Crikey! What happens when you want to eat a hamburger and a hot dog at the same time? It’s bloody impossible. You simply can’t do it.
BUT recently I learned that you can! According to an article on The Verge, an Australian named Mark Murray invented the Hamdog bun at some point prior to 2006 and he received a patent for a “Combination hamburger and hotdog bread bun“ in the United States in 2009.
Murray eventually went on Australia’s version of Shark Tank and pitched this unique bun idea and the hamdog itself as “a party in your mouth.” This brief Facebook video below shows the most entertaining 20 seconds of his pitch. The video looks like it’s broken, but it’s not. It just has a gray preview image for some weird reason.
I guess it’s time to make a few “parties in our mouths” for all you Sheilas, Bruces, Blokes, and everyone else reading this! No more whinging let’s get to work!
There’s a person that I know on Twitter, named Michael Graham, who has suggested I make hamdogs on multiple occasions. I had a ground beef-focused sandwich concept disaster recently and decided to pivot to the hamdog and I sent Michael a message that I was finally going to finally tackle it and he got excited.
I’m pretty sure excited is how everyone should react when the subject of hamdog comes up.
The official Hamdog
Below are some schematics of the Hamdog bun which is pretty much the whole thing, The other pieces are a hot dog and a split hamburger patty. The bun is the most important part if you’re making your own Hamdog at home and I tried a few different methods to get my version. I cover this process down below.
It’s easy to make your own hamdog bun.
Note: I am aware that another version of a “hamdog” was invented in the United States in 2005. It’s a hot dog with ground beef wrapped around it and then grilled. Occasionally it’s covered in bacon and deep-fried.
We’ll save that version for another blog post.
I personally feel that the Hamdog bun pictured above doesn’t look so great. After studying it a bit, they’re likely using a mold that forms the rising dough into a Hamdog shape. The edges between the round part and the hot dog bun part are simply too uniformly attached to have been shaped the way I had to shape mine.
Other hamdogs online
Here’s a video that Emmy of Emmymade made in 2021 about the hamdog. She made her own buns from a King Arthur Baking burger bun recipe and made a fairly straightforward version of what a hamdog could be. Her video is great if you really want to see more about the hamdog. Otherwise, she makes enjoyable content and you should subscribe if that sounds like something you’d like.
Hamdog in the media
2016 seems like it was the year that the Australian Hamdog hit mainstream American media. There are all sorts of news videos or late-night talk host opening monologues on YouTube from that year discussing the hilarity of the hamdog and even pointing out the fact that an American should have been the first to invent a hot dog and hamburger combination!
In an interview with Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show on September 26th, 2016, Snakes on a Plane actor, Samuel L Jackson mentions that he thinks the hamdog could and should be served with chili and slaw. If you keep reading, you’ll see that a similar thing happens in my final hamdog version down below.
After 2016, it seems the hamdog hype has fizzled out. The social media accounts for hamdog have been fairly quiet and almost all the media coverage is stuck in time from six years ago. But if we want a hamdog we can make our own!
How to make a Hamdog bun
I made a couple of batches of the hamdog bun before I was fully satisfied. I got pretty good results from the first batch, but they were too big, forcing the burger to be too large and affecting everything down the line. On the second attempt, I found the perfect size for me was 65 grams for the ball and 45 grams for the log. This is 110 grams in total for the bun which is about 25 grams more than my typical small-ish burger bun. This turns into a bun that’s about the same size as a smaller bun that you’d buy at the store. An additional 25 extra grams does make this a larger bun, but you’re shoving a hot dog in there and it all works out.
I used my most recent and simplest—because of the number of ingredients—bun recipe and then I just manipulated the dough into different shapes than typical burger buns. Just below is the recipe for the dough I used, but I also added my hamdog bun process way down in the full sandwich recipe as well.
Here are five photos from my hamdog bun creation process that are attempting to display the steps required for an at-home bun-making application.
Once you have the hamdog buns shaped, you simply let them rise until they’re almost doubled as you would with any other bun, and then bake them with a few sesame seeds sprinkled on top.
The traditional Hamdogs
My first two hamdogs were very basic and plain. The first one didn’t even have cheese, because I wanted to mostly recreate some of the look of the promotional photography.
Below are photos of the second hamdog I made which did fulfill a greater purpose by becoming a cheesehamdog. Basically, I just sliced the burger patty down the middle on the griddle, stuck the hot dog in there, and then placed some cheese on top of both meats until it had a little meltiness.
Those were the basic hamdogs, but I wanted a hamdog version all of my own. Below you can read about…
The official Bounded by Buns Hamdog
The recipe for my version of the Hamdog is below. But because you need to make your own buns and because I didn’t want to release a recipe for you to follow that was super long and convoluted, I’m sharing a pickled onion and chili recipe here that you can use if you want to make a hamdog. It’s not super easy to find pickled Vidalia onions on the shelves, but if you can find some and pick up some prepared chili, you can just follow the recipe below. Otherwise, both the pickled onions and chili can be made in advance to make hamdog action happen quickly.
Pickled sweet Vidalia onions
This is my newest pickle obsession for sandwiches. A few years back, I tried North Carolina’s own Mt. Olive brand Vidalia onion pickles and now I can no longer find them at the store. They’re tasty and great on all types of sandwiches. If you can find them, give them a shot. I no longer can, so I decided to work on a recipe of my own.
My recipe isn’t exactly the same (the color is off because I’m not using turmeric powder that Mt. Olive does), but this recipe gets the onions to a point where they’re fantastic in a sandwich that could use some texture and flavor zip. I added jarred pimentos to my recipe for visual appeal, but they contribute very little. The onions themselves soften during the pickling process but still retain some crunch which makes them great in any sandwich that normally could use a pickle.
Here’s my pickled Vidalia onion recipe. If you know, you know how good this could be.
I’m a big fan of bean-less chili on hot dogs and hamburgers, so it only makes sense that my version of the hamdog would have chili. Plus, as I wrote above, Iron Man 2 actor, Samuel L. Jackson, said he thought that a hamdog should have chili, and I had to make sure that happened.
This is the hot dog chili recipe that I shared when I wrote about the Carolina dog and burger.
One big key to successful hot dog chili preparation is getting the pieces of ground beef to break down into small granules. I accomplish this with a potato masher on the meat after it’s fully cooked. You mash and twist the meat while it cooks and while the chili thickens. This should give you a great texture and consistency in your final chili.
Chili, cheese, pickled onion hamdog time!
Once you have your chili and onions, it’s time to hamdog. Here are photos of the super simple process of making one.
- Cook a hot dog and a hamburger patty until cooked to your liking
- Split the hamburger in half and stick the hot dog in the middle
- Cover with cheese if using
- Top everything with warm or hot chili
Below is the full recipe, including my version of the hamdog bun. There are several photos and a couple of cross-sections of this sandwich down below the recipe if you just like looking at stuff and reading captions.
Want to eat a hot dog and a hamburger at the same time but can't figure out how to do it? Well, I've got a heck of a solution for you!
- 280 grams all-purpose flour (2 1/4 cups)
- 17 grams granulated sugar (1 tablespoon)
- 8 grams salt (1 teaspoon)
- 6 grams instant yeast (2 teaspoons)
- 38 grams butter, room temperature (3 tablespoons)
- 175 grams lukewarm water (3/4 cup)
- 1 egg white
- sesame seeds
- 1 hot dog
- 4 ounces ground beef (a quarter of a pound)
- 1 slice of cheese (American, cheddar, Swiss or your favorite)
- 1⁄4 cup hot dog chili (click to view my recipe)
- 1 hamdog bun (from above)
- 1 cheese covered hamburger patty and hot dog (from above)
- pickled Vidalia onions (or another type of pickle - click to view my recipe)
- optional condiments (mayo, mustard, ketchup)
Hamdog bun: in a large bowl or the bowl of your mixer, weigh out and add your all-purpose flour, sugar, salt, and instant yeast and stir to combine all your dry ingredients to ensure no clumps.
Add the butter and room temperature water to the dry ingredients.
If using a stand mixer, knead for 8 minutes on medium speed. If you are kneading by hand, you will need about 15 minutes of kneading after all the ingredients are incorporated together.
The dough should be smooth and a little bit sticky.
Place your dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover. Let dough rise in a warm place for 1 to 1.5 hours. The dough should be doubled in size.
Remove dough from the bowl to a lightly oiled counter and divide into 5 balls that weigh 65 grams and 5 "log" shaped dough pieces that weigh 45 grams. There will be some dough leftover that you can form into a regular-shaped bun.
Flatten the larger balls of dough into flat circles. Then flatten the middle part of the dough logs and lay the circle in the center of the log. Using your fingers, pinch together the edges of the two dough pieces until they form a more consistent hamdog-shaped piece of dough.
Add each shaped hamdog bun to a parchment-lined sheet pan.
Cover your buns with lightly greased plastic wrap or a second sheet pan flipped over on top of the pan you're using.
Let the shaped buns rise for another hour or hour and a half until they are nearly doubled in size.
Near the end of your final proofing time, preheat your oven to 375 degrees F (177 C).
Add a whole egg white to a bowl with a tablespoon of water. Whisk until well combined. Carefully paint this egg white wash on top of each hamdog bun and then sprinkle liberally with sesame seeds. The egg white wash will help the seeds stick to the top of the buns and will help form a nice crust.
Bake your buns for 15 to 20 minutes rotating the sheet pan halfway through the baking time. I typically bake for 7 minutes and then rotate and come back in another 7 minutes to see what my level of brownness looks like. At that point your buns should be done all the way through, you're just trying to get them to the color you prefer.
Remove the hamdog buns from the oven and allow them to cool before slicing.
Meat cooking: place a medium skillet or griddle over medium-high heat. Add a hot dog to the pan.
Form the quarter pound of ground beef into a thin patty (about a 3/4-inch thick) that is a little bit wider than the round part of your hamdog bun (or as close as you can get). Salt and pepper the ground beef patty and place the seasoned side down in the hot pan. Season the second, top, side, and allow the patty to cook, untouched, for 3 to 4 minutes.
Flip the patty and cook for 1 minute. Using a spatula, cut the burger patty directly down the middle of the patty. Using tongs or a fork, move the hot dog into the center of the patty. Top the burger patty and hot dog with a slice of cheddar cheese (or your favorite cheese) cook the second side for at least 2 minutes. While this second side is cooking, add hot dog chili to the top of the cheese.
Remove the patty to a plate while you assemble the rest of your hamdog.
Hamdog assembly: slice and toast your bun if desired. Add any optional condiments to the bottom bun.
Carefully add the hamdog patty topped with cheese and chili to the bun.
Top with pickled Vidalia onions and close the hamdog with the top of the bun.
Serve and enjoy.
Sketchy cross-section time
Here are the photos of my final chili, cheese, and pickled onion hamdogs that I made this week.
Check back next week for some normal sandwiches maybe?!
I’m pretty sure there will be sandwiches. Will they be normal? Check back next week to find out.
Join up and support the site via Patreon to know what sandwiches are coming in advance!