Hot dog buns recipe from scratch (makes 6) - Dessert for Two (2024)

Hot dog buns recipe is here to save the day when you're out of buns and have leftover hot dogs from the pack! This recipe makes just 6 hot dog buns, and they're fluffy brioche style, too! You will love this recipe!

Hot dog buns recipe from scratch (makes 6) - Dessert for Two (1)

Hot dog buns recipe:

A small batch of hot dog buns is just what I need almost every weekend. My family and I live in a fun neighborhood with lots of mini parks with places to socialize and grill out with other neighbors. My daughter lives for Saturday nights when we all grill hot dogs and roast marshmallows for s'mores, because we let the kids run around and play outside until they nearly fall asleep.

Last weekend, we were out until nearly 11pm. I carried Camille to bed, and she was asleep before I even left her room, hah!

I feel like these are the true moments of childhood--the freedom to run around barefoot and just play. However, I realize that my acceptance is largely due to the fact that Camille sleeps 11 hours after she goes to sleep, no matter how late it is. I'm not faced with a 6am wakeup after one of these nights, hah! Oh, but the baby gets up at 6:00, so a second cup of coffee it is!

These neighborly gatherings are the biggest thing I'm missing during our current social distancing efforts. This small hot dog buns recipe fills the void for us--it's just enough for our small family grill-out.

Small batch hot dog buns:

If you're familiar with my small batch hamburger buns, you'll recognize the similarity with this recipe. The dough balls are divided into slightly smaller pieces, because we're making 6 hot dog buns instead of 4 hamburger buns. To achieve this, I added an extra one-quarter cup of flour to make a slightly stiffer dough.

With hamburger buns, we're okay with them spreading out as they rise, so that they fit the burger patty. But with hot dog buns, I need the little lumps to hold their shape a little better. The extra flour helps them spread slowly into the true hot dog shape!

Hot dog buns recipe from scratch (makes 6) - Dessert for Two (2)

This recipe is for soft and fluffy brioche buns, and as such, you'll notice a few things different than other recipes. Brioche dough is classified as an 'enriched dough,' because it is enriched with eggs and milk. The eggs make the dough super rich, and the milk makes the dough super soft. Once you've had brioche buns, I don't think you'll go back to the cotton-y counterparts at the grocery store!

To make whole wheat buns:

I also want to address that you can make this recipe with some whole wheat flour, if you like! To incorporate a little whole wheat flour, replace ½ cup of all-purpose flour with whole wheat. That is the only way I have tested this recipe.

I have not tested this recipe with 100% whole wheat flour, because baking with all whole grain flour is totally different than baking with a portion of it. True whole grain breads often need something acidic to soften the dough, something like orange juice with soften and tenderize the dough.

I repeat: my recipe below is for either 100% all-purpose flour -OR- up to ½ cup of whole wheat flour substituted. Anything higher than ½ cup substituted requires a completely different approach. As for me, I'm happy with just a small portion of the flour being whole grain. This way we don't sacrifice softness and fluffiness of the dough, because what is a hot dog without a fluffy soft bun?

Can you see the cottony-soft pillow-like texture of these buns below?

Hot dog buns recipe from scratch (makes 6) - Dessert for Two (3)

How to make hot dog buns from scratch:

Okay, I'm going to give you a little game plan to get these buns straight from the oven to your plate.

  1. First, scald this milk. Scalding involves bringing the milk to a brief simmer just to denature the proteins in the milk. Remove from heat and let cool to yeast-friendly temperature. Adding the water as it cools helps it cool down to 105-degrees F. Finally, bloom the yeast in this mixture with just a pinch of sugar.
  2. Once the mixture is bloomed and ready, it's time to stir in the butter and egg.
  3. I knead the dough in a mini stand mixer because it's just easier! Please note that because this is a small-batch recipe, a regular full-size stand mixer is too big!
  4. Add flour(s), and knead the dough for 10 minutes. It will be sticky.
  5. Let the dough rise in a well-oiled bowl until doubled--this can take up to 2 hours at room temperature OR just 1 hour on the proof setting in the oven. You're looking for the dough to double in bulk; don't watch the clock, watch the dough!
  6. Using 73-74 gram dough chunks, tuck the seams of the dough under until you have a smooth ball. Then, roll it between your hands to make a hot dog bun log!
  7. Let the buns rise for another hour or so--look at the buns (see the photo below), and when they look like full-size buns, they're ready to bake. Brush the buns with beaten egg yolk--this helps them turn golden brown while baking.

Hot dog buns recipe from scratch (makes 6) - Dessert for Two (4)

Please note that depending on the type of hot dog buns you're making (all-purpose flour or partial whole wheat), the dough ball weight varies. For 100% all-purpose flour buns, the dough ball should weight between 73 and 74 grams.

For buns made with up to ½ cup of whole wheat flour, the weight for each bun will be about 71 grams. As to why the photo has 90 grams showing on the scale, I know not, hah! This was before I pinched off a chunk of the dough to bring it down to the proper amount, I think.

Hot dog buns recipe from scratch (makes 6) - Dessert for Two (5)

When making homemade buns, in order to have a smooth surface, you need to do this weird little trick: Once you grab a dough ball, pull and stretch to make the top surface smooth, and then tuck all ends underneath. In the photo, you can see the ends all pulled together, while the top surface (touching my hand) is smooth.

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The photo above is what the dough looks like when it's ready to bake. See how the buns have risen and are roughly the size you need for a hot dog? They will rise and expand slightly more in the oven, but not much. At this point, it's time to brush with beaten egg yolk and bake.

I hope this small batch hot dog buns recipe comes in handy when using the rest of the hot dogs, or anytime you're having a small backyard grill out.

Hot dog buns recipe from scratch (makes 6) - Dessert for Two (7)

They look like this, but they easily break apart for serving. Enjoy!

Yield: 6

Hot Dog Buns Recipe

Hot dog buns recipe from scratch (makes 6) - Dessert for Two (8)

Small batch hot dog buns recipe; makes 6 buns.

Prep Time3 hours

Cook Time18 minutes

Additional Time3 hours

Total Time6 hours 18 minutes


  • ½ cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour*
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar


1. In a small saucepan, scald the milk (Scalding is heating until small bubbles form around the edges of the pan and steam rises from the surface, but never boiling).

2. Remove the milk from the heat, and then add the water. Stir, and let sit until it registers about 105° F.

3. Once the milk-water mixture is 105° F, stir in the yeast and a pinch of the sugar (not the tablespoon of sugar--save that for later). Let the yeast mixture bloom, about 5 minutes. It should be foamy on the surface.

4. To the milk and yeast mixture, stir in the butter and egg. (Don't worry if the butter doesn't melt all the way immediately).

5. In a mini stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, add the liquid ingredients, and beat briefly to combine.

6. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour with the salt and tablespoon of sugar.

7. While the mixer is running, add the dry ingredients in two batches.
Crank the mixer to medium-high, and knead for 8-10 minutes. The dough will be sticky.

8. Place the dough in a well-oiled bowl, turning it to coat with oil. Cover loosely with plastic wrap, and then let rise in a warm place for about 2 hours, or until doubled. (Rising time is dependent on the temperature of the room; let rise until the dough is doubled).

9. Punch the dough down very well, and gather it into a ball.
Weigh the dough, and divide it by 6--each dough ball should be between 73 and 74 grams.

10. Roll each dough piece into a ball, and then use your fingers to pinch the edges under until the seam is on the bottom (see photo for reference). Then, roll the dough between your hands to make a log shape about 4" long.

11. Repeat with the other 5 pieces of dough.

12. Place the 6 dough sticks in a 9x13" pan lined with parchment paper, and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Space the dough logs about an inch apart--they will rise and touch each other slightly (see photos for reference). Cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm place to rise for 1 hour. They will be puffy and almost be full-size when ready.

13. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375. Finally, make the topping: whisk the egg yolk with a splash of water. Brush generously on each bun, covering the entire surface, and bake for 16-19 minutes, until deeply golden brown.


*You may sub in ½ cup of whole wheat flour, max for this recipe. Any higher than ½ cup of whole wehat flour, I can't guarantee the recipe will result in light and fluffy buns.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving:Calories: 176Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 38mgSodium: 22mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 6g

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Hot dog buns recipe from scratch (makes 6) - Dessert for Two (2024)


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