We taste-tested hot dogs from all of the major fast-food burger joints -- and the winner was surprising

The fast-food hot dog wars are on.

On February 23, Burger King added grilled hot dogs to the menu.

Checkers & Rally’s responded the next day by selling its hot dogs for 79 cents.

“It’s a war we plan to win!” the company said in a news release.

But who serves the best wiener?

I taste-tested hot dogs from Five Guys, Burger King, Shake Shack, and Checkers. The winner surprised me.

First up, Checkers. As I waited in line, I scoured the menu for a hot dog but all I saw was a chilli dog. When I asked the employee for one regular hot dog, she looked at me as if I had four heads. Guess that's not a typical order...

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'OK, that will be 86 cents,' the worker said. Then I looked at her as if she had four heads.

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But I can see why it's so cheap. It's small, messy and depressing. The bag's face mirrored my own.

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Checkers' hot dog is definitely worth 86 cents. The '100% beef' menu item doesn't taste grilled -- more like it was quickly heated up. I got what I paid for.

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The new grilled hot dogs at Burger King became available at all locations on February 23.

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Burger King's system for to-go hot dogs isn't ideal. The classic hot dog comes with everything on it -- and then it's just stuffed into a paper bag.

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A little messy, but for $2.71 Burger King's classic dog comes with mustard, ketchup, relish, and onions.

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It's not soggy -- despite everything on it -- and after the first bite I can definitely taste that it's grilled. It has a smoky flavour and it's surprisingly tasty.

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Shake Shack's menu offers more than people realise. With three different types of hot dogs, I went with just the classic.

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At $3.59, Shake Shack's hot dog is as plain and as simple as it can get. If I were comparing this to the restaurant's burgers, the hot dog's presentation isn't exactly mouth watering.

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But it has the best to-go packaging of all the places I tried.

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Adding the ketchup and mustard myself was a little awkward. Shake Shack's hot dog looks as it tastes -- plain and boring. The buttery bun is probably the best part.

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Last stop, Five Guys. I stepped up to the registered and ordered one Kosher hot dog. 'One dog!' the employee immediately yelled to the kitchen. Out of all the restaurants I tried, she was the most unfazed by my order. I also appreciate that I can watch the employees prepare my order.

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But at $5.11, Five Guys is outrageously expensive for just a hot dog. The toppings weren't extra either.

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It's heftier than the other options, although I got the same toppings -- ketchup, mustard and relish.

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The dog comes sideways in the bun, which is different. It has a smokey and savoury flavour, but the bun is pretty soggy.

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After ordering all these hot dogs at typical burger joints, Burger King offers the best dog. Its smokey and rich flavour puts it above the competition. 'We're applying over 60 years of flame-grilling expertise with the Whopper sandwich to make Grilled Dogs the next great American icon,' Burger King executive Alex Macedo said in a press release. He might be on to something.

Marina Nazario/Business Insider

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