Daily Meal Readers Decide: Is A Hot Dog A Sandwich?

Since the dawn of the internet, certain questions have vexed netizens far and wide. How well can you punt a football? How is babby formed? And most importantly, is a hot dog a sandwich?

The last question may be the progenitor of more arguments and hurt feelings than perhaps any query in internet history. Though hot dogs come in many styles, whether they are sandwiches is universal. No one seems sure who first asked the question, but ultimately, it doesn't matter. The battle lines were rapidly drawn, with numerous celebrities (including an actual U.S. Supreme Court justice) eventually giving their take on the question, sometimes on national TV. This has, in turn, spawned even further questions ("Is a hot dog a taco?"). Those who believe a hot dog is a sandwich point to the varying definitions of "sandwich," while those who think it is not typically rely on some variant of "Because I don't want it to be."

So the question was posed on the Daily Meal's Facebook page, and you, dear readers, did not disappoint. Is a hot dog a sandwich? Let's let you settle the debate once and for all.

Some interesting questions were raised about what defines a sandwich

Though many readers simply said "yes" or "no," some raise further critical points. "Meat on bread, yes," says user Brenda Davis, raising the standard cry of those who believe a hot dog is, in fact, a sandwich. Since open-faced sandwiches are considered sandwiches (look, it's right there in the name), there's nothing that explicitly requires a sandwich to have a top piece of bread; by this definition, simply meat (or another key component like cheese or vegetables) on bread would constitute a sandwich.

User Chris Vent brings another unconsidered question into the discussion, saying (asking?): "Not unless it's sliced properly?" Does slicing thus determine a sandwich? A hot dog sliced in half and stuck between two pieces of bread (like perhaps a hot dog burger?) would have to be considered a sandwich. Is that humanity's dividing line on a hot dog's claim to sandwichdom? There is much to ponder.

Maybe the most existential question came from user Ed Maxwell, who states simply, "If you make it one." Ah, so perhaps a hot dog attains sandwichhood when one believes it has done so. Like the greatest of Buddhist koans, Ed Maxwell presents us with a statement that forces us to consider the nature of the self.

The most interesting question didn't even answer the prompt

User Frank Paulin, meanwhile, raises an interesting analogy: "Is cereal soup?" It seems this was intended to disprove the concept of a hot dog as a sandwich, but now we are forced to consider: Is cereal a type of soup? Technically, yes. Merriam-Webster defines soup as "A liquid food, especially with a meat, fish, or vegetable stock as a base and often containing pieces of solid food." You can't say soup can only be hot because gazpacho is clearly soup. Cereal doesn't have meat, fish, or vegetables, but the definition doesn't specifically require soup to have those, just that it usually does. So those who believe a hot dog is a sandwich must likewise acknowledge that cereal is indeed soup.

OK, so perhaps we didn't ultimately settle the debate. Still, some interesting questions have been raised, including ones seemingly never before asked, and there is much to consider.