Can You Eat Hot Dogs After Labor Day?

Many people think not.

Sweet Heat Hot Dogs CROP

Hot dogs have never been shy about stirring up trouble. They've long sparked venomous debates on which toppings should be allowed between the bun, from the chili-cheese and slaw dogs beloved down South to the pickle-studded dogs of the Midwest. (Fun fact: Mustard is the most universally popular hot dog topping.) Now, there's even talk about the proper time to consume the beloved meal-on-a-bun.

Hot dog season technically kicks off Memorial Day weekend and goes through the summer until Labor Day weekend. According to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council, Americans eat about 7 billion hot dogs between Memorial Day and Labor Day each year, and you'll find plenty of folks who believe that summer is the only time worthy of breaking out the frankfurters. It's nothing new to expect hot dogs to be a main event at the Memorial Day, Fourth of July, and Labor Day cookouts; but does the bun stop there?

While the NHDSC claims summer officially as "hot dog season," there's technically no strict ruling on the matter. Just like how you can get away with wearing white after Labor Day, it just requires the proper scenario. Tailgating comes to mind. For when the time comes to rebel, check out our Tastiest Potato Salad Recipes to pair with the grabbable delight.

As far as other hot dog etiquette, the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council names their own amusing guidelines, including to never use a cloth napkin when eating a hot dog (paper napkins only), to always use your hands to eat a hot dog (no forks and knives allowed), and perhaps the one thing that might give Southerners pause: to skip the thank you note after a hot dog cookout, since hot dogs are inherently unpretentious. We might have to argue that one.

There's no official ban on serving hot dogs after Labor Day, but why not enjoy them extra in the meantime?

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