A “Krusty Korn Dog baker” machine was included in a catalog of hotel and restaurant supplies in 1929. The resulting product was a hot dog dipped in cornmeal batter and baked. There was no stick, and the Krusty Korn Dogs reportedly resembled an ear of corn after cooking.
A man name Stanley S. Jenkins was awarded a U.S. patent for the combined process of impaling food on a stick, dipping it in batter and deep frying it. He applied for the patent in 1927, and it was awarded on March 26, 1929.
In the ensuing years, there have been many variations of corn dogs and other items dipped in batter and deep fried on a stick. Bratwurst and spicy sausages are popular options, but there are many more. Cheese on a stick is common, as are bananas. Pickles on a stick, dipped in batter and deep fried, have been popular at state fairs in recent years.
Jenkins listed a wide range of food that could be prepared this way. The first one on a long list was wieners (hot dogs). Jenkins’ patent did not mention cornmeal batter, which is perhaps why he does not get full credit for creating corn dogs.
In spite of Jenkins’ patent, a number of other people and places claim to be the creators and origin of deep-fried corn dogs on sticks. Most of those were in the 1940s. They include vendors at the Texas State Fair, the Minnesota State Fair, and a drive-in restaurant in Springfield, Illinois.
Los Angeles corn dogs appeared in 1946 when Dave Barham opened Hot Dog on a Stick at Muscle Beach. Corn dogs in Los Angeles, California, have been popular ever since.