If you are as big a Buffalo Chicken Wing fan as I am, then you are going to love this recipe. Whether it is game day, you are having a party or want a unique dish to serve at your next BBQ, these flavor packed wings will knock your socks off. What makes them soooo tasty is that I grill them (or rather my husband does) to get a nice smoky grilled flavor and a slight grill char that you just can’t achieve in the fryer or in the oven. Believe you me, you won’t be able to eat just one of these fall of the bone, crispy, state bud popping wings!
If you REALLY want to impress why make only Buffalo Style wings? After all you are already firing up the grill and have a hankering for chicken wings. Pair your Grilled Spicy Buffalo Wings with my Grilled Asian Style Sticky Wings for a little variety and give your family or party guests a real treat with two styles of grilled chicken wings.
Ready to get cooking? Great! Let’s get to it.
First off the secret to these wings (just like my Grilled Asian Style Sticky Wings) is to not add the sauce till the very last minute and place them in the oven to finish them off. If you try to sauce them on the grill you will burn off an eyebrow or worse ruin some really delicious wings. The butter and sauce is not suitable for the grill… instead you toss the wings in the sauce just before serving. During cooking you use a dry rub that will help season the wings without causing flare ups and burning. In addition, you want to set your grill up with a safe area and a hot area. Chicken being what it is (fatty and drippy when on the grill) you want to have two zones to your cooking method. Follow this advice and you will have wings that your neighbors and guests will rave about for months.
So here are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind before you roll up your sleeves and start cooking.
This is, “THE MOST IMPORTANT TIP” to making grilled chicken wings: BE SURE TO CREATE A SAFE ZONE ON YOUR GRILL!
Sorry to shout, but the truth is that the biggest mistake people make when grilling food is to dump a whole bunch of lit coals in the middle of the grill and walk away. BIG mistake. That is the best way to ruing your food and burn your hands or burn eyebrows off.
You need to create, “safe zones” on your grill in order to control the temperature and reduce flare ups. To do so with a charcoal grill (my husband’s favorite… we actually gave away our gas grill in favor of our charcoal because the flavor is soooo much better) you will want to light your charcoal in a chimney starter (don’t use lighter fluid – it is not only dangerous but changes the flavor of food) and then bank the lit coals to one side of the grill. In the picture above the left side is the hot side and the right where the wings are on the safe side. There is still plenty of heat radiating to cook the wings on the safe side but you will minimize flare ups.
Using tongs move the wings from the safe side of the grill to the hot side of the grill and rotate the wings each time you do. As the fat from the chicken begins to render you will see the drips and flare ups begin to happen. When they do, using tongs, move the wings back to the safe side, season with the dry seasoning mixture on occasion till you are happy all have received enough seasoning love and then repeat the process. You will want to do this for about 15 minutes until the wings look like this:
At this point the wings have a nice smoky flavor and are par cooked but not completely cooked through. You don’t want the wings to be burnt or overdone on any side, just browned in general. Once the wings look browned overall with some char but not burnt then remove to a sheet pan with a wire rack as shown below.
At this point the wings can be placed in the oven to cook fully through, will maintain a nice smoky flavor and will be fall off the bone.
Don’t sauce your wings until you pull them from the oven… this will give your wings a nice coating of delicious without the gross burning or setting off your fire alarms.
I have included two ways to make your sauce for these wings… one is a cheat but taste fantastic if you don’t feel like melting butter and such the other is a homemade version. Feel free to give them both a shot and see what you like better, but be warned the dry rub we use does have a kick and will add some heat and flavor to your wings in addition to whatever sauce you choose.
Once they are sauced plate your wings, garnish and enjoy! Hope you enjoy this recipe and that my tips will help make your dish a success.
- About 2 to 3 pounds of chicken wings (depending on how large of a crowd you are feeding - estimate 6 to 8 wings per person).
- 2 Tablespoons salt
- 1 Tablespoon freshly ground pepper
- 1 Teaspoon chili powder
- 1 Teaspoon smoked paprika powder
- 1 Teaspoon cayenne pepper powder
- ½ cup FRANK'S RedHot® Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce
- ⅓ cup butter,melted
- 1 Jar Franks RedHot® Original Wing Sauce
- Combine Frank's RedHot Sauce and butter in bowl.
- Combine 2 Tablespoons salt, 1 Tablespoon freshly ground pepper, 1 Teaspoon chili powder, 1 Teaspoon smoked paprika powder, 1 Teaspoon cayenne pepper powder in a small bowl and mix with a spoon or your fingers.
- Using a charcoal chimney starter set up a charcoal grill with a hot zone and a safe zone, by banking the lit coals to one side of the grill. If using a gas grill set up a high heat side and a low heat side.
- Place raw chicken wings on the safe side of the grill and spring some of the dry seasoning on the wings until lightly coated. Rake wings from safe side to hot side until chicken begins to render but not burn, if flare ups happen move wings to safe side, repeat until wings are consistently browned with a little char but not burnt.
- Using tongs, remove wings form grill to a sheet pan with a wire rack and arrange them so that they are one layer and not overlapping (depending on how many wings you are making you may need 2 pans).
- Place wings in a 375 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until the internal temperature of the wings reaches 165 degrees.
- Pour a small amount of wing sauce in a bowl and in batches toss wings in sauce, add more sauce and wings till all wings have been coated.
- Serve with some celery sticks, your favorite blue cheese or sprinkle with a good quality crumble blue cheese and enjoy!