chicken wings

Red Rub Chicken Wings

The first few years we lived in Mexico, we began to notice that at social gatherings with the group of friends we had met, we would often see the same things on the table: guacamole, tacos, chicken wings.  It also seemed that everybody had the same recipe for chicken wings, and I thought maybe said group of friends all shared this sauce recipe and I was the only one who was left out.   I eventually learned that the grocery stores here sold them with this marinade on it.  Trouble was, I wasn’t a big fan of the marinade.  I thought, no biggie, I’ll just go and make my own sauce/rub/marinade.

I couldn’t find chicken wings that weren’t marinated.  FOR YEARS.  Finally, when what I am sure was the one millionth time I asked for ‘alitas natural’, one of the deli guys said ‘Si’ and I almost passed out.  But wait, it’ll probably cost an arm and a leg.  Anything new that’s catered to foreigners usually costs more than what the locals regularly purchase.  Wrong.  They were cheeeeeeap.  I think I bought 100 that day I was so excited and was afraid it was a mistake so bought as many as the store would allow me.

Chicken wings are readily available ‘natural’ now, although they only provide so many in a day.  That means if you’re going in on a big American football day, forget it, all the foreigners have snapped them all up.  They fact that they are so cheap and everybody loves them, make them a popular item to bring to any event.

A friend of ours from Canada who used to live here directed us to this red rub a few years ago.  We really liked it and make it all the time.  This recipe makes A LOT of rub, and so that’s why the amount of chicken wings is also high.  I have used all of this rub for the 8 lbs of wings, but my husband prefers a little less rub so maybe don’t coat them down the first time, it may be too much spice for you.

We made our own BBQ to go with this, there is a link to it below.  It’s one of Bobby Flay’s and you don’t mess with anything BBQ that Bobby Flay doesn.  Of course, you can just buy your favorite brand from the store, which saves a lot of time and frankly, it’s what we usually do.

Enjoy your game day or pub night or just week-night dinner!


  • 1/4 cup paprika, smoked or regular
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup raw turbinado sugar (or brown sugar)
  • 2 TAB dark chili powder
  • 1 TAB garlic powder
  • 1 TAB onion powder
  • 1 1/2 TAB black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 8 lbs chicken wings


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all spices together in a bowl and whisk.  Season wings with rub.  Lay foil on a sheet pan and lightly oil it.  Place wings on pan, do not crowd.  You will need two pans for this amount of wings.  Place in oven and cook approximately 35 minutes.  Warm sauce (use store bought or this Carolina Style BBQ sauce) on stove.  Toss wings with sauce if desired and serve immediately.  Or, toss wings, return to oven for 5 minutes under the broiler and remove.  Serve immediately.

Adapted from: Food Republic



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