Thai Sweet Chili Chicken Wings
Chicken wings have become a celebrated part of our culinary landscape. Created in Buffalo, NY, in 1964, chicken wings were mainly local to New York State bar menus until the mid-1980s. But it’s hard to keep a good food secret and the ‘80s saw chicken wings, deep-fried and tossed in a spicy pepper sauce, explode into restaurants, first across the USA and then around the world.
Since taking the appetizer world by storm, wings have been reinvented thousands of times, reflecting regional flavor preferences and cooking styles—they’ve been tossed in jerk seasoning and grilled, fried with Nashville Hot Chicken Seasoning, and baked in a spicy Korean-style paste. Wings have become a blank slate, an open door that welcomes the innovative chef.
This is what our test kitchen kept in mind while working with our Sweet Thai Chili Seasoning. While most of us have at least a passing familiarity with the sweet, sticky dipping sauce that inspired our seasoning blend, the question remained what to do with an all-new blend once we’d made it? We chose wings. With their nearly universal appeal, everyone seems willing to try them, even if they might know exactly what’s on them. What better way to introduce a new product than by presenting it on something much beloved?
This recipe is about as easy to make as a recipe gets. Dry chicken wings with a lint-free towel to give the seasoning a surface it can really stick to. Let the wings sit in the rub for about an hour in the fridge. Then preheat the oven, and bake. You don’t need to oil anything because the fat from the skin will create its own oil while roasting, keeping the meat juicy. Can you make this with boneless chicken tenders? Yes, but since those are usually skinless they’ll dry out faster during baking. Make sure you get skin-on chicken or give them a healthy coating of oil before putting them in the oven. The finishing glaze made with Thai Sweet Chili Sauce amplifies the flavors already present in the seasoning. It can be easily prepared while the wings are baking, and when you add that extra boost of sweet and sour heat you take your wings to the next level of greatness. The biggest problem you’ll have will be making enough of these wings, because everybody’s going back for seconds. Or thirds.
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
2. Thoroughly dry chicken wings with a kitchen towel.
3. Combine Thai Sweet Chili Seasoning and baking powder and thoroughly season the wings. Let wings sit in the rub to absorb flavors, for at least 15 minutes and up to one hour in the refrigerator.
4. Cook wings in a 400°F oven on an oven-proof baking rack, positioned over a baking sheet to catch drips, for 35 minutes, until crispy all over. Remove from the oven.
5. Brush Thai Sweet Chili Glaze onto wings, return to the oven, and cook for 10 to 15 minutes until golden brown.