Instant Pot Cheat-Grilled Hot Dogs

Who says it needs to be summer to grill Hot Dogs? In fact, who says you need a GRILL to grill Hot Dogs? Nope! All you need is an Instant Pot with the Air Fryer Lid or  Ninja Foodi to not only make the perfect hot dog, but to also do it mess-free, hassle-free and smokey-free!

I’m not kidding when I tell you that this may well be the easiest recipe on the planet. So forget the charcoal. The only char you’ll be getting here is the perfect crisp on your hot dog. So grab a pack with some buns because whether it’s the middle of summer or the dead of winter, you’ll be enjoying hot dogs anytime right at home! 

Here’s How I Made It!: 

If using the Instant Pot, place the air fryer basket in the pot with the divider in place. If using the Ninja Foodi, place the trivet in liner pot with the grill in the position where it’s closer to the top of the lid. 


Once pre-heated, lay a few hot dogs on the divider of the basket or the trivet (and do it so the lines of the trivet’s rack go in the opposite direction of the hot dogs – this makes for a nice aesthetic when cooked). 

To ensure even cooking, take a pairing knife and lightly lacerate the surface of each hot dog into four diagonal cuts. 

It’ll be tough to see now, but once cooked, it’s gonna look fabulous! 

Place the air fryer lid on top and and bake/roast/cheat-grill for a few minutes (NO FLIPPING REQUIRED!) 

When done, those dogs are gonna be PERFECT! 

Take some tongs… 

…and remove the hot dogs to a plate. 

If you wish to have a bit of a toasted bun, add a few to the trivet, face-side-up. 

Add the lid and cook for just a few moments. 

Look how pretty the buns will be when done toasting! 

Arrange your hot dog by placing it in a bun… 

…and dressing it up however you want! 

Mmmm…mustard and relish for me! (For an insane Chili Dog, pour some of my Blue Ribbon Chili over them!) 

Take a bite… 

…and then take me out to the ball game…ON MY COUCH! 

Hot Dogs have NEVER tasted SO good SO easily!

Ninja Foodi Cheat-Grilled Hot Dogs
Yield: 6

Instant Pot Cheat-Grilled Hot Dogs

Instant Pot Cheat-Grilled Hot Dogs

Who says you need to grill your hot dogs? Air frying them not only gives virtually the same result, but also saves you from going out in the snow to grill them in the winter!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 13 minutes
Total Time 18 minutes


  • Hot Dogs (however many you want to eat)
  • Hot Dog Buns (also however many you want to eat)
  • Whatever condiments you love (mustard, relish, sauerkraut, ketchup, etc)


  1. If using the Instant Pot, place the basket in the pot with the silver rack in place so it’s crates a top rack. If using the Ninja Foodi, place the trivet in the liner pot, high side-up so the rack is closer to the top of the pot rather than the bottom.
  2. Place the Air Fryer Lid on the Instant Pot and hit Broil for 11 minutes and hit Start. If using the Foodi, lower the TenderCrisp lid on the Ninja Foodi, hit Bake/Roast, set for 400° at 11 minutes and hit Start.
  3. Once 5 minutes have passed and 6 minutes remain, it will be pre-heated. Lift the lid and place as many hot dogs as you wish on the rack or trivet. If using a trivet, make sure the lines on the rack go in the opposite direction as the length of the hot dog so it creates a nice presentation when cooked. Taking a pairing knife, lightly lacerate each hot dog four times diagonally. This will not only ensure even cooking, but will give it a beautiful look when done!
  4. Place the Air Fryer Lid or TenderCrisp Lid on top and cook for the remaining 6 minutes (but check on it after 5 minutes to make sure it’s cooked to your desired texture). When done, hit Cancel or Stop, remove the hot dogs with tongs and transfer to a plate.
  5. If you wish to toast your buns, place them on the trivet rack (I could only fit three at a time), lower the Air Fryer Lid or TenderCrisp lid, hit Broil for the Instant Pot or Bake/Roast for the Foodi and set for 400° at 2 minutes (they should be done after 90 seconds). Remove when done.
  6. Place the hot dog in the bun, dress it up with any condiments you wish (my Blue Ribbon Chili is a great one!) and serve immediately.

Jeffrey's Tips

If you want a less-charred hot dog, check on it after 4 or 5 minutes. If you want it more charred, go longer!

You can use any type of hot dog – turkey dog, chicken dog, whatever! The instructions remain the same.

Pour some of my Blue Ribbon Chili over them!

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