Pregnancy cravings can be intense! If you’ve been longing for that satisfying crunch of a corn dog, you may be wondering – can I actually eat these? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. In this post, we’ll discuss:
Table of Contents
- Are Corn Dogs Safe During Pregnancy?
- Cooking Corn Dogs to a Safe Temperature
- Reheating Leftover Corn Dogs
- Buying Pre-Made Corn Dogs
- Making Corn Dogs at Home
- Nutrition Facts for Corn Dogs
- Risks and Concerns with Eating Corn Dogs While Pregnant
- Healthy Ways to Satisfy Your Cravings
- Corn Dog Alternatives
- When to Indulge Your Cravings
Are Corn Dogs Safe During Pregnancy?
The good news is – yes, corn dogs can be a safe and delicious treat during pregnancy! 👍most corn dog ingredients are safe in pregnancy including the hot dog, cornmeal batter, oil used for frying, and typical condiments like ketchup and mustard.
According to the FDA, hot dogs and sausages need to reach an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) to eliminate any risks from bacteria like Listeria. This applies to corn dogs too, since the hot dog is inside that crispy coating.
As long as you properly cook or reheat them, corn dogs are A-OK! The key is ensuring they are steaming hot all the way through before you take a bite.
However, raw hot dogs directly from the package are never recommended in pregnancy due to the risk of listeriosis. Always cook hot dogs thoroughly to steaming hot before eating in pregnancy. We’ll discuss more about risks and precautions later in this post.
Cooking Corn Dogs to a Safe Temperature
When cooking corn dogs at home, use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature. Insert the thermometer into the middle of the hot dog to get an accurate reading.
For frying, heat the oil to 325-375°F (163-191°C). Cooking times can vary based on size, but allow at least 5 minutes for the internal temperature to reach 165°F (74°C).
You can also air fry pre-made corn dogs. Just follow package instructions and use a thermometer to confirm they are fully cooked.
Reheating Leftover Corn Dogs
Got leftovers? Reheat corn dogs to 165°F (74°C) or until steaming hot before eating. This eliminates any bacteria that may have grown during storage.
You can reheat corn dogs in the oven at 350°F (177°C) for 10-15 minutes, or microwave for 60-90 seconds. Check the internal temperature with a thermometer for safety.
Pro tip: wrap corn dogs in a damp paper towel when microwaving to prevent the coating from drying out! 💡
Buying Pre-Made Corn Dogs
When purchasing cooked corn dogs from a vendor or store, check that they are served fresh and hot. If they seem lukewarm, request that they be reheated until steaming.
If they are held in a warming tray, ask the staff what temperature it is set to. It should be above 165°F (74°C) to keep the corn dogs safe to eat.
Making Corn Dogs at Home
You can also make corn dogs completely from scratch! Use fresh hot dogs and prepare a cornmeal batter for coating.
When frying at home, monitor the oil temperature with a deep fry or candy thermometer. Cook the corn dogs in batches to maintain the heat at 350-375°F (177-191°C). This prevents the oil from cooling too much.
For safety, always use tongs and fry with care to avoid burns. Once again, double check that the internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C).
Nutrition Facts for Corn Dogs
Now that we’ve covered the safety – how do corn dogs stack up nutritionally?
Here are some key nutrients for a standard corn dog:
|Corn Dog (96g)
|Plain Beef Hot Dog (42g)
As you can see, corn dogs are high in calories, carbs, fat and sodium. This is typical for fried foods made with processed meat like hot dogs.
While corn dogs can be enjoyed in moderation, it’s best not to make them an everyday meal. Focus on getting nutrients from healthier sources like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and whole grains.
Risks and Concerns with Eating Corn Dogs While Pregnant
Now that we’ve looked at the nutrition facts, let’s discuss some of the top risks and concerns related to eating corn dogs during pregnancy:
Raw or undercooked hot dogs can potentially contain harmful bacteria like Listeria or Toxoplasma which pose risks like fever, flu symptoms, and even miscarriage or stillbirth. Always cook hot dogs thoroughly to 165°F. Avoid hot dogs straight from the fridge.
High Fat/Sodium Content
Fried, battered foods like corn dogs tend to be high in fat, calories, and sodium. Eating these foods in excess can contribute to gestational diabetes, excess weight gain, high blood pressure, and other complications.
Processed meats like hot dogs often contain nitrates and nitrites to preserve color and prolong shelf life. Some studies link consuming nitrates/nitrites to an increased risk of certain cancers and birth defects, although more research is needed. Consider nitrate-free hot dog options when possible.
This chemical compound forms in starchy foods like cornmeal batter during high-heat cooking methods like frying. Acrylamide may increase cancer risk. Reheating or overcooking corn dogs can increase acrylamide levels.
Healthy Ways to Satisfy Your Cravings
If you’re really longing for a corn dog, go for it and celebrate! But there are also some healthier ways to get a similar taste and texture:
- Turkey or veggie corn dogs
- Corn dog muffins made with whole wheat batter
- Corndog skewers with chicken sausage and veggies
- Baked corn dog nuggets with Greek yogurt dipping sauce
Getting creative can help give you that perfect crunch and flavor, without going overboard on fat, sodium and calories. 😊
Corn Dog Alternatives
Here are some other satisfying snacks to curb your cravings:
- Veggie sticks with hummus or Greek yogurt dip
- Apple slices with natural peanut butter
- Cottage cheese with salsa and crackers
- Trail mix with nuts, seeds and dried fruit
- Smoothies made with Greek yogurt and fresh or frozen fruit
- Hard boiled eggs with sea salt and everything bagel seasoning
- Cinnamon apple chips – simply slice apples and bake with cinnamon
When to Indulge Your Cravings
It’s totally understandable to have intense cravings during pregnancy! Here are some good times to go ahead and indulge:
- Special occasions like birthdays, holidays or vacations
- Days when you have an ultrasound or doctor’s appointment
- Times when you need a quick treat or pick-me-up
- As a weekend treat or Friday night dinner
Just balance it out with nutritious meals and snacks during the rest of the week. Moderation and variety is key!
The bottom line?If you’ve been craving a corn dog, you can absolutely enjoy one during pregnancy! 🌽🐶 Just take precautions to cook it thoroughly and balance it out with healthier habits overall.
- Corn dogs can be a safe, occasional treat during pregnancy if cooked to 165°F (74°C).
- Reheat leftovers to a safe temperature before eating again.
- When buying pre-made, ensure corn dogs are served fresh and hot.
- Make your own from scratch for fun – just monitor oil temp and cook thoroughly!
- While tasty, corn dogs are high in fat, carbs and sodium so enjoy in moderation.
- Get creative with healthier baked versions or try substitutions like turkey dogs.
- Satisfy cravings in moderation along with more nutritious snacks and meals.
Now that you know the scoop, go ahead and relish that perfectly crispy, corndog crunch! 😋 Enjoy it guilt-free as an occasional treat for you and baby.
Check that it’s steaming hot and the internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C) using a food thermometer. Also look for an external temperature of 325-375°F (163-191°C) if frying at home.
Baking corn dog muffins or nuggets at home allows you to control the ingredients. Substitute whole grain batter, turkey dogs and healthy toppings.
Yes, you can microwave corn dogs to reheat them. Ensure they reach 165°F (74°C) internally before eating to prevent bacterial growth. Cover in a damp paper towel to prevent drying out.
Focus on healthier substitutions like turkey corn dogs, baked versions, or swaps like apple chips. Also, keep portions reasonable by cutting corn dogs in half.
Not necessarily – you can still enjoy them if they are cooked thoroughly to the proper temperature. Just don’t eat them daily, and be extra careful about good storage and reheating.