Pie, be damned! We’re making pumpkin pie chicken wings.
When you think about it, the pumpkin is a sly creature. He lurks silently on the vine throughout the summer, gaining strength and waiting for just the right moment to attack. He then takes control of the month of October as the major player in our Halloween festivities. Don’t be fooled by his carved out smiley face; his conquest has only just begun.
Once he seizes October, he sets his sights on November and the Thanksgiving holidays. He knows any resistance to his delicious pies is futile. If that’s not enough, the greedy little squash also wants some Christmas action! He bombards us with breads, bars and various desserts which are all reinforced by his powerful arsenal of pies.
It’s evident that the pumpkin’s dominance is overwhelming. As a wise man once stated, “If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.” So we’ll join ’em by making pumpkin pie chicken wings.
The sweetness and spices of pumpkin pie really pair well with the flavor of chicken. Imagine adding a bit of heat factor into the mix. I believe this combination could be the making of perfect holiday chicken wings.
We’ll use canned pumpkin so we can enjoy pumpkin pie chicken wings all year long. No need to wait for that sneaky pumpkin to leave the vine.
- 2 pounds chicken wings, cut into sections if desired
- 1-1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon salt (small grain)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper*
- 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
- 1/4 cup dark brown corn syrup
- 1/4 cup chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper*
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- In a small mixing bowl, combine rub ingredients and whisk until well blended.
- Liberally dust all sides of the wings with rub. Lightly pat to assure adhesion.
- Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper or aluminum foil, lightly greased with cooking spray. Place wings on the prepared baking sheet, keeping each wing from touching one another. Do not crowd.
- Place wings, uncovered in the refrigerator for at least an hour or up to 12 hours. Our goal here is to allow the wings to dry out a bit which will result in crispier skin. If going long term, flip the wings a couple of times. If time is an issue, wings can be cooked right away.
- Place the oven's rack in the center and preheat to 400°F (204°C).
- Bake wings for 20 minutes. Remove and flip wings over. Return to the oven and continue to cook for another 20 minutes. Wings are done when cooked through and golden brown or an instant-read meat thermometer registers 165°F (74°C). If all else fails, one wing must be sacrificed and taste tested by the cook. I do that regardless.
- While the wings are cooking, combine all sauce ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Whisk until well blended. Taste and add additional cayenne pepper if more heat is preferred.
- Remove wings from oven and brush with sauce. Return to oven for 5 minutes.
- After 5 minutes, remove and brush again with sauce. Serve immediately.