Robyn Lane

Robyn Lane

Robyn Lane

Where Do New Jersey Locals Go For Excellent Italian Hot Dogs?

The Italian hot dog was born in Newark, New Jersey. There really is nothing like it anywhere else in the country. You may come across something that resembles an Italian hot dog, but you’ll find nothing that can compete with the Garden State’s version.

The bread is a very important component. An authentic Italian hot dog is served on pizza bread. It kind of resembles a muffaletta, but with a hole in the middle. If I came across a Newark style Italian hot dog outside of Newark that didn’t use authentic pizza bread, I’d still eat it as long as the bread was good.

Check Out the Ultimate List Of NJ Places For Hot Dogs

That particular bread is the vessel that houses all the other components that make a true Newark style Italian hot dog, and it soaks up that flavorful grease.

2 deep fried hot dogs, fried onions, peppers, and deep fried potatoes are stuffed into the pizza bread.

Who Invented The Italian Hot Dog

According to Jimmy Buff’s website, Jimmy Buff’s of 14th Ave. & 9th St. in Newark, NJ is where the hotdog with an Italian twist was first concocted by the founder James “Bluff” Racioppi in 1932.

Grandpa got his nickname from his style at the card table. Translation from Italian to English came up with the nickname “BUFF”. In the 20s and 30s everyone had a nickname and hence James Racioppi became known as “Jimmy Buff”.

The sandwich was first served as a treat by the Racioppi’s for close friends and relatives. It went over so big with them it became the center of their menu and ultimately a customer favorite. The fresh onions, peppers, and potatoes combined with a hot dog is what allows the specialty its claim to originality.

According to foodigenous, One far-off legend has the origins of the Italian hot dog and pizza bread going all the way back to Italy, where peasants would supposedly stuff the bread with sausages and vegetables and hang it on the end of a stick hence, the hole in the bread.

Nearly 28 years after moving to New Jersey, I have found places via word of mouth that serve good Italian hot dogs outside of Newark, but Newark will always hold a piece of my heart and stomach.

Where Do New Jersey Locals Go For Excellent Italian Hot Dogs?

I think this list covers just enough ground for those who are interested in this New Jersey Original.


  • Jimmy Buff's Italian Hot Dogs - : 60 Washington St, West Orange, NJ 07052 & 506 Boulevard, Kenilworth, NJ 07033

    Gotta start with the inventor. Jimmy Buff’s rated #1 in responses for my quest for great Italian hot dogs.

  • Tommy's Italian Sausage & Hot Dogs - 900 2nd Ave, Elizabeth, NJ 07201

    You may have read that Tommy’s is on the brink of closure. It’s been rough for them to keep the doors open, so I propose we all get our next Italian hot dog at Tommy’s which has been open since 1969. Let’s keep them open for another 50 plus years. They really do rate in the top tier of the best Italian hot dogs in Jersey.

    Where NJ Locals Go For Excellent Italian Hot Dogs



  • Boulevard Dogs-n-More - 206 Boulevard, Hasbrouck Heights, NJ 07604

    Angelo is a king among kings. Angelo and his crew make an authentic Italian hot dog on pizza bread! 


  • Dickie Dee's - 380 Bloomfield Ave, Newark, NJ 07107

    Serving one of the best Italian hot dogs you’ll ever wrap your lips around. Since 1958, it’s still the same great tasting Italian hot dog you had as a kid.

  • D's Italian Hotdogs - 316 Beverly Rancocas Rd, Willingboro, NJ 08046

    I have never tried an Italian dog from this trailer, but plenty of other people have. According to my sources, Darrell is the man who owns the trailer. He’s kind and friendly, and not only makes a great Italian hot dog, he makes killer pastrami.

  • Dicky's Dogs - 332 Atlantic City Blvd, Toms River, NJ 08757

    Folks on the Shore love the Italian hot dogs from Dicky’s.

  • Dave's Hot Dogs - 323 S Pine Ave, South Amboy, NJ 08879

    Dave’s chili dogs are pretty famous, thanks to his award winning chili, but have you tried the Italian hot dog?

  • La Madre Maria - 2480 Hooper Ave, Brick Township, NJ 08723

    La Madre Maria has Italian Hot Dogs made the Newark Way.  Single or Double, Pizza Bread, Sabrett hot dog, peppers & onions, fried potatoes. comes traditionally with mustard & ketchup. Pretty close to where I live and a good local choice.

  • Passarelli’s Italian Hot Dogs & Sausage - 3230 Mazza Rd, Tinton Falls, NJ 07753

    Lots of folks have known for decades how good the Italian hot dogs and sausage and peppers are at Passarelli’s. . You can book them for your next event too.



  • Oakwood's Point Pizza - 2708 Bridge Ave, Point Pleasant, NJ 08742

    John Fox swears this place makes the best Italian Hot Dog in Ocean County and one of the 5 best in the state. I’ll take his word for it because he knows hot dogs of all kinds.  William E. also gives this place a thumbs up for their Newark style Itlalian hot dog on real pizza bread.

    Italina Hot dog


  • Designer Dawgs - 3 Main St, Clinton, NJ 08809

    I added Designer Dawgs based on a photo. If I could eat a photo, this would be the one.

    Where NJ Locals Go For Excellent Italian Hot Dogs

  • Riccio's Gourmet Italian Market - 1 Plaza Dr Unit 5 Toms River

    This used to be called Gustosa’s, my husband’s office is right up the road. When he worked on weekends, I would often stop to buy him coffee and breakfast. Now I have to return for this tasty looking Italian hot dog posted by William E.  William wrote: . “Butcher quality, made specifically for them, grilled to perfection. Their Italian-style preparation features potatoes, peppers, and onions served on fresh Staten Island bread. This is absolutely THE BEST Italian hot dog I’ve ever had, no questions asked.”


    Italian hot dog Riccio's Toms River

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