Seattle-style hot dog
Seattle Dog from food cart outside T-Mobile Park
Alternative names
TypeHot dog
Place of originUnited States
Region or stateSeattle
Associated cuisineStreet food
Created by
  • Hadley Long
  • Hadley's Bagel Dogs[2]
Main ingredientsCream cheese, hot dog, bun (originally a bialy roll)
VariationsSautéed onions

A Seattle-style hot dog, locally referred to as a Seattle Dog, is a hot dog served in a bun slathered with cream cheese. In Seattle the dogs are sold from food carts, especially outside stadiums on game day and as a late-night meal outside the city's music venues.


The Seattle-style hot dog was invented in 1989 in the Pioneer Square neighborhood by Hadley Long, a vegetarian food vendor from Ohio, who operated a bagel cart on the sidewalk between the Central Saloon and J&M Cafe and Cardroom.[3][2][4] Long originally served only vegetarian bagels and toppings from his cart, but soon gave in to late-night demand for meat by adding hot dogs to his existing bagels and cream cheese.[3] He sourced bialy-style buns from the Bagel Deli on Capitol Hill and spread both sides with cream cheese before adding a hot dog, naming his new recipe and cart Hadley's Bagel Dogs.[1][2]

Seattle Dogs increased in popularity at bars and music venues during the grunge movement of the 1990s. In 1999, The Stranger favorably reviewed the hot dog stand outside The Showbox, seemingly the first mention of cream cheese hot dogs by local media.[5][6][3]

Seattle-style hot dogs are now often sold at bars and their surrounding street vendors at night.[7][6][8] They are also available at and near the city's sporting venues.[9] A vendor told Seattle Weekly that he believed large crowds visiting stands outside of Safeco Field during the Seattle Mariners 2001 116–46 season was "the big boom" for the recipe.[3]

In Everett, a cart began selling Seattle-style dogs outside Comcast Arena in 2009.[10] The Seattle Mariners began serving Seattle Dogs at the Hit it Here Café inside Safeco Field during the 2010 season.[9]

James Beard Award-winning Seattle chef Renee Erickson features an $18 hot dog on the menu of the Deep Dive bar at the Amazon Spheres.[11] The gourmet take on the Seattle Dog is dressed with whipped cream cheese, pickled jalapeños, pickled red onions, and pink salmon roe caviar.[11]


The meat is typically grilled and the hoagie roll or bun is usually toasted.

The use of cream cheese defines the Seattle-style hot dog. Sellers sometimes use pistol-grip sauce dispensers to quickly add the thick cream cheese. The owner of Dante's Inferno Dogs says that he was the first to introduce their use.[3]

Grilled onions are one of the most popular additions.[12] Other toppings include jalapeños and other peppers, sauerkraut or grilled cabbage, and scallions. Condiments such as mustard (American yellow or spicy brown), barbecue sauce, and Sriracha sauce are favorites, while ketchup is used less often.[13]

See also


  1. ^ a b Tizon, Alex (November 7, 1994). "Hot Dog! Dome Reopening Brings Some Business Back". The Seattle Times. p. B6. Pioneer Square merchants like Hadley Long, who runs a hot-dog stand on First Avenue South. 'They're not hot dogs, they're bagel dogs,' Long will tell you. Whatever they are, he sold a lot of them yesterday.
  2. ^ a b c d de Luna, Ruby; Boiko-Weyrauch, Anna (July 5, 2018). "POLAROIDS: How Seattle's signature hot dog got its cream cheese". KUOW-FM. Retrieved April 28, 2024. The Seattle dog: grilled onions and cream cheese. How did this become a thing?
  3. ^ a b c d e Raskin, Hanna (August 29, 2012). "Streets of Philadelphia — An oral history of Seattle's signature nocturnal sidewalk dish: the cream-cheese hot dog". Seattle Weekly. Vol. 37, no. 35. pp. 1, 11–15. Archived from the original on April 29, 2024. Retrieved September 3, 2012. Slathering cream cheese on hot dogs is a notion that rose from the streets, not recipe books.
  4. ^ Varriano, Jackie (July 1, 2022). "What makes the perfect Seattle dog? The creator and 4 other hot dog experts weigh in". The Seattle Times. Retrieved May 2, 2023.
  5. ^ Vogel, Traci (March 18, 1999). "Hot Diggity!". The Stranger. Retrieved April 29, 2024. in front of the Showbox [...] Not only that, but they make something which, when I first heard it described, sounded repulsive, but turned out to be sublime (and nothing endears me more to food than this turn of events): the cream cheese hot dog. This hot dog, nicely cooked, appears in a crispy bun smeared with cream cheese
  6. ^ a b Gilovich, Paula; Vogel, Traci (2001). "Restaurants — Quick Fix — Hot Dog Stands". The Stranger Guide to Seattle: The City's Smartest, Pickiest, Most Obsessive Urban Manual. Seattle: Sasquatch Books. pp. 54–55. ISBN 978-1-57061-256-5. Not only that, but they make something which, when first described, sounds repulsive, but turns out to be sublime: the cream cheese hot dog.
  7. ^ Hobart, Erica (February 12, 2010). "Are Cream Cheese Hot Dogs Really a Seattle Thing?". Seattle Weekly. Archived from the original on February 15, 2010. Retrieved October 6, 2011.
  8. ^ Goode, J.J. (August 14, 2023). "A Field Guide to the Great Hot Dogs of America". The New York Times. Archived from the original on August 14, 2023. Retrieved August 14, 2023. Outsiders sometimes wince at the thought of Seattle Dogs. Even some locals consider them fit only for a post-boozing binge. Yet there they are, cream cheese-slathered buns hosting hot dogs.
  9. ^ a b Johns, Greg (April 11, 2010). "Lots of New Food Items on Safeco Field Menu". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Archived from the original on May 14, 2013. Retrieved October 6, 2011. The 'Seattle Dog' is a new item available at Safeco Field's Hit it Here Café, featuring an all-beef Cloverdale dog with cream cheese on a pretzel bun.
  10. ^ Drachman, Julia (August 3, 2009). "New hot dog stand parks itself outside Comcast Arena". The Everett Herald. Archived from the original on August 31, 2009. Retrieved August 31, 2009. 'We have a huge amount of variety in our condiments. We sell all kinds of hot dogs: Chicago-style, New York-style, and Seattle-style.' Seattle-style, by the way, is served with cream cheese and peppers.
  11. ^ a b Clement, Bethany Jean; Vinh, Tan (February 22, 2019). "What to make of Renee Erickson's new restaurant and bar in the Amazon Spheres?". The Seattle Times. Retrieved April 29, 2024. Then there was the $18 hot dog. Clearly meant as tech-bro bait, its overcomplications — a richie-rich Seattle dog, with whipped cream cheese, pickled jalapeños and red onions, topped with salmon roe
  12. ^ Krall, Hawk (October 2, 2009). "Hot Dog Of The Week: Seattle Style". Serious Eats. Archived from the original on October 6, 2009. Retrieved April 29, 2024. Served at carts and trucks all over the city, popular for a quick lunch or after the bars at 2 a.m., the Seattle Style hot dog is a wiener or Polish sausage grilled and often split (to hold more toppings?) then jammed into a cream cheese slathered toasted bun.
  13. ^ Belle, Rachel (August 31, 2012). "Cream Cheese + Hot Dog: The History Behind the Seattle Dog". MYNorthwest | KIRO-FM. Archived from the original on September 10, 2012. Retrieved September 16, 2012. The Seattle dog is a local phenomenon [...] But where did it come from? Seattle Weekly's restaurant critic, Hanna Raskin, found out.