Burger vs. Hotdog: Which is Better?

You have your faves, but which one is healthier?

With Fourth of July this weekend, it’s time for one of America’s favorite pastimes: grilling. No cook-out would be complete without hamburgers and hot dogs, but which one has more nutritional value? For this battle, we are comparing the beef patty and pork frank:

Hamburger nutrition

Seymour, Wisc., is the home of the American hamburger as we know it. In 1885, Charlie Nagreen realized  his meatballs were not selling well at a fair because they were too hard to eat. He flattened them and served them between two slices of bread and—voila!—the hamburger was born.

Hamburgers have 254 calories. A bun adds about 123 calories and cheese 100 calories per slice, bringing the total up to 477 calories. Fortunately, you can dress up a burger with fresh lettuce, tomato and pickles, which adds very few calories. You can reduce the calories by using 90% lean ground beef and swapping out the traditional bun for an English muffin.

Hot dogs nutrition

A hot dog is really a sausage that originated in Germany. It was originally called a frankfurter, after the city were it was created, Frankfurt-am-Main. A German butcher named Charles Feltman opened up the first Coney Island hot dog stand in 1871 and served the franks in a milk roll.

One pork hotdog has about 205 calories. The bun adds 120 calories, chili at least 100 calories, and cheese another 100 calories per slice. Mustard and relish don’t add much to the total.

Hotdog vs hamburger

Hot dogs and hamburgers are close in protein, but the frank is higher in fat and sodium. Yes, you can leave the top bun off the hamburger but not the hot dog. After all, the bun was added to both to make them easier to eat! Choose the hamburger with fresh veggies for your July 4th picnic, and after walking to your local fireworks show afterward, enjoy some ice cream, too!

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