Nathan's Famous Beef Franks Review



For a hot dog that was a favorite going in, a weak second-place finish was totally unexpected. Some reviewers deemed it bland while others liked the taste.

Our panel of taste testers offered up mixed assessments in their review of Nathan's Famous Beef Franks. Despite an earlier avowal by several panelists that this brand is tops, a blind taste-off with four other beef hot dogs revealed the error of their preconceptions. Comments like "tougher, very good flavor, but not as juicy" and "good, light flavor, but weird aftertaste" were directed at Nathan's Famous. Some reviewers called them out as "bland" while others said they were "good." In the end, the brand tied for a distant second place finish in the beef category alongside a Kroger store brand. Nathan's Famous franks cost considerably more than other beefy dogs in our review sample, causing some judges to declare them beyond their definition of cheap, and several expressed shock that less costly franks held greater appeal.

Editors at Redbook, by comparison, were wowed. Their review declared Nathan's Famous the best beef frank, citing virtues such as beefy flavor, a snappy skin, and a taste that rises to hot dog expectations.

Nathan's Famous Beef Franks (starting at 37 cents/serving, Amazon) are filled with 170 calories and 15 grams of fat, including 6 grams of saturated fat. Sodium content reaches 470 milligrams, the equivalent of 20 percent of the recommended daily value.

The brand is rich in hot dog history. It started out in 1916 as a small hot dog stand in Coney Island, New York and later blossomed into its "famous" reputation. The beef hot dogs were even served to England's reigning monarchs in 1939 and a bevy of celebrities and politicians have flocked to Nathan's Famous for photographs. Nathan's Famous beef franks are now sold throughout the United States, in retail markets and fast-food outlets. If you venture into a Nathan's Famous restaurant you'll find a menu that also includes chicken, hamburgers, fries, and more.

Based on our panel's review, Nathan's Famous isn't the first-class dog they expected even though it claims numerous fans who would argue otherwise. A bit pricey, true, but many would say you're getting your money's worth.

Raechel Conover

Raechel Conover is a freelance writer whose work has appeared on Yahoo, blogs, and other websites. She's a self-confessed shopaholic and frugal mom, always scouring the sale and clearance racks for deals and taking full advantage of free community activities and events with her husband and young sons.

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