These Easy Homemade Hot Dog Buns are perfectly soft and delicious! The dough is super versatile and can be used to make hot dog buns, subs or hamburger buns. I have provided tips and explained the basics to help you get perfect results every time with this hot dog bun recipe!
Updated: April 2018
There’s a saying that the noblest of all dogs is the hot dog, because it feeds the hand that bites it. It may also be the most popular dog in America this time of year. Although hot dogs were not on our menu this past fourth of July weekend, we enjoyed quite a few the week before, with these delicious, soft, easy Homemade Hot Dog Buns that I made. I think that being able to handle and bake dough that’s versatile enough to be hot dogs, subs or hamburger buns is a basic yet fantastic skill to have and that’s why I’m so excited to share this recipe with you guys!
So, to all my American readers, how was your fourth?
I had never had chili dogs until I came to the US, and I have to say that my first experience of it here was a complete disappointment. It was this drive-in place close to home and we went there only because of the rave reviews it had received online, only to find out that it was the most sad and limp “chili dog” that you’d ever see. The chili was perhaps the only redeemable thing about it, but only because the rest of it belonged in the hot dog hall of shame. Makes you wonder about those online reviews though doesn’t it?
Since then, we have started making our own hot dogs (not the sausage, but the rest of it at least). My husband makes a killer chili and once we get our hands on some delicious sausages, we are all set! These hot dog buns are soft, but not too soft that they just collapse after that first bite, and the best part is you can make the buns as big or as small as you like. Or turn them into burger buns!
For these hot dog buns, I’m going to show you how to shape these buns with TWO different methods.
The first is a cutting method – where the dough is shaped into a slab and then cut into hot dog buns.
The second is to individually shape each hot dog bun into the desired shape.
Dough that has been proofed overnight in the fridge
But first, let’s talk about the bread dough.
Usually with dough, there are two proof cycles. This lets the yeast develop which adds air and flavor, and it also lets the gluten in the dough develop too. The dough in this homemade hot dog bun recipe does require an overnight rise. I have tried it with and without the overnight rise, and I have to say the overnight rise results in a better taste and also makes the dough easier to handle as well.
Another great advantage of this technique/recipe is that you can cover the dough and keep it in the fridge until you’re ready to bake the bread, for up to 24 hours (I have kept it for up to 1 ½ days actually).
What are the TWO ways in which I can prepare these easy homemade hot dog buns?
The first method of shaping the dough is the cutting method. After the overnight rise, the dough is rolled out to a slab. This slab is cut into 10 – 12 sections, and then each section is placed on the baking tray, proofed for the second time and baked. This method is easier and less time consuming. With this method, the hot dog buns will have rougher edges where they were cut.
This is because the buns need be placed close to each other while baking, so that the buns support each other to rise UPWARD while baking, rather than flattening out. This will also result in the hot dog buns having soft sides as well.
The second method of shaping the dough is to portion the dough, and then shape each portion individually. For this, the dough is portioned out equally (by weight), after an overnight rise.
Each portion is then rolled out into a flat piece that’s about 5 – 6 inches long and 4 inches wide. The dough is then TIGHTLY rolled up, and the edges are tucked in and sealed, to form an evenly shaped cylinder that’s about 5 inches long and 1 inch wide.
This method is more time consuming but yields neater results. You can let these hot dog buns rise with good spacing between each, in order to have smooth sides. OR you can let them rise in close proximity, so that the dough sticks together as they rise and bake, and you end up with pull-apart hot dog buns.
After rolling out and cutting/shaping the dough into hot dog buns or burger buns (following the first overnight rise), you can freeze them (on a lined pan) and then store these frozen dough rolls in plastic bags in the freezer until you’re ready to bake them. However, if you do this, the second proofing at room temperature will be longer because now the bread rolls will have to defrost first and then rise.
Here’s my favorite way to freeze these homemade hot dog buns
I actually BAKE the hot dog buns, but take them out about 5 – 10 minutes before they are completely baked. These buns are then frozen and stored in air-tight containers. Then when I need hot dog buns, I can defrost the buns and then bake them for about 10 – 15 minutes until they are heated through and golden brown.
In the end, you will have perfectly soft, delicious homemade hot dog buns or burger buns that you and your family will LOVE! Plus you know exactly what went into them, which is always nice. 🙂
I love how versatile these homemade hot dog buns are!
You can cut this dough into 8 portions for larger buns or hamburger buns, and into 10 – 12 portions for smaller hot dog buns. I prefer to shape the buns into 10 – 12 portions for hot dog buns, but have my burger buns be slightly larger.
This recipe always gives me ridiculously delicious and soft buns that are perfect for hot dogs, subs and hamburgers. These hot dog buns can also serve as a canvas for bigger, better and tastier creations like these curry chicken meatball sandwiches! 🙂
Easy Homemade Hot Dog Buns (or Burger Buns)
- 17.6 oz all purpose flour
- ½ cup warm milk
- 1/2 cup warm water plus an extra 1/4 cup of warm water
- 2 tsp dry active yeast
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp softened butter / oil
- Extra oil to lightly oil the bowl
- 1 egg for the egg wash
In a mixing bowl (of your stand mixer), combine the flour, yeast, sugar and salt.
In another small bowl, whisk together the water, milk and egg.
With the paddle attachment in your stand mixer or a dough whisk, mix the dry ingredients and add the water-milk-egg mixture and mix to combine.
Switch to the dough hook of your stand mixer, and knead the dough to bring it together. Add more water if the dough is too dry. Knead for about 5 minutes, until you have a smooth ball of dough.
Add the oil or butter and knead for a further 5-10 minutes (I knead it for about 8 minutes), until the dough is shiny, smooth and a little tacky to the touch.
Lightly oil a big bowl and place the dough in it. Make sure the dough is lightly oiled on the surface as well.
For best results, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and store in the fridge overnight (8 hours) or for up to 24 hours. Alternatively, if you want to bake it on the same day, you can cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place, until it has doubled in size.
On the day you bake the bread rolls - turn the chilled dough out on to a lightly floured surface and lightly dust the surface of the dough as well. If the dough wasn't chilled, you may need extra flour on your hands and on your work surface to prevent the dough from sticking.
FOR THE CUTTING METHOD FOR HOT DOG BUNS
Roll out the dough into a rectangle that's about 16 inches in length and 4-5 inches in width. Cut the dough into 10 sections and place them on a parchment paper lined baking tray, with about 1.5 inches of space between each.
FOR THE SHAPING METHOD FOR HOT DOG BUNS
Cut the dough into 12 (or 10) equal sections. I usually weigh the bread dough so that I know how much each section should weigh.
Knead each portion for just a few seconds to form a smooth ball. Roll out each portion into a flattened piece of dough that's about 5 inches long and 4 inches wide. Then TIGHTLY roll up the dough to form a cylinder. Tuck in the sides/edges and pinch these edges and seams to seal. Place each portion on a parchment paper lined baking tray, about 2 inches apart.
FOR BURGER BUNS
Cut the dough into 8 sections (for larger buns) or 10 sections (for smaller buns) and roll these portions in your hands to form smooth balls. Place them on the parchment paper lined baking tray, about 3 inches apart.
Preparing the dough for the second proofing
Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it rise for 45 min in a warm place, until it has just about doubled in size. In winter, this can take a little longer than 45 min, and on very hot summer days, it can take less than 45 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C / 350°F about 30 minutes prior to baking.
Brush the hot dog rolls with the egg wash (lightly beaten egg) and bake in the preheated oven until they are golden brown on top and sounds hollow when tapped, which should take about 15-20 mins. (Optional - sprinkle sesame seeds or poppy seeds on the egg wash brushed dough before baking). SEE NOTES FOR FREEZING INSTRUCTIONS.
Remove from the oven and let the buns cool down enough to be handled comfortably. Best eaten on the same day. Will keep longer in an air-tight container in the fridge.
NOTES on freezing - bake the hot dog buns until they are just starting to turn golden brown - about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the buns from the oven, and allow them to cool down. FREEZE the hot dog buns at this point, and then place them in an air-tight container (or freezer bag).
When you're ready to bake, allow the buns to thaw out in the fridge first. Preheat oven to 350°F and place the thawed out hot dog buns on the tray and bake for about 10 to 15 minutes until the buns are golden brown on top.
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