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BAKED Hot Wings…crispy and slightly caramelized, yet moist

This post was written by my foodie sister Robin, who is now sharing all of her favorite recipes and kitchen tips regularly on the new “Make It and Love It – in the KITCHEN” portion of this blog. Try a few of her recipes…your belly will thank you! -Ashley

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I ran the back kitchen of a little steak restaurant back in college and this Hot Wing recipe was a quick and really simple appetizer that many customers and employees both LOVED.  It’s funny how something so simple was so popular.  Simple = good, I guess. :)  Just be sure to keep some napkins nearby because these guys are perfectly crisp and slightly caramelized on the outside — but incredibly juicy on the inside.  And the best part, no messy oil was used to fry them up.  (I’ll share a few tips below, to avoid chewy/blah hot wings.)


Hot Wings seem to be everyone’s favorite sweet/spicy party appetizer…….and now you can whip them up without hardly any effort.  In fact, weren’t you trying to think of something easy to make this weekend for dinner? :)




Let me share a few Hot Wing tips…..and a really SIMPLE recipe.



Shopping List

  • 2 lbs chicken Wings 
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1 1/2 TBS Valentina Hot sauce



Yep, this is all you need.  No joke!



Traditionally, chicken wings are fried but for me I don’t like to smell like fryer oil or have it linger in my house, so I opt for baking them.  And seriously, they taste just as fantastic.  Here are a few tips:


If the chicken is raw and you are baking them in the oven, a good tip is to boil them before baking them. This will help make them crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside (just as if they were fried but with out the extra oil). To do so, bring 4 quarts of water and 2 Tablespoons of salt to boil and add the wings.  Boil for 8-10 minutes.  Strain out the water and make sure the wings are dry before popping them in the oven.   Drying them is essential in order to make them crispy.  Use a paper towel to dab and soak up the excess water. 


Then, line the pan with aluminum foil for easy cleanup.  Do not use parchment paper or you will end up with soggy wings. Place the chicken on the foil, keeping the chicken from touching one another.  Cook in a preheated 425 degree (F) oven for 35-40 minutes, or until done (may vary, depending on wing size).



In a large metal bowl, and while your chicken is baking, mix together the honey and hot sauce to have ready to go when the wings come out of the oven (or fryer, if you wish).



Now, not all hot sauces are created equal.  Some of these are found in the barbeque sauce section and some are in the international foods section.  In my supermarket, Valentina hot sauce was located in the international food section.  When I pulled this together, I was trying to remember what hot sauce I used back when I ran that restaurant kitchen back in college.  My first try was the Tapatio hot sauce you see in the background.  It wasn’t quite right.  It was missing something and it was a little saltier and spicier from what I remember.  (Don’t get me wrong, I like spicy food, but I have participated in a Hot Wing Challenge at the local pizza joint, and well, I really have no desire to lose my taste buds again for several days.)


After this mess-up, I was on the hunt to nail down the sauce from what I remembered.  It was just two ingredients, honey and a hot sauce.  I tried the buffalo wing sauce and it was too much vinegar.  Testing out the others, I finally found what it was –Valentina.  If you can’t find this, the Franks Hot sauce came in second (which is a lot more common in stores).  After I found and tasted Valentina, the other hot sauces just did not cut it for me.




Now you have the sauce ready to go. 


Once the chicken is done……you want to throw them into the sauce IMMEDIATELY.  Because right away, it will start cooking the sauce right into the wings and the sauce will start to caramelize and mmmmmmm, nothing better! 



Toss the chicken around really well, making sure all the wings are coated. 




Place on a platter and serve. 

(Ranch or Blue Cheese dressing are both a great side for dipping.)








Hot Wings – Recipe Card


  • 2 lbs chicken Wings 
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1 1/2 TBS Valentina Hot sauce




 Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Bring 4 qts of water to a boil in a large pot.  Add 2 Tbs salt to the water. Drop your chicken wings into the water and boil for 8-10 minutes.  Drain the chicken in a colander.  Place the chicken on paper towels and pat completely dry. Place on cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until done (varies depending on size).  Meanwhile, mix together the honey and hot Sauce in a large metal bowl.  Once chicken is completely baked, place in the bowl with the sauce immediately.  Toss wings into the sauce until evenly coated.  Serve on a plate with Blue Cheese or Ranch dressing.  Enjoy!




Ashley Johnston

Administrator at Make It & Love It
Ashley Johnston is a professional DIY costume maker, sewist, crafter, and owner of Make It & Love It. She is a mom of 5 and a wife to a very patient (with the craft clutter) husband. In case you’re wondering, she always chooses crafting/sewing/designing over mopping/dusting/wiping base boards……but bathrooms/laundry/full bellies are always attended to. Whew!

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Hi, I'm Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley—the DIY-enthusiast behind this crazy blog!

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