Healthy Quinoa Encrusted Wings!
I came across a version of this recipe while watching the morning news. I was intrigued. When the opportunity to improve the healthy-ness of traditionally unhealthy fare presents itself; I am all over it. This was no different. And, it is worth noting, this recipe is gluten-free as long as you make sure the wing sauce you choose is also gluten-free.
This is an easy recipe when you know a few things up front:
- Removing the skin and fat from drumettes and wings is a gigantic pain in the a#$. but, it is worth it. Once you start cutting away the skin and the fat and you realize exactly how much fat there is, you’ll be disgusted. I digress. Get yourself a pair of Joyce Chen kitchen scissors (useful for many things). For whatever skin and fat that you are unable to pull off, you can cut away with this little and exceptionally sharp scissors. You won’t get it all, but do the best you can.
- Another tip that may make life easier is using regular drumsticks. These are larger, have more meat, and less skin/fat (typically). I’ve found that the skin on these drumsticks is much easier to remove without the aide of scissors.
- Red quinoa. This is hard to find. I found it at Whole
paycheckFoods for $6.99/ bag. I was able to make this recipe twice with 1 bag. I keep looking for other places to buy it without much luck. One place I have yet to look is Sunflower Market. That might be a place to try. If you are a planner, you can order the quinoa from amazon - click that link and you’ll save some $$$ too!
12 each Chicken wings/drumsticks or combo, skinless
1/4 cup Buttermilk (you can use the low fat variety)
1/4 cup Low Fat mayonnaise
1 tsp. Montreal Chicken Seasoning
1 cup Quinoa, red variety, I used the alter eco brand – if you are using drumsticks instead of drumettes, increase the amount of quinoa you are using
1 tsp. Garlic Powder
1 tsp. Onion Powder
1/2 cup wing sauce (I used Frank’s Brand)
1. Preheat the oven to 425° F. Line a baking sheet or cookie sheet with non-stick foil. Spray with cooking spray – liberally – you don’t want to lose any quinoa.
2. For wings: cut off end section (tips) . Remove skin and separate each wing into two separate pieces by cutting through the joint in the center. For drumsticks/drumettes pull off the skin or use scissors. See tips above. In the end, do your best to remove the fat.
3. In a bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, mayonnaise and poultry seasonings until well combined.
4. Place quinoa in a food processor or blender and process until grains are somewhat powdery. Takes about a minute in processor – longer than you would think. Pour mixture into a bowl.
5. Add the chicken wings to the wet mixture and toss until wings are evenly coated. Then dredge and press each chicken wing pieces in the quinoa until coated on all sides. If you are using drumsticks instead of drumettes, increase the amount of quinoa you are using or you will run out.
6. Spread wings one layer thick out on baking sheet.
7. Place sheet on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Pull wings out of the oven and get your tongs. Using your tongs, turn the wings over and as you do so, I would recommend re-spraying your foil with cooking spray (so the quinoa sticks better in the end) and cook another 20 minutes or until meat is cooked through and the coating is crisped. For drumsticks add about an additional 10 minutes of cooking time.
8. Meanwhile, stir the garlic and onion powders and the hot sauce together in a bowl. Remove wings from the oven and using tongs, dip each wing in the sauce to coat evenly careful not to remove the quinoa crumbles. Place on a plate.
9. Serve warm or cold with blue cheese or ranch dressing dip and celery sticks. You will be a hero.