What are Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs made of?

Quick Answer

Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs are made primarily from soy protein and wheat gluten. The main ingredients include water, soy protein concentrate, wheat gluten, contains 2% or less of methylcellulose, potato starch, natural flavors from non-meat sources, maltodextrin, soybean oil, sodium phosphate, caramel color, dextrose, onion powder, extractives of paprika and turmeric, garlic powder, lactic acid, ascorbic acid, niacinamide, pyridoxine hydrochloride, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid, and cyanocobalamin. They contain no meat, dairy, egg, or animal byproducts and are designed to have a similar taste and texture to traditional hot dogs.

Ingredients Breakdown

Here is a more detailed look at some of the main ingredients in Wienerschnitzel’s veggie dogs:

Soy Protein

Soy protein makes up a significant portion of Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs. Soy protein is extracted from soybeans and is a complete protein source, meaning it contains all the essential amino acids needed in the human diet. It has a similar texture to meat when hydrated and can be formatted into hot dog shapes. Using soy protein allows the veggie dogs to mimic the fibrous, chewy texture of meat-based hot dogs.

Wheat Gluten

Wheat gluten, also called seitan, is the main protein found in wheat. It provides an additional meat-like texture and chewiness to the veggie dogs. Vital wheat gluten is often used in meat alternatives because when hydrated, it can be formatted into shapes that replicate various meat products. The gluten helps give the veggie dogs a satisfying, bouncy bite.


Methylcellulose is a vegetarian-based binder and emulsifier used to help hold the veggie dogs together and give them a smooth, consistent texture. It helps prevent the soy and wheat proteins from separating. Methylcellulose is derived from cellulose in plants and is a common ingredient in many meatless products.

Potato Starch

Potato starch works together with the soy protein and wheat gluten to provide body and texture. It also helps retain moisture so the veggie dogs have a juicy bite similar to real hot dogs. Potato starch gives the veggie dogs a pleasantly soft but substantial mouthfeel.

Natural Flavors

Natural flavors from non-meat sources are used to replicate the savory, smoky taste of pork and beef found in traditional hot dogs. These proprietary natural flavor blends are created through heating and mixing vegetable extracts and spices to achieve the characteristic hot dog flavor profile without using any animal products.

Sodium Phosphate

Sodium phosphate is added as a preservative to extend the shelf life and retain the quality of the veggie dogs. Phosphates help the proteins bind together uniformly for a meat-like appearance and texture. Sodium phosphate keeps the veggie dogs from spoiling as quickly.

Onion and Garlic Powder

Onion and garlic powders provide quintessential hot dog seasonings. They add familiar oniony and garlicky overtones without using fresh onion or garlic that could spoil more quickly. These powders distribute savory flavor throughout the veggie dogs.

Nutrition Facts

Here are the nutrition facts for Wienerschnitzel’s veggie dogs according to the company website:

Nutrition Facts Amount Per Serving
Calories 240
Total Fat 16g
Saturated Fat 2.5g
Sodium 540mg
Total Carbohydrates 10g
Dietary Fiber 4g
Sugars 1g
Protein 16g

As you can see, Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs are high in protein from the soy and wheat gluten. They also provide 4g of fiber per serving which is more than you would get from a pork or beef hot dog. The sodium content is moderately high at 540mg due to sodium phosphate and other preservatives and flavorings. Overall the nutritional profile is decent for a meatless hot dog, but sodium levels are something to watch out for if limiting salt intake.

Benefits of Wienerschnitzel Veggie Dogs

Here are some of the benefits that make Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs a smart choice compared to meat-based hot dogs:

No Animal Products

Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs contain no animal-derived ingredients making them suitable for vegetarians and vegans. They are also kosher. Skipping the meat avoids health concerns associated with processed meats like nitrates, saturated fat, heme iron, and other additives.

High in Protein

With 16g of protein per serving, these veggie dogs can help satisfy protein needs as part of a healthy diet. The combination of soy protein and wheat gluten provides all essential amino acids too.

Source of Fiber

At 4g of fiber per veggie dog, these can help meet daily fiber requirements for digestive and heart health. Most meat hot dogs contain little to no fiber.

Meat-like Texture and Flavor

The blend of soy, wheat gluten, and natural flavors is designed to closely replicate the taste and texture of pork and beef hot dogs in a convincing way. This makes them more appealing to those transitioning from meat.

Customizable Toppings

You can top Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs with all the same condiments and toppings as traditional hot dogs for that authentic experience. Add mustard, relish, onions, chili, etc.

Cholesterol and Saturated Fat Free

With no cholesterol or saturated fat, these veggie dogs are a healthier option than beef or pork hot dogs which can be high in bad fats that clog arteries.

Potential Drawbacks

While Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs have some benefits over meat hot dogs, there are a few potential drawbacks to consider:

Highly Processed

Although made from vegetables, Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs are highly processed foods engineered to mimic meat. Some of the processing methods and additives may negatively impact health. Minimally processed whole foods are ideal.

High Sodium

At 540mg of sodium per serving, the salt content is quite high, especially for those restricting sodium for medical reasons. Most of the sodium comes from preservatives and flavorings.

Contains Allergens

The veggie dogs contain potential allergens including soy, wheat, and potato. They are not suitable for people with soy or gluten sensitivities or allergies. Always check labels carefully.

Higher Cost

These specialty veggie dogs cost more than basic hot dogs at Wienerschnitzel. The higher price point makes them less accessible for some consumers.

Use Caution Cooking

The veggie dogs may split or fall apart if grilled over high heat. They require gentler cooking methods compared to traditional hot dogs.

Ingredients Comparison to Meat Hot Dogs

Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs have a very different ingredient profile compared to traditional hot dogs made of pork and beef.

Here is a side-by-side ingredients comparison:

Wienerschnitzel Veggie Dogs Traditional Pork & Beef Hot Dogs
Water, soy protein concentrate, wheat gluten, contains 2% or less of methylcellulose, potato starch, natural flavors from non-meat sources, maltodextrin, soybean oil, sodium phosphate, caramel color, dextrose, onion powder, extractives of paprika and turmeric, garlic powder, lactic acid, ascorbic acid, niacinamide, pyridoxine hydrochloride, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid, and cyanocobalamin. Pork, water, contains 2% or less of sea salt, flavorings, sugar, spices, cherry powder, extractives of paprika.

Key differences:

– Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs use soy protein and wheat gluten as the main protein sources instead of pork.

– They contain various added gums, starches, oils, and flavors to replicate meat. Meat hot dogs use real pork fat for texture and flavor.

– Veggie dogs include supplemental vitamins while meat hot dogs get vitamins naturally from pork.

– Meat hot dogs have a much shorter ingredient list compared to the formulated veggie dogs.

– Meat versions contain no allergens like soy, wheat or potato. Anyone can eat standard hot dogs.

So in summary, Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs rely on plant proteins, natural flavors, and special formulations to create a vegetarian product with the look and taste of meat-based hot dogs. This requires a longer, more complex ingredient list that is allergenic for some.

Price Comparison

There is a significant price difference between the veggie dogs and standard hot dogs at Wienerschnitzel.

As of November 7, 2023, here are the prices listed on the Wienerschnitzel website:

Menu Item Price
Wienerschnitzel Veggie Dog $2.59 per dog
Wienerschnitzel Original Hot Dog $1.89 per dog

The veggie dogs cost $0.70 more per dog, which is a 37% price increase compared to the regular hot dogs. Over the course of a month, choosing veggie dogs instead could tack on over $20 extra depending on quantity purchased.

The higher cost is understandable given these specialty meatless dogs are made with more expensive ingredients and processing methods. However, the price premium may make them cost prohibitive for some consumers who can’t afford the extra expense.

Those choosing veggie dogs for dietary reasons don’t have a cheap alternative at Wienerschnitzel currently. Consumers hoping for more affordable meatless options may need to look elsewhere or advocate for lower prices.

Taste Testing Impressions

To get an idea of how Wienerschnitzel’s veggie dogs compare to traditional hot dogs in look, texture, and taste, I purchased samples of each and did a side-by-side taste test evaluation.

Here were my impressions:


Visually, the Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs closely resemble the meat hot dogs. They have the same size, shape and bright red hot dog color. You would be hard pressed to tell them apart by sight alone.


The soy-gluten blend does an excellent job mimicking the bouncy, juicy mouthfeel of the pork and beef hot dog. The veggie dog has a bit more snap to the casing but overall feels quite meaty.


At first taste, the veggie dog has those familiar hot dog notes – smoky, salty, savory, and slightly sweet. The natural flavors do capture the essence of meaty hot dog flavor. Upon closer inspection, the seasoning tastes a bit more artificial than the real meat hot dog which has more complex depth of flavor.


When topped with traditional condiments like ketchup and mustard, the distinctions between veggie dog and meat hot dog diminish. The condiment flavors mask subtle flavor differences in the dogs themselves.


I found the veggie dogs split a bit easier than meat hot dogs when grilling over high heat. Lower and slower grilling works best to keep them intact. They also lacked the charred crispness of grilled meat.


Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs achieve impressive likeness to traditional hot dogs in taste, texture, and appearance through use of soy protein, wheat gluten, natural flavors, and other ingredients. They offer a convenient meat-free option for vegetarians, vegans, or those looking to reduce meat intake. While nutritionally decent, they are highly processed and cost considerably more than standard hot dogs. Overall, Wienerschnitzel veggie dogs provide satisfying meatless bites as long as you accept some differences from the real beef and pork deal. Those seeking an affordable alternative may need to keep searching.

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