I've written before about my love for hot dogs. Growing up outside of Chicago, they were always a mainstay at barbeques and various joints in the suburbs or in the city at large. I think almost every grocery shopping trip I make, I always buy a package of hot dogs (and the Chicagoan in me misses being able to grab Vienna Beef so easily). 

The website Lawn Love, known for their many studies and domestic rankings of cities, compared the 200 biggest U.S. cities based on a variety of factors in order to look at which of them are the best/worst for hot dog lovers. They used nine overall elements, such as access to hot dog vendors, consumer ratings, topping contest awards, and whether or not the city itself hosts a hot dog eating competition.

Photo Credit: Ben6, Digital Team
Photo Credit: Ben6, Digital Team

This Iowa City was Ranked One of the "Wurst:"

Des Moines was ranked near the bottom in Lawn Love's survey as one of the worst cities for hot dog lovers. Coming in at #194/200, Des Moines had a dismal overall score of 4.19, with very weak access to hot dog vendors, a terrible consumer satisfaction ranking (190/200), and a popularity rank in the bottom third of the list.

Shockingly, Chicago Isn't Ranked #1:

Here's some analysis from Lawn Love, including a finding that will be the surprise of many: Chicago didn't come out on top as the best city for hot dog lovers:

Photo Credit: Michael Wels, Getty Images
Photo Credit: Michael Wels, Getty Images

Foodie rivals New York (No. 1) and Chicago (No. 2) finish at the top alongside other big cities like Los Angeles (No. 3) and Cincinnati (No. 6). These cities boil up high Access and Popularity, and offer original regional styles worth traveling to taste.


Several mid-sized cities disappoint, with San Bernardino, California (No. 195), and St. Paul, Minnesota (No. 197), charring to the bottom alongside Boise, Idaho, in last place. These cities land at the end among smaller suburban regions, with sparse options for grabbing a tasty frankfurter.

One Wisconsin City Lands in the Top 30:

Milwaukee polled favorably on this list, coming in 27 with a 22.14 overall score. The popularity of hot dogs in Milwaukee was shockingly #20 overall, with access and consumer satisfaction ranking in the 50s.

Visit Lawn Love's website to view the complete rankings of Best and Worst Cities for Hot Dog Lovers.

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