While classic barbecue fare is undoubtedly meat-centric, there’s a plant-based counterpart (or two, or three …) for just about anything you could want at an outdoor grill sesh that’s good enough to tempt even the most veg-avoidant of barbecue guests. With so many options on the market, you might not know where to start, so we’re here to help you out. So, let’s talk about one that’s very near and dear to our hearts: hot dogs. 

Jump to the hot dogs

Originating from Germany, food historians have traced the hot dog’s arrival in the United States to immigrants in the late 1800s. Affordable and convenient to eat on the way home, or during a day out on the town, they were quickly adopted as a food of the working class, sold by vendors from street carts on the sidewalk and at baseball games. 

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RELATED: The Essential Vegan Guide to Grilling: Burgers, Brats, Ribs, and More

Traditionally, hot dogs are made from the trimmings of chicken, pork, or beef. But these days, there are several vegan versions on the market—even IKEA makes one, which you can pick up at the food court. We picked the best of them, plus we threw in our favorite plant-based sausages, too, because we’re all about options.

Are hot dog buns vegan?

What would hot dogs be without the bun? Thankfully, you can find a lot of different kinds of vegan bread at the grocery store, but there are also several brands that use animal-derived ingredients in their hot dog buns. 

In general, milk and butter are the most common non-vegan ingredients you’ll find in store-bought hot dog buns. But, some options, the gluten-free ones, in particular, may contain eggs. 

It’s also not uncommon to find honey in commercial bread, so be sure to read the ingredients list before purchasing anything. Some vegan hot dog bun options include Food For Life’s Ezekiel 4:9 Sprouted Grain Hot Dog Buns, Arnold Country Potato Hot Dog Rolls, and 365 Classic White Hot Dog Buns.

Vegan hot dogs and sausages 

Reach for these meatless hot dogs and sausages while shopping for your next cookout. 

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1 Beyond Sausage

When Beyond Meat dropped its line of Beyond Sausages back in December 2017, we were ready. Made to taste like conventional pork sausage, these meaty links are crafted from a blend of pea and rice protein, plus coconut oil to deliver on juiciness. Plus, they’re wrapped in an algae-derived casing so you get that satisfying snap when you bite into one. The Beyond Sausage comes in three flavors: Brat Original, Hot Italian, and Sweet Italian all of which would be a welcome addition to your grill.

VegNews.ImpossibleHotDog4.ImpossibleFoodsjpgImpossible Foods

2 Impossible Hot Dogs

At the end of 2023, vegan meat giant Impossible Foods unveiled its newest product: plant-based hot dogs. The plant-based hot dogs boast that classic snap characteristic of beef- and pork-based dogs. Plus, they contain 50-percent less saturated fat and double the protein (12 grams per serving) than their animal-derived counterpart. But if you prefer bratwursts over hot dogs, Impossible also offers plant-based brats
Find it here

Plant-Based Hot DogsField Roast

3 Field Roast

The artisan vegan meat-makers at Field Roast have nailed the experience of eating a conventional hot dog, without the pork or questionable ingredients. The brand makes two kinds of hot dogs: the Stadium Dog and the Classic Smoked Frankfurters. The former is made from a blend of pea protein, vital wheat gluten, brown rice protein, and faba bean protein and infused with smoked sugar, plus garlic, pepper, and paprika for that classic ballpark flavor. Meanwhile, the latter is made from vital wheat gluten for that extra-meaty taste, and it sizzles beautifully on the grill. Pass the mustard, please!

Vegan Hot DogsLightlife

4 Lightlife

For a vegan hot dog that’s tried-and-true, look no further than Lightlife’s Jumbo Smart Dogs. Lightlife launched its iconic Smart Dogs back in 1993, the year of the original Jurassic Park and Free Willy. So, in terms of plant-based meat, they’ve stood the test of time. These vegan hot dogs are made from soy protein and deliver on that classic hot dog flavor that channels childhood backyard barbecues. Plus, Lightlife is a carbon-neutral company. Delicious and sustainable? That’s a win-win.


5 Tofurky

Variety is the spice of life, so they say. Old-school vegan brand Tofurky makes three flavors of plant-based sausage that’ll be right at home with all of the barbecue fixings. Serve their Beer Brats with sauerkraut and mustard, the Kielbasa with sauerkraut and quick-pickled red cabbage, and the Italian with grilled peppers and onions to make everyone at the barbecue very, very happy.

Vegan Hot DogsMorningStar Farms

6 MorningStar Farms

MorningStar Farms’ Veggie Dogs are a total nostalgia-fest for a lot of longtime vegans and vegetarians. Made from wheat gluten, they taste just like a classic American hot dog, with a savory flavor and underlying sweetness, courtesy of a dash of brown sugar. Serve them alongside classic barbecue sides like corn-on-the-cob, vegan potato salad, baked beans, and collard greens.

VegNews.OscarMayerVeganHotDog.TheKraftHeinzNotCoThe Kraft Heinz Not Company

7Oscar Mayer Plant-Based Hot Dogs

Earlier this year, Oscar Mayer shocked the world when it unveiled its latest launch: plant-based hot dogs! The vegan dogs are the newest product from The Kraft Heinz Not Company, a joined venture between plant-based food tech company NotCo and Kraft Heinz, the parent company of Oscar Mayer. While these hot dogs aren’t available in stores just yet, we’ve sampled them at trade shows, and trust us, you’ll want to keep an eye out for them later this year. 
Learn more here

For more vegan barbecue food, read:

Here at VegNews, we live and breathe the vegan lifestyle, and only recommend products we feel make our lives amazing. Occasionally, articles may include shopping links where we might earn a small commission. In no way does this effect the editorial integrity of VegNews.

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