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13 September 2019

Ask the Experts: How to Eat Chicken Wings

When you're ripping into your wings, have you ever stopped to think that there might be a method to the madness? That there might be a proper, time-honored way to eat the flats and drumettes, both for speed and mess-minimizing?

If so, then you've come to the right place. We spoke with our very own Chef Dan about the proper way to eat Buffalo Wings & Rings' popular chicken wings.

What's the Proper Way to Eat Chicken Wings?

Chef Dan admits that there's a lot of hub-bub going on around the proper way to eat things — including chicken wings. "Everyone has an opinion on this," he says. "There's a method of breaking the traditional wing [the flat] in half, and eating one half at a time, then you [can more easily] eat the drummy which has just the one bone."

To more succinctly summarize his preferred method, he recommends watching this episode of the Cooking Channel's "You're Eating It Wrong," in which host Dan Pashman and professional competitive eater Crazy Legs Conti identify the most efficient ways to go about eating chicken wings.

Spoiler alert: There are two options.

  1. Crazy Legs prefers the "meat umbrella" method, in which you unsheath the entire flat down to one end with one hand, and pop the meat in your mouth like some kind of strange chicken lollipop.
  2. Dan likes to separate the bones, pulling off the smaller bone first, thus allowing him to more easily eat all the meat off just one bone.

That's not to say you can't enjoy your wings your way. Clean them down to the bone in one bite, peck into them daintily like a little bird, or heck, cut them with a knife and fork if you must. As Chef Dan says, "You can eat them however you like, just don't throw the bones on the floor."

Tips & Tricks for Wing Eating

  • Eat one wing at a time. We feel like this goes without saying, but unless you are a Crazy Legs Conti-level professional eater, it's okay to go at your own tempo and work through your wing-eating method one flat and one drumette at a time.
  • Wipe during, wipe after, but please wipe. Whether you like to clean your fingers and mouth after each wing or wait until your hands and face are covered with sauce like a baby eating spaghetti, it's appropriate — dare we say mandatory — that you clean up after yourself. That's what those packets of moist wipes are for after all. And if you run out? Ask nicely and your server will gladly bring you some more.
  • Set the ground rules. Are you sharing bowls of wings or did you order your own? Make sure everyone knows whose wings are whose before you start eating to avoid any arguments or hurt feelings. Remember this is restaurant wing eating, not the Old West.
  • No double-dipping. If you're sharing wings with anyone other than your significant other or children (and maybe not even then), under no circumstances are you allowed to double dip your wings or celery in the condiments. And none of that, "It's not double-dipping if I dipped both sides separately" nonsense either.

No matter how you choose to handle your wings or wipe your face, just know you'll find wings that are worth the effort the next time you order up at your local Buffalo Wings & Rings.