Enjoy Mess-Free Hot Dogs On The Go With A Genius Coffee Filter Hack

hot dogs with assorted toppings
hot dogs with assorted toppings - Stepanek Photography/Shutterstock

The internet can be a wonderful place, full of life-changing tips and hacks that help you return cookies to their delicious, fresh-baked softness and keep your cheese fresh longer. It's the sad truth that not all hacks are created equal, and it seems like for every one that works, there's a dozen that don't. If you love hot dogs, mess-free cookouts, and saving some money, we have good news for you, in the form of hack that really does work: You can use coffee filters to hold your hot dogs in place of paper plates.

This one checks all the boxes: Not only does it do exactly what you want it to do, but it cuts down on waste, is super affordable, and even if you don't drink coffee or use coffee filters on a regular basis, this is a reason to keep them around. You might even find yourself stocking up on them, and we absolutely wouldn't blame you.

Read more: 11 Things You Didn't Know You Should Be Doing With Bacon

Replace Paper Plates With Coffee Filters

stack of coffee filters
stack of coffee filters - Tacar/Shutterstock

Let's say you're having a cookout for the neighborhood, the family, the friend group, the school class, or just your own household. You're whipping up a whole bunch of hot dogs on the grill, and lining them up so anyone and everyone can come grab one, two, or however many they want. Paper plates get unwieldy, don't they? And napkins? They just don't cut it.

Use coffee filters instead. The round, bowl-shaped, basket coffee filters are the perfect size for holding hot dogs, and there's a few advantages here. They don't take up the space (whether they're lined up on the table or in the trash) that paper plates do, but they'll still keep hands clean and toppings where they're supposed to be — i.e., not down the front of shirts. Since they're made of a paper that's meant to hold up to water without tearing, they're also going to be a little more durable than a napkin — and that's perfect if you're moving about or just standing and chatting.

While hot dog buns are standard fare, this idea also works with some hot dog bun alternatives. Opting for crescent rolls, tortillas, naan, flatbread, or a lettuce wrap? Hold them in your coffee filter.

Stock Up, And Use Them For These Other Foodie Hacks

ice cream on paper
ice cream on paper - New Africa/Shutterstock

Holding hot dogs isn't the only inventive way to use coffee filters, either. They work just as well for holding hamburgers and sliders, and you should definitely break out the coffee filters on the next Taco Tuesday. Sick of plating up tacos only to have the toppings run all over, and make a mess of the shells? Coffee filters! They also work great with popsicles. If you — or your kids — are sick of the sticky hands that inevitably come with enjoying a popsicle on a hot summer day, use a coffee filter wrapped around the stick. If you're handing out chips, nachos, popcorn, pretzels, or similar snacks, they're also great for setting out portions for partygoers to grab and go.

Here are some other pro tips that'll ensure you keep a stack of coffee filters on hand: They can also be used in place of a sachet of cheesecloth if you're making something with a bag of herbs that's going to need to be strained or removed, and they're also pretty great for removing odors. How? Fill with baking soda, tie, and leave in your fridge.

They also make great strainers — it is, after all, what they're designed for. Strain pulp from juice, crunchy bits from bacon fat, and if you're whipping up a batch of fries, onion rings, or chicken wings in your home fryer, they're pretty perfect for draining off the extra oil.

Read the original article on The Daily Meal