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  • Writer's pictureNatalie Wilkinson

Smoky Grilled Wings

I don't know about anyone else, but I absolutely check the weather forecast when making my weekly menu. Rainy and chilly? Soup and sandys. Crisp and sunny? Make-ahead oven dish to allow for maximum outdoor play time. Well consider my delight when I saw 75+ degrees and clear skies for the latter half of this week. It's only been two days of cold rain, and I am aching for the warm sun on my face (I know, I'm in for some disappointment heading into November).

But I won't think about that right now. What I am thinking about is grilling. Some. WINGS. Crispy, a little bit of char and unbelievably juicy, I won't prepare wings another way again. These actually happened because of a last minute get-together a few years ago. Football was on our deck TV, the sun was shining, and I hated the idea of standing in the kitchen while my friends were outside. So I tested out grilling my wings, and never went back.

Feel free to sub some of the other spices if you don't have them, but the smoked paprika and lemon zest are key if you want an absolute flavor blast in your mouth. You can make the rub the day before and add in the lemon zest day of, or I've also made and tossed the day before, and kept the wings in a tight sealing container until ready to grill. I wouldn't do more than 1 day ahead of time. Dipping sauce can be made 1-2 days ahead.

Fire up those grills! We all miss our friends, and this is a perfectly easy recipe to throw together when the weather is right for an outdoor get-together.



For the rub:

-Zest from (2) lemons

-1 T smoked paprika

-1 T onion powder

-1 T garlic powder

-1 T freshly ground salt

-2 tsp dried thyme

-1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne, to taste (omit for mild flavor)

For the dipping sauce:

-1/4 cup mayo

-1/4 cup plain greek yogurt or sour cream

-1 T mustard (Dijon or stone ground)

-2 tsp freshly grated (or prepared) horseradish

-1 T hot sauce

-2 T snipped chives

-Juice from 1 lemon

-1/4 cup crumbled feta, blue cheese or Gorgonzola


Combine all ingredients for the rub in a small bowl or in a large zip lock bag. Stir or shake to combine, and toss with 2 dozen split wings or 1 dozen whole wings*.

Light grill to high heat. I like to start with a higher heat to get a nice char on the skin and seal in the juices, and then turn to medium low to finish the cooking process. Depending on the size of your wings, you should be on grill duty with these guys for 25-30 minutes.

If you don't have access to a grill, bake in a 400 degree oven for 30 minutes, and finish on low broil or a grill pan.

If you have been gifted with the ability to multitask, whip up your dipping sauce while your wingys are grilling. Combine all ingredients until well mixed.

Ok, I guess that wasn't that complicated. You can handle it!

Pile your achingly beautiful, perfectly charred wings on a big platter, with pre-portioned dipping sauces (because COVID) and await applause.

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Nov 04, 2020

Those wings have inspired me Ponkles. I’ll make them over the fire pit for this Friday’s movie night!

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