I could eat chicken wings every day forever. They are so delicious. I love Buffalo Wild Wings, I always add an order of honey bbq wings when we grab Papa Johns for dinner, and I’ve been known to turn a girls’ night in into a T.G.I.Friday’s freezer-dinner, chowing down on potato skins and bbq wings for one. But, I usually feel a little guilty eating those wings. Particularly with mystery-meat “boneless” wings, I’m skeptical of the quality of chicken I’m eating and I hate eating preservatives and hidden calories when I don’t have to.
And so, we’ve started making our own chicken wings. When you make your own chicken wings, you can purchase the quality of chicken that makes you feel comfortable (organic? free-range? just a name brand and use-by date that you saw with your own eyes?). You know exactly what preservatives, oils, sauce, and hidden [none] calories are added to your chicken, and you are taking better care of yourself and your family. (I do share my wings with the husband from time to time.) And if that isn’t reason enough to start making your wings at home, here’s another big reason: it’s really easy.
Here’s how to make your own chicken wings. The instructions below correspond to the numbered photos above.
1. Purchase the chicken wings of your choice. They look like this.
2. Cut twice, on the two joints (see photo number 2) — you’ll want to use a big knife and you might have to wiggle it a bit to find the right place, but it isn’t very hard to figure out. It feels as if you are cutting through the joint. Throw the tips (the tiny piece on the far right of the photo) into a freezer bag to freeze for later. (You can use them when making chicken stock.)
3. Put the wing pieces into a bowl with salt, pepper, and olive oil. Stir to coat. You can spice them up now if you like, but I just keep them plain at this stage.
4. Put foil on your baking sheet, spray it with cooking spray (so the delicious skin doesn’t stick when you flip), and place the raw wings on your pan. Bake at 425* for 45 minutes, flipping once in the middle. When they come out, they should look like photo number 4.
5. Sauce your wings. If you are fancy, make your own sauce. If you are not fancy (like me), just use your favorite bbq sauce. We always have one bottle in the fridge and one back-up in the cabinet because running out of bbq sauce is a serious problem. [Sweet baby ray’s for the win!]
6. Put the wings back on the pan and into the oven for a few more minutes so that sauce can warm up and cook in a bit (this step is probably unnecessary but I always do it).
That’s it! Your wings are ready to eat and trust me, it is worth the extra effort.
Who are you cheering for this weekend? We aren’t really Broncos fans, but we’re cheering for them to win because (a) Wes Welker is hot and (b) Peyton played for the University of Tennessee Volunteers.