Chicken wings are probably the single most iconic sports food there is, but a lot of people don’t eat them outside of sports bars. I get it—anything deep fried can intimidate home cooks. But if you’re willing to face the hot oil, it’s really not hard to make chicken wings at home. And if you don’t want to deal with frying, you can also make awesome wings in the oven or on the grill. Here are 13 recipes to check out for Super Bowl, from classic fried Buffalo wings and grilled Cajun wings to baked wings flavored with strawberries and chipotles.
The Ultimate Extra-Crispy Double-Fried Confit Buffalo Wings
There’s really only one way to start a chicken wing roundup: the perfect Buffalo wing. That means moist, tender meat and crispy skin, which we achieve with a two-stage cooking process—we fry the wings at a low-temperature to break down the collagen, then finish them in hotter oil to crisp the skin. As for the sauce, you can’t improve on the classic Frank’s and butter.
Sweet Chili Chicken Wings
If you’re going to use a single-fry technique, 375°F (190°C) oil is the way to go. That’s how we cook these wings, which get tossed in a sweet-and-spicy sweet chili sauce flavored with ginger, garlic, soy sauce, and rice vinegar. We also add tahini, an unexpected ingredient that adds a sesame flavor, which works perfectly in the Asian-inspired sauce.
Extra-Crispy Thai Sweet and Spicy Wings
Chicken wings don’t need a coating to be crispy, but there’s nothing wrong with battering your wings if you want extra crunch. Here we go with a double dredging in a flour, cornstarch, and baking powder batter. After the wings come out of the oil we dress them in a spicy vinegar-based sauce.
The Best Korean Fried Chicken
Buffalo doesn’t have a monopoly on chicken wings—Korean fried chicken is less traditional for game day, but just as delicious. What sets it apart is an eggshell-thin crust, which comes from a batter made with flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and vodka (which inhibits gluten formation).
Really Good Oven-Fried Buffalo Wings
If you’re still not sure about deep frying, you can make baked wings that are less messy and taste almost indistinguishable from fried ones. All you need to do is let the wings air-dry overnight after tossing them with baking powder and salt, which lets the skin get crispy fast enough that the meat doesn’t dry out.
Oven-Baked Strawberry-Chipotle Wings With Avocado-Blue Cheese Dip
Of course you can toss oven-fried wings with traditional Buffalo sauce, but that’s far from your only option. For something more unusual, try this tangy-but-sweet sauce made with strawberries, chipotles, and balsamic vinegar. As if that’s not flavorful enough, we serve the wings with a creamy blend of avocado, blue cheese, and sour cream.
Hot and Numbing Xi’an-Style Oven-Fried Chicken Wings
Standard Buffalo not spicy enough for you? If you want your wings to have a serious kick, ditch the sauce altogether and toss them in this mouth-numbing mix of Sichuan peppercorns, cumin, fennel seed, and dried red chilies. It’s a little more work than using ground spices, but starting with whole spices that you toast and grind yourself gives the wings a much better flavor.
Grilled Hoisin-Glazed Chicken Wings
If the weather’s not too cold come Super Bowl Sunday then you have a third option for preparing your wings: grilling. The key is to start them over indirect heat, then to move them to direct heat when you apply the glaze—in this case a combination of hoisin sauce, garlic, ginger, and five-spice powder.
Grilled Honey Chipotle Wings
No, there’s not a mistake in this recipe—it really does use three chipotles and a tablespoon of adobo sauce for half a cup of honey. While it’ll taste brutally spicy before cooking, as the glaze caramelizes on the grill the honey’s sweetness intensifies and the heat mellows slightly.
Grilled Cajun Chicken Wings
Grilling allows for the opportunity to give you wings even more flavor by coating them with a spice rub before cooking. In this recipe we use a Cajun-style blend of paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, dried thyme, cayenne, and cumin. We keep the Cajun theme going with the sauce, made with Louisiana-style pepper sauce, butter, and Worcestershire.
Grilled Sriracha Hot Wings
These grilled wings are coated in a Sriracha-based sauce made with soy sauce and vinegar and sweetened with honey. We also add butter to replicate that Buffalo sauce richness. We apply the sauce twice, using some as a glaze and the rest after the wings come off the grill.
Spicy Cumin Wings
New York City’s Xi’an Famous Foods is, well, famous for its spicy cumin lamb noodles. The combination of cumin and more typical Chinese flavors works incredibly well, so we borrow it for these wings. We rub them with cumin, Sichuan peppercorns, salt, and baking powder, then glaze them with soy sauce, sherry, rice vinegar, garlic, and red pepper flakes as they cook.
Grilled Spicy Chicken Wings With Soy and Fish Sauce
Marinating your wings before grilling lets you add flavor and makes them extra juicy. This spicy Chinese-style marinade is made with Shaoxing wine, black pepper, soy sauce, fish sauce, sugar, granulated garlic, and chili peppers. The recipe calls for a formidable 15 chilies, but you can use as few as five if you don’t want quite so much heat.