Homemade Frankfurters

Homemade frankfurters with potato salad and mustard.

In Vienna these links are called Frankfurter Würstl, named for the city Frankfurt am Main in Germany. In most of the rest of the world (including Frankfurt) they are called Wieners, which means “Viennese.” Go figure. Whatever you call them they are the ancestor of the North American hot dog.

The old world version is usually 100% pork in delicate lamb casings, lightly smoked. North American hot dogs can be pork, beef, or a combination of the two, usually in synthetic casings.

I link mine extra long, so they barely fit on a dinner plate.

To emulate the very fine texture of the commercial varieties I grind twice through a 3/16″ plate, and then do a lengthy mixing phase, roughly 1 minute on a medium speed then 2 minutes on high speed. It’s important to make sure the meat mixture is thoroughly chilled before starting the mixing. The recipe below has an ice water content of almost 20% of the weight of the meat, and I like to add half that at the start of mixing, and the remainder when I increase the speed.


adapted from the Hot Dog recipe in Charcuterie by Ruhlman and Polcyn


  • 1.250 kg pork shoulder
  • 15 g kosher salt
  • 7 g cure #1
  • 9 g mustard powder
  • 6 g sweet paprika
  • 3 g ground coriander
  • 2 g black pepper
  • 18 g garlic, finely minced with a microplane
  • 30 g light corn syrup
  • 250 mL ice-cold water
Homemade frankfurters


  1. Thoroughly chill the pork in the manner described in this post.
  2. Grind twice through a 3/16″ plate. Transfer to the mixing bowl of a stand mixer. Add all salts, spices, corn syrup, and half the ice water.
  3. Mix on medium speed for 60 seconds. Add remaining ice water, increase speed to high and mix another 90-120 seconds.

For Frankfurters

  • Stuff into 22-24 lamb casings and link at 10″
  • Gently (~225°F) hot-smoke to an internal temperature of 150°F. Chill and then steam or poach to serve.

For Hot Dogs

  • Stuff into 29-32 hog casings and link at 5-6″
  • Gently hot-smoke to an internal temperature of 150°F. Chill and then steam or poach to serve.