Crispy buffalo wings at home?
April 12, 2007 5:08 PM   Subscribe

How can I make buffalo wings at home and get them to be crispy without frying?

I really love buffalo wings and I want to try and make them at home. I have purchased the wings and Frank's buffalo wings sauce and I'm ready to go. I plan on brining the wings first for a few hours to get them nice and salty and get a lot of the blood out.

My concern is this - I like my wings to be crispy on the outside and I don't have a deep fryer so I'd like to bake the wings. How can I get them to be crispy? Should I sear the outside of the wings in a frying pan before baking?

Any other suggestions?
posted by monarch75 to Food & Drink (14 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Bake 'em on a grill or rack-like device, so the fat is dripping away from them. Then broil 'em for a brief spell.
posted by frogan at 5:20 PM on April 12, 2007

Best answer: You might try baking 'em until the sauce has firmed a bit, then brush a little oil on 'em and bake (or broil as frogan suggests), briefly, at a higher temp.
posted by lekvar at 5:36 PM on April 12, 2007

Broiling is awesome; make sure the skin side is up. You might try marinating the wings in the sauce for a few hours (instead of the brine) before cooking, in an effort to eliminate the need to put sauce on during the cooking process (because anything wet is going to naturally reduce crispiness).

Also, you haven't mentioned whether or not you want breading. Cornstarch is good for this, as are busted-up tortilla chips.

Man, now I'm all hungry again ...
posted by jbickers at 5:45 PM on April 12, 2007

this is how I make buffalo wings:
  1. bake wings in oven on a broiler pan to keep them out of the grease crispy. take them out of the oven.
  2. mix about 1/4 cup frank's sauce with about a tablesponn of melted butter
  3. sautee about 10-12 wings in a mediu sized pan with about 1/2 the sauce. mix in the sauce and toss until the wings are coated and the sauce has heated up.

posted by cosmicbandito at 5:46 PM on April 12, 2007 [3 favorites]

Also, you haven't mentioned whether or not you want breading. Cornstarch is good for this, as are busted-up tortilla chips.

Buffalo wings should NOT have breading! There is nothing more disappointing to me than ordering wings and finding bready gunk all over them.
posted by stefnet at 5:49 PM on April 12, 2007

You could pan fry them for a short time and then bake/broil them to finish them off. That should get the skin nice and crispy with the appropriate level of doneness.

Of course, if you have a big pot you could just get a metric buttload of vegetable oil and deep fry them on the stove.
posted by backseatpilot at 5:56 PM on April 12, 2007

I make mine on the Weber, with a packet of soaked wood chips on the coals. Mm-mm, they're good that way!
posted by ottereroticist at 6:52 PM on April 12, 2007

I dredge in savoury flour mix (flour + salt + paprika + whatever I feel like) and bake on a rack. I use a pastry brush to baste with some of the rendered fat part-way through. The skin comes out crackly.

But yeah, you can deep fry in a saucepan or pot. You just need tongs or a metal slotted spoon to fish the goodies out of the oil. Typical temperature for deep frying is when a cube of white bread turns golden brown in 30 seconds.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 8:35 PM on April 12, 2007

Please please watch for fire if you're deep frying with a pan of oil on the stove. It's not an unsafe activity, if you keep your head about you. Do not leave unattended, even for just 30 seconds, and have a fire extinguisher for grease fire nearby.
posted by defcom1 at 7:10 AM on April 13, 2007

I used to have a recipe that called for mixing the sauce and melted butter, then dipping the wings in that and baking/broiling. I'll look and see if I can find it online, that is where I got it in the first place
posted by birdlady at 7:24 AM on April 13, 2007

I've always done them in the stove. Set the temp at 425 and let it preheat for at least 30 minutes. Lay the wings out skin side down on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Cook them for 10 minutes, then flip so the skin side is up.
Cook another 5 minutes, then crank up your broiler. Watch the wings so they don't burn. When they look brown and crispy, take them out. You can toss them with Franks and butter, or just drizzle them with tabasco.
posted by Eddie Mars at 7:40 AM on April 13, 2007

Also if you are deep frying on the stove make sure you have a deep heavy pot (a cast iron dutch over works great for this, and is generally pretty cheap if you look in the right place) and make sure that you fill it no more then 1/3 of the way with oil. Also when deep frying dont crowd the pan, trust me on that.
posted by BobbyDigital at 7:43 AM on April 13, 2007

Best answer: Finishing under the broiler is going to be crucial. Ideally you want a gas oven with a real broiler that'll let you hold the wings a few inches from the flame.

I imagine, too, that you'll want to add the sauce after you bake them, not before as some are suggesting. Real wings have a puddle of goopy sauce surrounding them, not a hard glaze baked into the skin.
posted by nebulawindphone at 8:27 AM on April 13, 2007

Since you're brining them, be sure to let them dry out afterwards in your fridge overnight, or else you'll never get the skin crispy (they'll just go from soggy to burnt).
posted by J-Train at 8:52 AM on April 13, 2007

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