Why it's time to fire up the grill on Sunday.

Wonder Chicken Wings
Recipe: Wonder WingsOur easy, indirect-to-direct-heat grilling technique turns out tender wings with crisp skin. Pair them with any of our three sauces— Alabama White Sauce, Buttery Nashville Hot Sauce, or Vietnamese Peanut Sauce—for the greatest finger-lickin' appetizer of the summer.
| Credit: Alison Miksch

I'm not a big pro-football fan. In my book, the best football happens on Saturdays, and tailgating is something you do in a Grove, not a parking lot. I prefer the college marching bands, mascots, fight songs, and rivalries, not to mention watching Southern teams win the championship year after year. But I do get excited about the Super Bowl, mostly because it's an excuse to grill some chicken wings.

Of course, I'm not alone. According to the National Chicken Council's 2017 Wing Report (yes, there is such a thing), Americans will eat 1.33 billion chicken wings during Super Bowl 51— enough to circle the earth three times if you laid them end-to-end. That's up by about 30 million wings from last year, and it shouldn't be surprising that Southerners are eating more than their fair share. While the northeast region eats 12 percent more than other U.S. regions, the Southern region eats 13 percent more. Score one for Falcons country.

Wing-Onomics 2017
Credit: Modern Restaurant Management
Chicken Roost Wing-onomics 2017
Credit: Modern Restaurant Management

Yes, you can serve a great crowd-pleasing dip, but wings are always the star of the show, especially when you've made them yourself. This is a recipe the Southern Living test kitchen developed for summer, but I think it's perfect for a Super Bowl crowd on a Sunday night. I like to cook them on a Big Green Egg, but they also work great on a Weber or this little Lodge hibachi.

Try out our famous BBQ sauces:

    We developed three different sauces so there's something for everyone, and the grill gives it a crispy skin and a smoky flavor that's irresistible. Two pieces of advice:

    1. Get to the grocery store early, because the wings will disappear fast.
    2. Make more than you need. If the stats are true, then your guests are going to be hungry.