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All-Natural Carrot Dogs

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  • Author: Kathy Hester


A carrot is the same shape as a hot dog and close enough in color to make a decent substitute. But what about the taste? I promise you, this marinade really takes it to the next level. I think the sesame oil helps, but the vinegar gives it that “cured” flavor, too. – Kathy Hester


  • 4 carrots, cut into bun lengths
  • 1⁄4 cup (60 ml) seasoned rice vinegar (or apple cider vinegar and a dash of salt)
  • 1⁄4 cup (60 ml) water
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) sesame oil (*leave out)
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) coconut aminos (can substitute soy sauce; use unseasoned vinegar)
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon garlic powder (or 1⁄2 clove garlic, minced)
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • Pepper, to taste
  • Toasted hot dog bun, lettuce or collard leaves, to serve


  1. Heat water in a pot large enough for all the carrots. When it comes to a boil, turn down to medium heat and add the carrots. Cook until you can just pierce them through with a fork; you want them to have a snap when you bite into them. Remove from pot and run cold water over them to stop them from cooking.
  2. In a container with a tight-fitting lid, combine the remaining ingredients to make the marinade. Tighten the lid and shake until well mixed.
  3. Place the carrots in a container in which they can lie flat. Pour the marinade over them and marinate at least 3 to 4 hours, up to 24. The longer they marinate, the more vinegar flavor they take on. If you know you need to leave them longer than a day, cut the vinegar to 1⁄8 cup (30 ml). If the carrots are very skinny, keep the marinating time short.
  4. To serve, heat the carrots in a 350°F (177°C) oven, or in a grill pan on a hot grill, until heated through, 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Serve in a toasted hot dog bun or wrapped in a lettuce or collard leaf, and pile on your favorite toppings.


  • TIP: You can cook these in your slow cooker in the marinade. You need to check on them so they do not get mushy, so it is not a set-it-and-walk- away affair. Cook until a fork just goes through the carrot but it is still slightly firm.
  • Recipe reprinted with permission from Kathy Hester and Page Street Publishing.