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History of the Corn Dog

Honky if You’re Corny

Well I might as well get this over with! I am in fact NOT a fan of corn dogs- odd, because I love hot dogs and I love corn… Something about the sweetness of the batter and the wiener-y flavor of the dog just doesn’t work for me. However, I can not deny that corn dogs are very popular at amusement parks, sporting events, and community events- pretty much any place where  you will find a hot dog stand.

History

Fletcher’s Corny Dogs

Photo: Wikipedia

Various sources on the web claim that Carl and Neil Fletcher invented the corny dog (sometimes they just credit Neil). According to Kristen Tribe’s article at americanprofile.com, the two brothers sold corn dogs “for the first time in 1942 at the State Fair of Texas.” The Fletcher’s Corny Dog concession continues to sell the original corn dog at the Texas state fair to this day, and it is still operated by the same family from their mobile kitchen.

Home Sweet Home can be Corny, Too

Take Home

State Fair, a brand owned by the Sara Lee Corporation, offers many different varieties of frozen corn dogs that you can enjoy at home: from the ‘Classic’ to the ‘Mini’ corn dog, and even ‘bacon-wrapped’ (that might actually convert me over to the corn dog camp, after all…).

Photo: statefair.com.

Do It Yourself

There are also recipes out there so you can make your own corn dogs. My favorite is at hillbillyhousewife.com. Note: You will need a deep fryer, so this may not be for everyone. If you don’t want to haul out your deep fryer, or you are a vegetarian that still craves those corn dogs you ate when you were a carnivore, there are also health-conscious versions of the corn dog online. Downhomedieting offers a recipe for a baked version (and you can use a soy dog if you don’t eat meat). There are even variations, where you cut up store-bought corn dogs and serve them with toppings as an appetizer!

Corn Fed

Like funnel cakes and regular hot dogs, corn dogs really belong in the special occasion category. The cheeky people at Foodreference.com describe them as “an excellent source of calories, fat, cholesterol and salt.”  They are not healthy and they should not be a part of your regular diet. This makes them a special treat! (Unless you’re like me, and you don’t like them. Don’t worry, there are always lots of other tasty treats to be found where ever you find corn dogs… kettle corn, mini donuts, chili fries, cotton candy… mmmmmmmm.)

If you’re not already craving a corn dog by this point, check out this corn dog eating contest video (it was a fundraiser for the United Way).

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4 Responses to “History of the Corn Dog”

  1. [...] first visit, welcome! Check out some of my other concession obsessions: the hot dog cart, the corn dog, funnel cakes, [...]

  2. [...] about it here at drivinganddining.com. Some of my guilty pleasures so far: giant pretzels, the corn dog, funnel cakes, and others. Stay tuned for more or subscribe and get new articles delivered [...]

  3. Kari says:

    Early in 1941, George and Vera Boyington’s dreams became reality when their ingenious Pronto Pup became a nation-wide hit, revolutionizing America’s fast-food industry and kicking off the franchise craze.

    The Pups are plump and tasty hot dogs on a stick, coated with the special batter and deep-fried to a golden brown. Most of us have sampled and savored Pronto Pups at carnivals, county fairs and even at main street vendors. An off-brand version is commonly known to the uninitiated as corndogs…

  4. pronto pup lover says:

    Mr. Boyington made his first pronto pup in the little town of Rockaway Beach, Oregon in 1930. Much earlier than the Fletcher’s claim they made their first corny dog. Texas like their stories. I agree with Kari. The true version don’t have much corn in them. Taste soooo much better, too.

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