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Chickens can’t actually fly with them but so many people still have a great appreciation for their wings–especially when it comes to International Chicken Wing Day!

This is the day to enjoy, appreciate and celebrate everything that has to do with chicken wings, so get ready to observe International Chicken Wing Day.

History of International Chicken Wing Day

Historical records have shown that chickens were raised in China and Southeast Asia as long as 10,000 years ago, but people weren’t yet eating them–they were raised to be used in cockfights.

Evidence found of an ancient city in Israel does show that chickens were likely kept there for food, probably between 200 and 400 BC. But the enjoyment of chickens on a large scale in Europe seems to not have appeared until around the first century BC.

Of course, eating the wings of the chicken is a different experience than eating other parts. But it has certainly been enjoyed for many centuries. In fact, the oldest recipe for chicken wings that has been uncovered comes from China in 750 AD, known as the Imperial Consort Chicken Wing.

Chicken wings in Indonesia are marinated in tamarind and other spices and then braised in coconut water before serving. Most Mexican grocers provide their patrons with canned chipotle chiles in adobo, which makes a perfect sauce for fiery chipotle chicken wings. Those traveling to Japan would likely find chicken wings that are marinated in sake and sansho pepper, served with freshly squeezed lemon juice.

It wasn’t until 1964 that the idea for cooking spicy Buffalo wings came to America. Perhaps it should be noted that buffalo do not, in fact, have wings. Instead, Buffalo wings are named for the city in which they were first created: Buffalo, New York, USA. Their spicy sauce often comes in grades of heat from mild to “insanity”.

Eating chicken has grown in popularity over the centuries, for a variety of reasons. But in 2014 in the United States, a place that has usually preferred beef over chicken, the consumption of chicken surpassed that of beef. This may have to do with affordability as well as the fact that Americans are becoming more health conscious, but it also could have to do with the popularity of chicken wings!

So whether enjoying chicken wings cooked in Chinese style, Buffalo style, Indonesian style or some other way, International Chicken Wing Day is all about appreciating this tasty part of the chicken.

International Chicken Wing Day Timeline

750 AD

First recipe for chicken wings

Related to a love story between an Emperor and his mistress, the Imperial Consort Chicken Wing recipe is the first in history to be documented.[1]


Buffalo wings are invented

In the town of Buffalo, New York, a restaurant owner makes up a last minute recipe to feed her son and his group of friends.[2]


First International Chicken Wing Day is celebrated 

Proud of the impression his city had made on the world with its wings, the Mayor of Buffalo, Stan Makowski, makes International Chicken Wing Day official.[3]


Buffalo Wild Wings opens for business 

In the midwestern city of Columbus, Ohio, Buffalo Wild Wings starts near the campus of Ohio State University.[4]


Record for Most Buffalo Wings Eaten 

At the Philadelphia Wing Bowl, this record by Molly Schulyer is set for eating 501 wings in 30 minutes.[5]

How to Celebrate International Chicken Wing Day

Observe International Chicken Wing Day in a variety of ways, like trying out some of these ideas:

Go Out to a Restaurant for Chicken Wings

Grab a few friends and head out to a restaurant or bar that serves Buffalo wings, Chinese chicken wings or some other style, this is a great time to order a bucket, plate or platter and dig right in.

In the US, those searching for the American style Buffalo wings might find them at one of these places:

  • Wingstop. With tons of flavors and bold dry rubs, like garlic parmesan and lemon pepper, as well as sauces from mild to “atomic”, Wingstop has delicious offerings for just about anyone’s preferences at their more than 1300 locations throughout the US, Asia, Europe and Central America.
  • Buffalo Wild Wings. Started in 1982, this is one of the oldest wing chains in the US. With more than 1200 locations, try unique flavors like Mango Habanero, Teriyaki or Honey BBQ.
  • Zaxby’s. This chicken chain originating in the southern US offers fast food with great taste. Try Teriyaki, Wimpy, Hot Honey Mustard, Sweet Spicy, Nuclear and Insane.
  • Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC). Sure, they didn’t start out selling only the wings, but KFC has been in the business for a long time. Kentucky Fried Wings come in several flavors and can be found in their impressive 25,000 restaurants all throughout the world.

Try Making Chicken Wings at Home

International Chicken Wing Day seems like the ideal time to try out some new recipes for making chicken wings at home. Grab a couple of pounds of wings from the grocery store, invite some friends or family members over, and get started on making some new recipes for wings.

Whether breaded, marinated, or covered in sauce, a wing-making adventure is sure to please. It might even be fun to have guests bring their favorite version of barbecue sauce or hot sauce to have a taste test and share preferences together.

Learn Fun Facts About Chicken Wings

If International Chicken Wing Day is all about celebrating this delicious food, then maybe friends or coworkers will be impressed when you share these tidbits of chicken wing trivia with them:

  • A record for the most chicken wings eaten in 30 minutes was set in 2018 by Molly Schulyer when she ate 501 chicken wings.

  • Chicken bones can be deadly. Several people have died due to choking on chicken bones or getting them lodged in their throats. Be careful!

  • Buffalo wings gained popularity due to the Buffalo Bills, an American football team who made it to the Super Bowl four times in a row.

Get Adventurous with Wing Sauce

Although it is certainly not the only way to eat chicken wings, spicy sauce is many people’s favorite. But there are so many types of sauces to choose from that a person could spend a lot of time just trying them. Perhaps this could become a hobby for a chicken wing lover?

International Chicken Wing Day is a great time to get started trying out all sorts of different flavors of sauce. Some of the wing restaurants mentioned above even make their own sauces available in bottles at their restaurants or at local grocery stores.

The most adventurous and hard core wing eaters might get bragging rights for trying the hottest of the hot sauces. For instance, Zaxby’s has a hot sauce called “Nuclear”. Buffalo Wild Wings has been known to offer their wings served up with “Blazin’ Carolina Reaper” sauce. And Wingstop’s hottest sauce is simply referred to as “Atomic”.

International Chicken Wing Day FAQs

Are chicken wings healthy?

Chicken wings can be part of a healthy diet, particularly when they are baked and not fried. They’re almost completely carb free. Just be careful not to over indulge![1]

Can chicken wings be cooked from frozen?

Yes, chicken wings can be cooked from frozen in an instant pot, air fryer or baked in the oven.

Do chicken wings have gluten?

In themselves, chicken wings do not have gluten but, if they are breaded, then they might contain gluten.[2]

Are chicken wings white meat?

Yes, chicken wings are considered to be white meat.[3]

Should chicken wings be marinated?

Although they don’t have to be, chicken wings that are marinated have a great flavor.

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