Have you heard about my Whole30-, keto-, and paleo-friendly version of Sonoran hot dogs, those crispy bacon-wrapped hot dogs smothered with your favorite Mexican-inspired toppings? You can make this simple version at home and you won’t even miss the bun!

An overhead shot of Whole30, keto, and paleo Sonoran hot dogs wrapped in lettuce and topped with salsa.

I first encountered these Mexican-inspired bacon-wrapped hot dogs as a college freshman wandering around San Francisco’s Mission District. Or rather, my nose found them. I followed the intoxicating scent of sizzling bacon, hot dogs, grilled peppers and onions to a friendly sidewalk vendor selling Sonoran hot dogs. After tasting one, I was hooked. I still gaze longingly at them whenever I venture through the Mission.

What is a Sonoran Hot Dog?

A Sonoran hot dog is a bacon-wrapped hot dog that’s typically served in a chubby baguette roll called a bolillo and topped with condiments like grilled onions and peppers, pinto beans, salsa, and a drizzle of mayonnaise. According to Wikipedia, it originated in the Mexican state of Sonora and is a regionally popular hot dog variation in parts of Arizona, Southern California, and the San Francisco Bay Area. Its popularity isn’t surprising—you can’t possibly go wrong combining smoky bacon-wrapped hot dogs and your favorite Mexican toppings!

How are these Sonoran Hot Dogs Whole30-compatible?

To make Sonoran hot dogs Whole30-compliant, you gotta ditch the bun and beans and make sure that all the meat and toppings are sugar-free, grain-free, dairy-free, and junk-free. Luckily, you can buy Whole30-friendly hot dogs and bacon at most grocery stores—some compliant brands include Applegate, Wellshire Farms, and Pederson’s Family Farms. Always read the ingredients label to double-check!

The bollilo is easily replaced with lettuce leaves. You can even serve the bacon-wrapped hot dog on a bed of greens to make a hearty Mexican salad!

Wrap that bacon tight!

The key to a great Sonoran hot dog is to wrap a piece of bacon tightly in a single layer around the dog. If you have a choice, try to avoid thick-cut bacon because it takes longer to cook and it doesn’t stay in place as well as thinner strips of bacon. Also, remember to tuck the ends of the bacon as you wrap it snugly around the frankfurter so it won’t unravel as you fry it.

Use a large skillet!

The secret to frying the bacon-wrapped hot dogs is to sear them in a skillet because the direct contact with a flat hot surface gets the bacon crispy and helps it adhere around the frankfurter. I’ve tried roasting these porktastic dogs on a sheet pan in the oven and cooking them on the grill outside, but the bacon invariably curls up and falls off the hot dog.

Also, make sure the skillet is large enough to accommodate the hot dogs as well as the peppers and onions. If the hot dogs and vegetables are crowded into a small pan, the veggies and bacon will steam and won’t brown well. Don’t have a large pan? Cook the hot dogs first and then add the peppers and onions to the empty skillet.

Ingredients

  • Bacon slices, sugar-free if doing a Whole30
  • Hot dogs, sugar-free if doing a Whole30
  • Onion
  • Red Bell Pepper
  • Diamond Crystal kosher salt
  • Butter lettuce leaves
  • Pico de gallo or your favorite salsa
  • Hass avocado

How to make Sonoran Hot Dogs

Grab a strip of bacon for each hot dog and wrap one around each hot dog in a single layer…

A person wrapping a piece of bacon around a hot dog in a single layer.

…tucking the end pieces so the bacon strips don’t unravel.

Wrapping a piece of bacon around a hot dog to make Whole30, keto, and paleo Sonoran hot dogs and tucking the ends of the bacon under the rest of the bacon to keep it in place.

Heat a 12-inch skillet on medium heat. When it’s hot, place the four bacon-wrapped hot dogs in a single layer in the middle of the skillet.

Four bacon-wrapped hot dogs are placed in the middle of a stainless steel skillet to make Sonoran hot dogs.

Fry the hot dogs undisturbed until the bacon is browned on one side. Then, flip the hot dogs over and fry until browned on the other side.

A pair of tongs are flipping golden brown bacon-wrapped Sonoran hot dogs in a large stainless steel skillet.

Add the onions and peppers around the hot dogs on the edges and sprinkle salt on the vegetables.

An overhead shot of a skillet with bacon-wrapped Mexican hot dogs surrounded by sliced onions and red and yellow bell peppers. A hand above is sprinkling salt on the vegetables.

Continue browning the Sonoran hot dogs and stir the peppers and onions to ensure even cooking.

A shot of a skillet with browned bacon-wrapped Sonoran hot dogs with cooked sliced onions and peppers surrounding it. Tongs are moving the vegetables in the pan to cook them evenly.

The dish is ready when the bacon-wrapped hotdogs are browned on all sides and the peppers and onions are tender and caramelized.

An overhead shot of paleo, keto, and Whole30 Sonoran hot dogs in a skillet with sliced onion and red and yellow bell peppers.

Serve the hot dogs and sautéed peppers and onions with butter lettuce leaves…

A shot of a skillet filled with Sonoran hot dogs and fried onions and peppers. Next to it are plates filled with avocado and salsa.

…so that everyone can top each lettuce-wrapped Sonoran hot dog with pico de gallo and sliced avocado if desired!

A brown plate with three lettuce-wrapped bacon-wrapped Sonoran hot dogs topped with salsa, sliced avocado, peppers, and onions.

Looking for more recipe ideas? Head on over to my Recipe Index. You’ll also find exclusive recipes on my iPhone and iPad app, and in my cookbooks, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2013), Ready or Not! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2017), and Nom Nom Paleo: Let’s Go! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2022).


Sonoran Hot Dogs (Paleo, Whole30, Keto)

4.91 from 11 votes
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Servings 4
Here's a Whole30-, keto-, and paleo-friendly version of Sonoran hot dogs, crispy bacon-wrapped hot dogs smothered with your favorite Mexican-inspired toppings!

Ingredients 
 

  • 4 bacon slices sugar-free if doing a Whole30
  • 4 hot dogs sugar-free if doing a Whole30
  • 1 large onion thinly sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper or other color, thinly sliced
  • Diamond Crystal kosher salt 
  • 8 butter lettuce leaves
  • ½ cup pico de gallo or your favorite salsa
  • 1 large Hass avocado peeled and thinly sliced

Instructions 

  • Grab a strip of bacon for each hot dog and wrap one around each hot dog in a single layer, tucking the end pieces so the bacon strips don’t unravel.
  • Heat a 12-inch skillet on medium heat. When it’s hot, place the four bacon-wrapped hot dogs in a single layer in the middle of the skillet.
  • Fry the hot dogs undisturbed until the bacon is browned on one side. Then, flip the hot dogs over and fry until browned on the other side.
  • Add the onions and peppers around the hot dogs on the edges and sprinkle salt on the vegetables.
  • Continue browning the Sonoran hot dogs and stir the peppers and onions to ensure even cooking. The dish is ready when the bacon-wrapped hotdogs are browned on all sides and the peppers and onions are tender and caramelized.
  • Serve the hot dogs and sautéed peppers and onions with butter lettuce leaves so that everyone can top each lettuce-wrapped Sonoran hot dog with pico de gallo and sliced avocado if desired.

Video

Notes

Wrap that bacon tight! The key to a great Sonoran hot dog is to wrap a piece of bacon tightly in a single layer around the dog. If you have a choice, try to avoid thick-cut bacon because it takes longer to cook and it doesn’t stay in place as well as thinner strips of bacon. Also, remember to tuck the ends of the bacon as you wrap it snugly around the frankfurter so it won’t unravel as you fry it.

Nutrition

Calories: 263kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 19g | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 6g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Like this? Leave a comment below!

About Michelle Tam

Hello! My name is Michelle Tam, and I love to eat. I think about food all the time. It borders on obsession. I’ve always loved the sights and smells of the kitchen. My mother was (and is) an excellent cook, and as a kid, I was her little shadow as she prepared supper each night. From her, I gained a deep, abiding love for magically transforming pantry items into mouth-watering family meals.

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7 Comments

  1. I love your recipes! I’m trying this recipe tonight. I’m having trouble keeping the bacon wrapped around the hot dog. Do you have any helpful suggestions.

  2. Whole30 Day 1. My partner’s second attempt and my third Whole30. This recipe was top of our list. Just made it and love it! I used all bell pepper colors each one adds to the fajita veggies. Thank you for this one!

  3. Thanks for a delicious recipe! My family loved it. We couldn’t find thin bacon so just cooked it and added along side.

  4. I did not expect to see a hot dog recipe on Nom Nom Paleo…

    But I’m glad I did! Looks da bomb Michelle!

  5. I have been doing my hot dogs similar to this my entire life but I cut the onions and bell peppers in cubes for easier eating and I put a small toothpick at each end of the bacon as I use my outdoor grill for the hot dogs. You can also add shredded cheese (if your diet allows) and potato chips for a crunchy effect. You can make a pink sauce by mixing ketchup and mayo together and pour on top (add sriracha if you want a bit of a kick). Great easy meal!

  6. 5 stars
    Finally got around to making these after getting butter lettuce and grass fed sugar free hot dogs in my Imperfect Foods box. Turned out delicious. Only problem I had was how messy they were! Thinking my lettuce leaves were too small. But wonderful recipe!

  7. 5 stars
    Eating them right now! Nom nom nom yum yum yum! I made them after a looonnggg 12 hour shift. Just the right amount of protein, fat, crunch and savory. Easy to make when all you really want to do is rest after a long work day! Great recipie and restored my childhood love of hot dogs – 🤷🏾‍♀️. Thank you 🙏🏿