Bro or Not Bro: Boneless Buffalo Wings

Editor’s Note: Today, July 29th, is National Wing Day. Here at BroBible, this is a national holiday — Wings are culinary staple in our diets with burgers, beer, and pizza, signifying a certain type of bonding between dudes. “Going for wings” is deeply in our DNA, whether it’s football season or a random Thursday happy hour. In honor of National Wing Day, we decided to republish a post from the very early days of BroBible by a contributor named Chef Evan. He tackles a subject that’s divided many over the years: Are boneless wings *really* wings? Red cups or blue cups in the comments. 

Buffalo wings make up a large part of any dignified bro’s diet. They’re the bridge between the “Spicy” and “Bar Food” sections of the Bro Food Pyramid. The hot, salty, tangy, crunchy, and delicious little morsels of fried chicken perfection drenched in that buttery sauce are enough to make some men eat 50 of them in one sitting. They are synonymous with Sunday Fundays and Super Bowl parties but if I could, I’d eat them every day. When asked me whether Boneless Buffalo Wings were Bro or Not Bro, I had to ring in with my professional opinion.

Boneless Buffalo Wings are decidedly not bro.

One of the greatest aspects about eating chicken wings is that they’re on a bone. Think about when you’re at a beer/food festival, carnival, or any outdoor fun gathering with roasted corn, funnel cake, and smoked turkey legs and how manly you feel gnashing down on that fatty meat, ripping flesh from bone with just your teeth and greased lips. Think about how much more manly a T-bone steak is than a filet mignon.

In addition to pussifying the chicken wing, boneless wings are largely flavorless. In cooking, skin and bone equal flavor. Stock, one of the most flavorful and versatile cooking liquids in the world, is made from bones. Meat cooked on the bone with skin is fattier and just more flavorful, period.

Most boneless wings served at restaurants are nothing but a gussied up, pre-battered, previously frozen chicken tender tossed in a sub-par sauce. This boneless, skinless, lifeless meat has no flavor of its own and is the bane of my culinary existence. The principal flavor of a chicken wing should be chicken accented with a spicy, vinegary, salty sauce, not sauced crunchy breading with some chicken thrown in for texture. The crispiness of a chicken wing comes from the fried out or roasted chicken skin, not a batter or breading.

One of the best things about eating chicken wings is the ability to eat a whole truckload of the f*ckers without really feeling full. Try eating as many boneless wings as regular chicken wings during the day games on Sunday and you’ll spend the entirety of the night game shitting your brains out.

In addition to tasting like asshole, boneless wing are probably worse for you than regular wings. There is one ingredient in chicken wings (other than the stuff coating it): chicken. In frozen, boneless “wings” there are probably ten or more unpronounceable, corn-derived ingredients in the pre-applied batter. Boneless wings have more in common with a McNugget, a Frankenstein-esque food-product rather than actual food. Wendy’s new boneless wings are just their 99 cent nuggets with a sad squirt of sauce. Real chicken wings have skin (not breading), bones, and are bathed in a buffalo sauce of butter and hot sauce (no ranch, garlic parmesan or honey bbq here).

Final ruling: Not Bro.

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