The Anchor Bar in Buffalo, New York is renowned as the birthplace of the Buffalo wing. In the mid-1960s, legend has it, bar owner Teressa Bellissimo first served them to her son and his friends after hours as the creative result of a mistaken food shipment. Who would’ve guessed Buffalo wings would eventually become the quintessential bar food and a staple in homes around the nation? As the recipes surely evolved, so did our curiosities. What makes a Buffalo wing a true Buffalo wing, and when is it just a chicken wing in a different brand of hot sauce?
The basic recipe for Buffalo wings (or just “wings,” as the locals call them) comes down to a few must-haves: cayenne pepper hot sauce, butter and deep fried chicken wings. Various colleagues from the Buffalo region boast about the tweaks they’ve made to the classic that set their wings apart from the rest. Some add more or less butter to control the heat, others use grass-fed butter to maximize creaminess, and some add cayenne pepper or garlic powder to boost the flavor quotient.
The Western New York natives in the office decided to have a chicken wing cook off to prove once and for all who has the best Buffalo wing recipe. Here’s what we found: there are alterations you can make here or there, but as long as the basis of your recipe is the same, it’ll be delicious. (Though if you ask Matt – a Duff’s man – he’ll adamantly argue just a pinch of garlic powder is key. I think it’s tasty either way.)
In the end, we settled on this recipe as our favorite because it was easy, accessible and crowd-pleasing. We encourage you to play with the flavors because, in the end, you may agree with Matt after all. Let us know in the comments how you like to prepare your Buffalo chicken wings.
Do you use Frank’s Red Hot? Do you add any crazy ingredients or spices? We’d love to hear about it!
Buffalo Chicken Wings
- 24 chicken wings
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1 cup hot pepper sauce (see Notes)
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- Heat oil in deep fryer to 375°F.
- Place 1 layer of wings into the fryer basket and carefully lower basket into the preheated oil. Deep fry chicken wings in oil until done, about 10 minutes. Remove from fryer, drain on paper towels.
- In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Add hot sauce and garlic powder. Stir until blended.
- Add fried chicken wings to sauce and stir over low heat to coat. The longer the wings simmer in the sauce, the spicier they will be. Remove from sauce and serve while warm.
The classic Buffalo Chicken Wings recipe calls for Franks® Red Hot® Cayenne Pepper Sauce which is the brand we used when testing this recipe.
Hamilton Beach® Deep Fryers are generously sized for greater versatility — some even accommodating a whole chicken. What’s more, you can fry crispy, mouth-watering foods without the mess you’ve come to expect.
Franks red hot buffalo sauce half a cup of apple cider vinegar and 1 stick of butter.
Edward, I haven’t tried that combo, and apple cider vinegar didn’t come up during our trials. I’m going to have to give it a shot – sounds delicious. Thanks for sharing!
I use Frank’s red hut wing sauce 12oz with 1/4 cup honey 1 stick buttet heat blended till butter and honey is well blended (simmer only)
I use Franks Red hot, butter,and a pinch of granulated garlic..Difference is I bake off my wings and then coat them! Deelish!!
I use Granks, butter, and a pinch of granulated garlic…difference is I bake them and then coat! Deelish!