Los Angeles Pink’s Chili Hot Dogs

Ingredients for a Chili Dog

In Hollywood, there is really only once place to go if you’re craving arguably the best chili dogs in the west- Pink’s. Betty Pink opened her roadside shack in 1939 selling chili with “fixins'”. Soon after, she started selling snappy hot dogs in steamed buns and when she combined them with her chili, the west coast chili dog began its journey to stardom. A similar version called a “Coney” is served in the Midwest.

The restaurant itself is self-service with no waiters. Customers place their orders at a the outdoor counter and pay for their order before picking up their food and beverages and gig out back to look for a table. Since the `30s, famous stars of movies, TV, music, and comedy would wait in long lines to get a chili dog and their picture on the wall. The hundreds of signed photos covering the walls attest to this.

Pink’s Chili Dogs

This chili is about as close to the actual Pink's as you can get. What makes it unique is its texture and flavor that comes from the post-depression era practice of keeping costs down by "stretching" the meat by using fattier meat, a flour binder, and stock. Cooking this chili slowly and then adding it to a all-beef hot dog on a steamed bun, and topping it with mustard, chopped onions, and shredded cheese will give you the Pink's experience albeit short a few Hollywood stars and the whole line-waiting thing.
3 from 3 votes
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Course: Lunch, Main Course, Snack
Cuisine: American, American West Coast, North American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 hours 35 minutes
Total Time: 5 hours 45 minutes
Servings: 6
Author: My Hungry Traveler


  • Food processor
  • Medium saucepan


  • 1 lb Ground beef (80% lean)
  • 1 large Carrot, peeled and chopped into tiny flakes in the food processor
  • ½ cup Beef broth
  • ½ cup Water
  • 2 tbsp Chili powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp Each: paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper
  • tsp Cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp Masa flour (corn)
  • 4 tbsp All-purpose flour


  • 6 long All-beef hot dogs with casings
  • 6 Hot dog buns
  • ½ medium Onion, chopped
  • 1 cup Shredded cheddar cheese


Make Chili

  • Chop carrot into tiny flakes in a food processor.
  • Brown ground beef in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, breaking up meat. When meat begins to brown, add carrots and cook 2 more minutes. Add in broth, and seasonings. Cook for about 15 minutes.
    Add flour in tablespoon increments, stirring between each addition. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring, for 15 minutes. Turn up heat to high and mix in the masa flour dissolved in ½ cup water. Cook 5 minute more, stirring. Remove from heat, cover, and let rest for 20 minutes to thicken.

Assemble Chili Dogs

  • Fry hot dogs and ⅛ cup water for 8 minutes in a covered frying pan over medium heat. Remove cover and cook a little more to brown hot dogs.
    Microwave hot dog buns in their bag for 20 to 30 seconds. Place a dog in a bun, cover with a little mustard, a thick line of chili sauce covered by shredded cheese and some diced fresh onions. A little sauerkraut added before the chili never hurt anyone.


Calories: 433kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 910mg | Potassium: 397mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 3006IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 228mg | Iron: 4mg

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