Mini Chili Cheese Dogs Are So Easy to Make

by Alli

My family and I were caught up in March Madness the entire month of March.  The road to the championship is almost over. Yes, I’m a basketball fanatic! Along with our love for college basketball, we also like small bites to enjoy throughout the games. Say hello to my mini chili cheese dogs.

Mini Chili Cheese Dogs

The entire family gathers at my house when our favorite teams are playing. We are a house divided when it comes to college basketball, but that’s okay. We love talking trash to each other and we’re never mean with it. It’s all in good fun. I think. And the food has to be on point.

Sports and hotdogs go hand in hand, but I wanted to make something a little different than just plain hot dogs so I went small.  The stars of my mini chili cheese dogs are little Smokies (cocktail franks).  They may be small, but they’re full of flavor!

How to Make Mini Chili Cheese Dogs

The crunch of the slightly sweet, toasted buns is the perfect vehicle to carry the bold taste of the little smokies, the melted cheese, and the flavorful chili.

Small bites always go over well at my parties.  They’re fun and easy to eat.  You don’t need utensils.  Let the games begin!

Mini Chili Cheese Dogs

Preheat oven to 350º.  Add chili to a saucepan and heat until warm.

Meanwhile, in another saucepan, bring 2 cups water to a boil. Add franks and simmer for 5 minutes.

Add Hawaiian rolls to a baking pan. Cut slits in the rolls. Be careful not to cut all the way through.

Slit holes in rolls - Mini Chili Cheese Dogs

Place one cocktail frank in each roll.

Add franks to the rolls to make mini chili cheese dogs.

Top each roll with chili.

Mini Chili Cheese Dogs

Add shredded cheese.

Add shredded cheese to make Mini Chili Cheese Dogs

Bake at 350º for 8-10 minutes, or until heated and cheese is melted.

Bake for 8-10 minutes or until cheese is melted - Mini Chili Cheese Dogs

This recipe makes 24 mini chili cheese dogs. Feel free to double or triple the recipe. Sometimes, when it’s only a few of us watching the game (rarely) I’ll only make a dozen.

If you don’t like chili from a can, make it homemade. I have the perfect chili recipe.

How to Make Mini Chili Cheese Dogs

Mini Chili Cheese Dogs

Yield: 24
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

These mini chilli cheese dogs are always a hit when I host a casual party. The cocktail franks are served in toasty Hawaiian rolls and covered with chili, and shredded Jack/cheddar cheese.


  • 24 Lil' Smokies (cocktail franks - 12 oz.)
  • 1 can chili, no beans
  • 2 Packs Hawaiian rolls (12 each)
  • Shredded Pepper Jack/Cheddar mixture, 2 cups


  1. Preheat oven to 350º.
  2. Pour chili into a saucepan and heat until warm.
  3. In another saucepan, bring 2 cups water to a boil. Add franks and simmer for 5 minutes. Drain.
  4. Cut a slit into each Hawaiian roll. Be careful not to cut all the way through.
  5. Place one frank in each roll and place in two 13x9 baking dishes.
  6. Top each with chili and cheese.
  7. Bake at 350º for 8-10 minutes, or until heated and cheese is melted.
Nutrition Information
Yield 24 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 101Total Fat 5gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 2gCholesterol 13mgSodium 229mgCarbohydrates 10gFiber 3gSugar 2gProtein 5g

Did you make this recipe?

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Are you a college basketball fan? If so, who’s your favorite team?

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Karen April 8, 2019 - 7:35 am

These are an excellent snack for sporting events on t.v., or for movie night. I look forward to making these soon! They look so delicious and easy to make.

Amber Myers April 8, 2019 - 8:15 am

Oh yes, I know everyone in my family would love these. Chili cheese dogs are so good. I haven’t made them in a while, so I’ll have to make these soon.

candy April 8, 2019 - 8:21 am

We call these hot dog sliders. My whole family loves them and you can make a bunch to feed a crowd easily.

Jeanette April 8, 2019 - 8:32 am

Those look awesome! I am planning on making these for our next game day party! This would be perfect!

cait April 8, 2019 - 8:37 am

YUM this is such a great idea ha- i can watit to make these for a party we are having a few weeks!

Amanda April 8, 2019 - 8:58 am

This is so perfect for boy moms like me who are always hosting kids after school–and those kids have bottomless stomachs!

kita April 8, 2019 - 9:03 am

I am doing a cookout for my sons birthday this year and was thinking of things I can make and this is one of them. I would need to make a lot though….boys lol

Terri Steffes April 8, 2019 - 9:48 am

What a perfect app for a summer backyard party! I love that these are easy and so cute! Pinned for future reference!

Melissa Chapman April 8, 2019 - 9:49 am

The games have been great and finding the right food is a must. These dogs are a perfect snack to watch tonight.

Lisa April 8, 2019 - 10:18 am

Yum, everything about those looks delicious. I can see them being perfect for any snacking night.

Jenn@Engineermommy April 8, 2019 - 10:45 am

This is such a perfect game-time dish. I love how cute and easy to eat these guys are. Definitely less cumbersome and messy than a full-sized frank.

Sarah Bailey April 8, 2019 - 3:34 pm

Now these sound absolutely delicious – I could definitely see these being a great party snack or when your hosting a buffet meal! A great little snack to nibble on!

Tasheena April 9, 2019 - 9:09 am

This would be perfect for me to make for my family while my kiddos are on spring break. Of course this would be perfect for game day as well in my home.

Catalina April 9, 2019 - 2:45 pm

What a great idea for a quick lunch! I will definitely make them!

Roch April 9, 2019 - 6:51 pm

These are great bites and they are friendly too for children. They’re pretty easy and simple to do.

Swathi April 9, 2019 - 10:51 pm

These are great snack or appetizer idea, and kids will love it. I would like to make this for next get together.

Restaurants in Baguio by Mae April 10, 2019 - 2:55 am

These mini chili cheese dogs looks inviting. My sister asked me to prepare a snack for her classmates for their group review, now I know what to prepare. My sister and her classmates will pretty sure enjoy this recipe. Thank you for sharing this recipe.

Heather April 10, 2019 - 10:53 am

Wow! This looks so so good! Thank you for sharing!


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