Sweet & Spicy Grilled Wings

with Sriracha

It’s almost the 4th of July here in the good ol’ US of A. That means lots of food, beer, fireworks, and the like. Kramer and I generally try to get the hell out of the city for a few days this time of year. I love the holiday, but this is generally when the humidity has become unbearable and seeing as how we haven’t been out of New York since last summer, we are antsy and ready to go on a real vacation. This year, we’re headed back to the Pacific Northwest. We went to Portland last year and absolutely fell in love with the city, its beaches and parks, and of course, its food. We decided to go a similar route in 2013 and are off to Seattle tomorrow morning! I am so excited, especially because Kramer’s sister Rachel and her fiancé Eric are meeting us up there. I am going to gorge myself on oysters and other seafood, go to all of the markets, and just enjoy being out of the sticky mess that is New York in July. Any suggestions for restaurants, bars or things to do in general? I’m all ears.

Sweet & Spicy Grilled WingsHanging out on the Williamsburg waterfront with some ice cream.

After Seattle, we are headed back to my mother’s motherland, Canada. My grandmother lives just outside of Victoria on Vancouver Island, so we are going to take the ferry over there to visit for the first time since my uncle got married up there over four years ago. My grandma is pretty awesome. She is a great cook, always has baked goods hidden somewhere, and lives right on the harbor in, appropriately named, Sidney. My aunt and I think my cousins will be up there, too, so it will be good to see everyone. We have one more stop in Vancouver after two days in Victoria, where we will again stuff ourselves with seafood and dim sum before flying back to New York, hopefully refreshed and ready to get back to the hustle and bustle. Again, if anyone has suggestions for Victoria or Vancouver, speak up!

Sweet & Spicy Grilled Wings

I wrote this recipe for Business Insider and it was just so damn good that I had to share it with you, too. Kramer and I love wings – they’re one of our favorite late night snacks when coming home from the bar, but we also like to just eat them for dinner alongside a big salad or some grilled or roasted vegetables. We’ve been missing some of our favorite summer staples after over three years in NYC and no direct access to a grill (unless we convince our friends with grills to invite us over), so we’ve been trying to remedy that by grilling indoors on a cast iron griddle. I usually bake wings on weeknights instead of frying them, but I thought, why not grill them, instead? There’s nothing like that charred flavor you get from the grill, but my griddle gets us almost there. These wings use only a few common ingredients and the only step that you need to be mindful of is to marinate them overnight to ensure tender, juicy wings. Surprise your guests with grilled wings and step away from the stove and oven this summer.

Sweet & Spicy Grilled WingsVarious foods, my favorite being the peanut butter and jelly ice cream from Odd Fellows.

Sweet & Spicy Grilled WingsAlright, so – marinate your wings and get ’em on the grill or griddle.

Sweet & Spicy Grilled WingsGrill them on each side until nice and charred.

Sweet & Spicy Grilled WingsThen put them on a baking sheet while you finish up the rest, if you needed to work in batches. Coat in your sauce while you wait.

Sweet & Spicy Grilled WingsEnjoy the grilled goodness.

Sweet & Spicy Grilled Wings
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3-4 as an appetizer/side
Grilled wings with just the right amount of heat and a sweet, sticky sauce.
For the Marinade:
  • 3 pounds chicken wings (whole or separated, either is fine)
  • ¼ cup hot chili oil or Sriracha
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • juice of 1 lemon
For the Sauce:
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 tablespoons hot chili oil or Sriracha
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • juice of ½ a lemon
  1. Combine all of your marinade ingredients in a small bowl. If you are using whole wings, cut a slit in either side of the fatty skin (so they are easier to eat later) — if you are using pre-cut wings, use them as they are. Place the wings in a gallon sized sealable bag or sealable container and pour the marinade of them. Use your hands to be sure that the wings are well coated, then refrigerate overnight.
  2. When you are ready to cook, heat your grill to medium heat (or your indoor griddle to high heat). Place the wings on the flame and cook for 5-8 minutes on each side, depending on how hot your surface is.
  3. While the wings cook, whisk together the sauce ingredients, taste, and adjust seasonings as necessary. If you want the sauce to be spicier, add more hot chili oil or Sriracha. If you want it to be sweeter, add more honey and/or lemon juice. When the wings are nice and charred, toss in the sauce and serve hot. These can be made a day or two ahead of time, if you like, then placed in the oven under the broiler or on the grill to quickly reheat and serve.


17 Responses

  1. Have an awesome trip! I love wings as well and I don’t have to share because my husband won’t eat them :) These look delicious.

  2. Zoe says:

    I hope you have a fun time here in Seattle. Our heat wave just ended and the weather is PERFECT right now.

  3. Katehrine says:

    If you want some delicious and cheap Chinese food in Vancouver, Lin’s on Broadway and Granville has the most amazing juicy pork dumplings (they win awards!), ginger beef, and spicy green beans!!!

  4. Mindy says:

    Um, yes please.

  5. Tieghan says:

    I want!!

    These look awesome. I love the heat!

  6. Well, first of all, have an awesome trip. I hope you eat all the seafood and dimsum you can handle, maybe wash it down with a few drinks – for balance. Secondly, oh no you didn’t put Sriracha on these chicken wings.

  7. Mike says:

    Hi Sydney – longtime fan of your blog and former Vancouver resident. I can vouch for Lin’s on Broadway half a block west of Granville, their dumplings are amazing. I’m certainly not a dim sum expert, but my friend from Hong Kong took me to a place on Columbia & Keefer (top floor of a red building that looks like a parking garage on the NE corner of the street – “Something Seafood Restaurant”) which she assured me was very authentic. There’s also an amazing Vietnamese/Cambodian restaurant, Phnom Penh, with a distinctive red awning also in Chinatown on Georgia half a block east of Main but I imagine you can get better Cambodian food in New York anyway. I also feel silly telling a New Yorker this but Vancouver’s Chinatown is only a few blocks away from the worst neighbourhood in Vancouver, the infamous Downtown Eastside which has been blighted by severe drug and poverty issues for decades, so be careful.

    I used to live right on Commercial Drive in the east end – there are many tasty bars and restaurants so it’s nice to walk down the strip stopping in for a drink wherever looks nice – Havana is quite trendy but they deserve their reputation. Be prepared to have a heart attack when you see how much everything costs in Canada – it will be even more jarring on Vancouver island where food prices are ridiculous.

    The main draws of Vancouver and the Island are that there’s nature everywhere so make sure to get out there – the plant and animal life is quite different than out east.

  8. NicoleD says:

    Ah good ol’ B.C! Lets see…in Victoria I’d say you should visit Cafe Bliss and in Vancouver check out Save-On Meats on East Hastings and The Flying Pig in Gastown. Seriously.

  9. Nicole says:

    Japadogs in Vancouver for sureee.

  10. Jason and I are huge wing lovers too! I love your grilled version here, and that Sriracha sauce is to die for! I honestly won’t turn down anything involving Sriracha!

  11. Lynna says:

    These wings look great. My friends and I always like eating wings for dinner. Haha. I was in Seattle and Portland 2 weeks ago! Definitely go to Pike Public Market place. There are so many shops and food places to eat at…I just kept buying food! I had to Yelp and look at the ratings of the restaurants nearby to select which shops to buy.

  12. Elizabeth says:

    I love sriracha, so using it plus the honey for this chicken sounds so incredible!

  13. Minnie says:

    Red Wagon in Vancouver – pulled pork pancakes!! You won’t be disappointed. 2296 East Hastings Street

  14. Tanya says:

    I actually went to Winderlea winery last year because of you! I live in Toronto but spent time in Victoria and Vancouver. So many fantastic places in both cities but these are just a FEW suggestions:
    Victoria: Stage Wine Bar (great small plates), Brasserie L’Ecole (excellent French food), Irish Times Pub (fun, sometimes loud, LOTS of beer), Fol Epi Bakery (wonderful place!). Please try Driftwood Ale beer (available at many places in Victoria and Van Island). Also, near Sidney, is the Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse. Of course, there is the Inner Harbour downtown – Red Fish, Blue Fish you can eat seafood on the dock. Canoe Brewery is fun too. Check out Lojo for local boutique shopping. So many places…:)
    Vancouver: Vij’s (or Rangoli is Vikram Vij’s smaller place), Granville Market (huge food market), Gastown has tons of great restos/bars, Rodney’s Oyster Bar (Yaletown) Main St./Commercial St. full of cool places to shop/eat. If you’re feeling fit do the Grouse Grind. It’s tough but the view from Grouse Mountain is fantastic – you can also take the gondola up if you like. Have fun! Seattle is wonderful too.
    Love your blog!

  15. those are my old stompin’ grounds you are visiting!
    just a few suggestions for ya:
    molly moons ice cream (get a strawberry balsamic scoop with lemon curd on top)
    baguette box sandwiches (get a lemongrass beef, or spicy crunchy chicken baguette and thai ices tea)

    best coffee = 29th parallel, but the spanish coffee (with condensed milk) at cafe artisiano is also bomb.
    also, hapa izakaya is seriously good. get the lotus root dumplings (aka renkon gyoza tempura)
    if you want drinks on the water, hit up the sandbar on granville island. get the wok squid – yum!

    enjoy your trip!

  16. Wings and a honey sriracha sauce? Sold. I wonder if ground fresh red chilies would work for this.

  17. Teri says:

    Just finished having these for dinner. They were great. We had them with potato salad. We will definitely have them again.

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