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What’s for dinner?: Perfect-for-game-night chicken wings

Categories: Food & Cooking

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Football season = chicken wings.

Oh man, there’s not much I care less about than watching football.  But I love the snacks.  So, I’m dedicating this post to the unofficial food of football season, chicken wings.  Two weekends ago, Buffalo, New York hosted the 8th annual National Buffalo Wing Festival, where they calculated that 92,000 fans devoured 40 tons of chicken wings.  Wowsers.

But we’re all pretty much aware that a less healthy food is hard to find, especially when you factor in the deep-fried aspect of most of the restaurant or fair/festival varieties.  But sometimes one has to park your nutritional conscience in a corner, and indulge your inner sports fan.

Here’s a recipe for baked chicken wings that have all of the flavor, the crispiness, and the appeal of one of the best foods on the planet, with a little less guilt.


  • 2 pounds chicken wings (save the small wing tip for stock or discard)
  • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce (like Tabasco)
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil


Season the wings with salt and pepper.  Mix together the garlic, chili powder, cumin, hot sauce, brown sugar lime juice and olive oil until well blended.  Put the wings into a large zipper-seal plastic bag (you may want to use two, and divide the sauce in half), add the sauce, squish all round until well coated, and refrigerate for 2 hours, or let sit at room temp for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.  Spread the chicken wings on an oiled baking sheet, and bake for 20 minutes. Turn the wings and bake for 15 minutes more, until the wings show no sign of pink when cut.

Oh, did you want a dip with that?  Here you go.  Cut up some carrot and celery sticks, too, to balance out the indulgence.

Blue Cheese Dip

  • 2/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese, such as Roquefort, Maytag or Danish blue
  • 2 tablespoons chopped scallions or chives
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • dash hot sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat leaf parsley (very optional)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Mix it all up, and dip to your heart’s content.

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