If you steam hot dog buns before serving them with hot dogs, it makes a huge difference in how the dish tastes. It gives the right temperature and texture to the experience, improving on the conventional dish that’s often served as a warm hot dog on a cold bun.
I’ll show you how to steam hot dog buns in a way that ensures they don’t get tough or crispy or dry out too much. There’s a lot that goes into preparing a hot dog bun the right way so that it complements the dog rather than detracts from it.
You don’t want the hot dog bun to be distracting or unpalatable. Instead, it should pair with the hotdog perfectly, enhancing the meal.
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Consider the Bun
It starts by choosing the right kind of hot dog bun.
Not all of them can handle being steamed, so you’ll want to choose hot dog buns that you know will work well for this dish after they’ve been steamed and ones that will not dry out, turn soggy, or crumble apart.
There are two ways you can tell if a hot dog bun will work fairly well for a steamer. You can look for a denser, thicker buns. These can handle steaming process pretty well and hold up to the rigors of steaming and still have the right texture when they’re finished.
The second option is to read some customer reviews and find out which buns managed to steam well. That’s a good way to minimize your risk of potentially buying buns that don’t work out very well for you.
How to Steam Hot Dog Buns at Home
It’s easiest to use a steamer that has a bun compartment to make this work. There’s probably no simpler way to steam buns for a large group of people at once than to use a steamer. You’ll be able to make them in large batches so that the buns are ready very quickly.
Start by putting the buns in the steamer’s top rack.
You can follow the machine instructions to regulate the heat. You don’t want your buns to get too wet or soft, so make sure you are using the humidity control to keep that moderated. If you’re following the instructions for your specific steamer, you shouldn’t have any trouble steaming the buns this way.
Each steamer might be a little bit different, so if you’re wondering how long the steam hot dog buns for in the steamer, that will depend on which model you have.
How to Steam Hot Dog Buns in Microwave
Not everybody has a steamer on hand that they can use, but you don’t have to suffer through cold hot dog buns without one. So, how to steam hot dog buns without a steamer?
You can use your microwave.
Using a microwave safe bowl, heat 50 milliliters of water in the microwave for a minute. Place two paper towel sheets on a plate, and place your buns on top of the towels.
Then, cover the buns with a lightly dampened paper towel. When heating more than one bun, ensure that there’s a little space between the buns for proper cooking.
The plate of buns and the bowl of water should microwave together for 10 seconds. Then, allow them to rest inside the microwave for a few seconds before flipping the buns over and heating them again together for 10 more seconds.
Be sure to use a hot pad or oven mitt to take the plate out of the microwave.
How to Steam Buns on the Stovetop
There are a number of other ways you can steam buns, and one of the better alternatives to the microwave or the steamer is your stove top. I’ll show you how to do this, though you should keep in mind that the microwave method is a little simpler and more foolproof.
Once again, make sure you’re using the right kind of buns. Thicker, denser buns tend to steam better. Start by boiling 70 millimeters of water high heat in a pot. You’ll want to use a colander or something else that can work as a steamer replacement for this method.
Place that over the pot of water and make sure that your water isn’t so high in the pot that it starts to seep through the holes and wet the buns. That could make them soggy and unappealing.
Simply cook the buns like this until they are fully steamed. If you want the interior of the buns to get warm, you can slice them open and face them down toward the steam.
You shouldn’t cover your steamer/colander, as that can create condensation under the lid that falls down onto the buns and makes them soggy.
You could use something other than a colander, like an oven safe bowl. The method is a little different, and you’ll want to put the bowl in the pot of water upside down and then rest the plate of buns on it.
Some people even use chopsticks to steam buns on the stove top. This method requires that you lay the chopsticks across the top of the pot and then rest your buns on top of them.
Remember to face the buns down and cut them open so that the interior steams as well.
There are other ways you can make steamed hot dog buns without even using a steamer. These are probably the simplest, though, using equipment and tools you probably have already in your kitchen.
The steamer is the most effective and ensures you get that properly steamed hotdog bun experience, but it’s not something that everyone has on hand. Even if you don’t have a steamer, you can still get perfectly steamed buns. You just have to be able to improvise.
I want to leave you with one last tip about steaming hot dog buns. Make sure you prepare the buns last of all. The hot dogs and all the toppings should be ready so that once the buns are steamed and warmed, you can serve them hot immediately.