Baked Chili and Lime Drumsticks

Okay, so the sauce on these bad boys is pretty good and super simple, but what really makes the wings great is how crispy and moist they are. And they're not fried! The inspiration for these wings came from our favorite restaurant in Puerto Rico, Jose Enrique. We ordered the wings there and were practically licking the dish, the sauce was so good. When our waiter returned to find us face-first in a plate of chicken wing sauce, we asked how they were made, and he let us in on the secret. Get the full recipe and more photos below.

The one thing I might change about this recipe next time, is possibly adding a sprinkle of corn starch to the sauce before coating the wings. The sauce had a tendency to separate slightly and wasn't thick enough to stick to the wings as much as I like, so you may want to try that technique and let me know how it turns out.

Baked Thai Chili Wings

For wings
12 - 14 chicken drumsticks
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 tablespoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For sauce
1/3 cup Sambal Oelek chili paste (looks like this, found in Asian section of most grocery stores)
1/2 cup butter, cubed
Juice of one lime
2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
1 handful of cilantro leaves for garnish

Preheat oven to 400°. Set a wire rack inside each of 2 large rimmed baking sheets. Place wings, vegetable oil, salt and pepper in a large bowl; toss to coat.  Divide wings between prepared racks and spread out in a single layer.

Bake wings until cooked through and skin is crispy, 45–50 minutes. To crisp skin even more turn broiler on high and cook 3 additional minutes on each side. 

While wings are cooking, prepare the sauce. In a small saucepan heat chili paste over medium low heat. Once heated through add butter and begin to whisk together until butter is melted and combined. Turn up heat to medium, add lime juice, and continue to whisk. Stir on for 3-5 minutes. Add cilantro and remove from heat.

Toss wings with sauce in a large mixing bowl and place on a serving dish. Drizzle remaining sauce over the top and sprinkle remaining cilantro leaves. Serve immediately. 

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