I'm pretty much a traditionalist when it comes to sauced chicken wings. I usually stick to buffalo sauce, but sometimes my taste buds crave something different. That's when the kitchen conjuring begins!
I decided to go all out for spooky season and create a wing sauce that brought together the best fall flavors while keeping it somewhat classic. Flavor wise, this sauce is sweet and spicy with a little bit of PSL vibes. As a wing traditionalist, I'm very happy with the results.
While I branched out for the sauce, I'm keeping it classic with my usual method of baking in the oven to produce a crispy chicken wing. Fortunately, there are all types of kitchen gadgets on the market now, so feel free to deep fry, air fry, grill or whatever other method floats your boat. I won't judge if you end up tossing store bought wings or cauliflower in the sauce.
Hot Honey Sweet Potato Wings
2 lbs. chicken wings
For the Rub
1 tbsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. black pepper
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
½ tsp. ground cumin
½ tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. smoked paprika
For the Sauce
¼ c. (½ stick) salted butter
½ tsp. grated ginger
¼ c. hot honey
½ c. blended or finely pureed sweet potatoes
1 tsp. orange zest
½ tsp. smoked paprika
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
Pinch of cinnamon
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
If not using the oven bake method, just omit the baking powder and season the wings with the rest of the rub ingredients.
The hot honey I used was medium spice, so if you have a spicier brand you're using, start with ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper and adjust to your desired spice level.
Don't have a sweet potato to cook and blend? Pick up organic pureed sweet potatoes from the baby food section. It might be taboo for adults to eat baby food, but I promise it won't hurt this one time.
The wing sauce can be made ahead of time if you want to cut down on steps.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20-30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Yield: 4-6 servings
Special Equipment: Small bowl, large bowl, baking sheet, wire cooling rack, small saucepan and blender (optional).
Adjust your oven rack to the lower-middle position and preheat your oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place a wire rack on top and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
Use paper towels to pat the wings as dry as you can. Now place them in a large bowl.
In a small, whisk together baking powder, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, cumin, garlic, and paprika. Sprinkle the rub over the wings and toss to evenly coat.
Arrange wings in single layer on prepared wire rack. Bake until wings are crispy and internal temperature reaches 165°F. I bought party sized wings, so they took about 25 minutes in my oven. It may take longer if you're using whole wings or larger wings.
While the wings are cooking, melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the ginger and cook for 1 minute. Now add the honey, sweet potato puree, orange zest, paprika, cayenne, and cinnamon to the sauce pan. Bring to a simmer, then turn down to low heat and cook for about 10 minutes, or until flavors come together. Just before turning off the heat, add the vinegar and adjust for seasoning.
Remove wings from oven and let stand for 5 minutes. Transfer wings to a large bowl and toss with sauce.
Serve with ranch or blue cheese dressing and enjoy!