Taco Dogs – A Mid-Century Recipe Test

Posted on Jul 10 2013 - 6:49am by RetroRuth

A lot of crazy mid-century recipes are tested here, and of those some of the favorite ones are of the “mix-em-up” variety. Canned spaghetti on subs. Baked beans in gelatin. Ketchup and tuna on pizza. So when I was sorting through some newspaper clippings from the 1960’s and came across this idea for a “teen party”, I knew we would have to try it.

I give you, Taco Dogs.


Yes, that is a hot dog in a taco shell.

4.0 from 1 reviews
Taco Dogs
A hot dog in a taco shell!
  • Taco sauce
  • 12 skinless frankfurters
  • 12 taco shells
  • 1½ cups shredded lettuce
  • 1½ cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1½ cups chopped tomato
  1. To assemble taco dogs, place skinless frankfurter in taco shell; top with sauce for tacos, shredded lettuce, cheese and chopped tomato.



In this recipe’s defense, it WAS incredibly easy to put together, so I can see the appeal for a kid’s party. This seriously took me 5 minutes to make. The most time-consuming thing was waiting for the oven to pre-heat to warm up the taco shells.


Also, this totally looks like kid food. Hot dogs and tacos together? Gold.

Tom TastingIMG_2071

“How is it? Hot-dog-tastic?”

“It’s bland.”

“I’ll bet.”

“One bite and I’m south of the border. Canada’s border.”


“Seriously though, this thing is the most 1950’s-ish thing we’ve made in a long time.”

The Verdict: It’s a hot dog. In a taco shell.

From The Tasting Notes:

Weird and bland, but edible. You expect a lot of things when you bite into a taco shell, but not a hot dog. It was also ridiculous to eat, and the taco shell crumbled and bit the dust long before we were finished eating the taco dog. It would have been better to just put a hot dog in a bun and pile seasoned taco meat, chips and cheese on it. And yet, this recipe is still around today. And here. Aaaaand here.

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I love everything retro, vintage, mid-century, kitsch and all things atomic! A 21st century housewife just trying to fit in...to the 50's. I have a passion for vintage recipes and an enormous vintage cookbook collection that I keep testing, even though by now I should know better. Creator of Mid-Century Menu (www.midcenturymenu.com), No Pattern Required (www.nopatternrequired.com), and I Ate The 80's (www.iatethe80s.com).

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12 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Cristina July 10, 2013 at 9:25 am - Reply

    Ruth, I’m sure if you added some sort of sauce on it, it might taste much better..since there is no sauce to give it some taste it is bland and im sure dry. I should try it but with some sort of sauce!

  2. veg-o-matic July 10, 2013 at 10:44 am - Reply

    I like your idea of putting taco meat and chips on a hot dog in a bun. Heck, it’d probably be even better without the hot dog!

  3. Sara In AZ July 10, 2013 at 1:11 pm - Reply

    Oh God…..a hot dog IN a taco shell!?! I’m sorry, but that is just wrong on so many levels!!!!!!!

  4. Anonypilgrim July 10, 2013 at 3:48 pm - Reply

    Let me share with you the modern (and tasty) version of this. Get a cheddarwurst, lay it in the middle of a tortilla, cover with a slice of cheese. Then, microwave and eat. Very yummy. I recommend microwaving until the ends of the dog burst, but you can certainly just hot up.

  5. David July 10, 2013 at 4:10 pm - Reply

    This is kind of funny to me, because Monday night I made just the opposite — seasoned taco meat in hot dog buns, topped with cheese, lettuce, and tomatoes! I’m surprised the author didn’t recommend a salsa or cheese sauce with this. This would be better with chili and nacho cheese sauce and salsa, with onions thrown on.

  6. flurrious July 10, 2013 at 4:44 pm - Reply

    I am in love with how sad this recipe is. It might have been party food in the 1960s, but now it’s food for people who will always live alone.

  7. Emily July 10, 2013 at 5:53 pm - Reply

    This just makes me laugh! Maybe if the hot dog was split in half lengthwise and then put in the shell it would hold together better?
    I don’t often comment but I just love this blog so much! Thanks!

  8. Tipsykit July 11, 2013 at 2:27 am - Reply

    This might be a silly question, but….you *did* heat up the hot dog first, yes? Because the recipe doesn’t mention it. Eek. I think that maybe if the hot dog was diced and mixed with taco sauce, maybe it would….no, it would still be gross. However, I could get behind the idea of topping a hot dog in a BUN with taco meat. Sorta like a chili dog. Come to think of it, I actually made that once when my husband wanted me to make him a chili dog for dinner and I just heated up leftover taco meat, put it on a hotdog, and told him it was chili. He didn’t even notice the difference.

  9. Seth July 18, 2013 at 2:50 pm - Reply

    If you want to try a tastier taco you might try fried tacos. My mother grew up in New Mexico in the 30s and 40s and learned to make tacos this way. One dozen corn tortillas. One pound ground beef. Put a spoon of raw beef on each tortilla and pat into a half moon shape with the flat side in the center. Heat up a skillet with a 1/4 inch of oil on medium heat. Lightly pinch together the outside edges of one filled tortilla, set the rounded edge in the skillet to soften, then flop over to one side. As that sizzles, do a couple more. After a couple minutes, flip them all over to the second side. After 5 minutes total, the meat should be cooked through and the tortillas crispy and chewy, set on a plate with paper towels in a warm oven, and continue until all are done. Serve with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, salsa, canned diced green chilies, olives etc.

    By the early 70s when even my North Dakota grocery stores carried taco shells, mom switched to the taco shell and “seasoned taco meat” thing. Not nearly as good. Evey once in a while I make them the old way for a hit of nostalgic greasy goodness.

  10. H1978 April 3, 2014 at 11:02 pm - Reply

    My mom used to make “chihuahuas” when I was a kid – hot dog in a soft corn tortilla with taco sauce and cheddar cheese, cooked in the microwave until the hot dog started to curl and the cheese was bubbly. Muy delicioso, no?

  11. Meaghen January 18, 2015 at 12:48 pm - Reply

    One of the things my grandmother would give me for lunch when I stayed with her was hot dog and cheese microwaved in a soft tortilla. For a kid, this wasn’t a bad thing.

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