outdoor BBQs or any large gathering. You can have one person on the grill, and arrange an array of toppings so that everyone can pick and choose their favorite combo.
What Are Japanese Hot Dogs Called?
In Japan, Japanese hot dogs are often called “corndogs” or “American dogs.” But outside of Japan, we call Japanese hot dogs “Japadogs”. If you haven’t visited the famous Japadog restaurant in Vancouver, I highly recommend it.
There are also unique variations of hot dogs that have been developed in Japan, such as the “octodog” which is a hot dog cut to resemble an octopus shape, typically served in bento boxes for kids. They also have a “shrimp dog” which is a hot dog made with shrimp and other seafood ingredients.
If you love this Japanese hot dog recipe, be sure to try our recipe for the Best Deep-Fried Sushi Roll. This is another American/Japanese fusion dish that is wildly addicting.
- 4 hot dogs
- 4 hot dog buns
- ¼ cup Japanese mayonnaise Kewpie brand
- ¼ cup teriyaki sauce
- ¼ cup chopped green onions
- ¼ cup furikake Japanese seasoning
- ¼ cup crispy fried onions
- ¼ cup pickled ginger
- ¼ cup bonito flakes optional
- Preheat your grill or stovetop grill pan to medium-high heat.
- Grill the hot dogs for 4-5 minutes, or until cooked through.
- While the hot dogs are cooking, toast the hot dog buns until lightly golden.
- In a small bowl, mix together the Japanese mayonnaise and teriyaki sauce.
- Once the hot dogs are cooked, place them in the toasted buns.
- Drizzle the teriyaki mayonnaise over the hot dogs.
- Sprinkle the green onions, furikake, crispy fried onions, pickled ginger, and bonito flakes over the top of the hot dogs. Serve and enjoy!