Hot Dog Stew

Sometimes, the pantry is the bare. Sometimes, the refrigerator and freezer are also in the same sad shape. Sometimes, you need to make dinner anyhow.

On those nights, a concoction gets thrown together from whatever can be scrounged up. And sometimes, you get lucky and said concoction ends up being delicious, even though you can’t believe it’s possible.

Thus I present…hot dog stew.

Hot Dog Stew

  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 pkg. Lit’l smokies, cocktail weiners or hot dogs, sliced
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 can sauerkraut, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar
  • 1/2 t. Italian seasoning
  • 4 c. chicken stock
  • 1 15 oz. can tomato sauce
  • 1/2 c. pearl barley

1. Heat oil in a large stock pot. Add Lit’l smokies or hot dogs and onion. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook for 3-5 minutes, just until meat starts to get a little browned.

2. Add remaining ingredients, bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat. Let simmer at least until barley is tender, about 30 minutes. (Can be simmered longer or even cooked all day in a crock pot.)

3. Just before serving, season again with salt and pepper to taste, if needed.

Honestly, this is shockingly good. And my husband couldn’t wait to dig into the leftovers the next day.

The flavors complement each other perfectly and the final product is actually very mellow, which is surprising for a dish with sauerkraut. (Although if you prefer that tartness, just skip the rinsing of the sauerkraut.)

Do you have any good empty pantry recipes or stories to share?

4 thoughts on “Hot Dog Stew

  1. I just had to comment. Hot dogs and saurkraut are 2 of my absolute favorite things!! I think this looks fantastic:) Too bad I would be the only one eating it.

    We have had lots of interesting meals lately. I’ve been doing my own little pantry challenge for about 2 months now. One of the best things I came up with recently was just using up some leftovers. I had some leftover baked salmon, 2 tomatoes and some fresh spinach that needed to be used up. I tossed the salmon in a skillet with olive oil and garlic to heat it up. Then, I threw the tomatoes and spinach in at the end, just until the spinach was wilted. Served it over pasta (linguine I think) with a little olive oil and parm cheese mixed in. I didn’t think my husband would eat it b/c of the spinach, but he loved it!

  2. I tried this one with my family tonight! I was very skeptical based on both the picture and the name of the dish. BUT, I decided to try it, since you said it was “shockingly” good. And yes, I was pleasantly surprised! Hubby and I both really enjoyed it. My oldest child liked it as long as she had a bite of lil’ smokies on her spoon, my middle child really didn’t like it much at all, and my youngest (almost 2) ate it without any help for the majority of the meal, but ended up opting for just the lil’ smokies at the end. I ended up not rinsing the sauerkraut, which I enjoyed, but my kids probably would have fared better if I had rinsed it instead.

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