Why Grilled Chicken Wings Are A Christmas Day Tradition In My Family

It's not Christmas lunch without them.

Grilled Chicken Wings

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Several years ago, my family opted to start having a more casual menu for Christmas lunch. Since we usually have a more traditional meal for Christmas Eve, and there was also a lot of repetition from the Thanksgiving menu, we decided something different would be fun. The menu we now enjoy during our Christmas lunch is made up of appetizers and small bites, which is a nice change from the formal meal. 

Each year the menu usually includes at least one soup, some type of miniature sandwich, and, of course, a variety of desserts. There are, however, two menu items that must make an appearance: deviled eggs and my dad’s grilled chicken wings. When we first started brainstorming the menu for our more casual Christmas celebration, my dad decided it was the perfect opportunity to grill up a big batch of wings to share with the whole family. It’s now become tradition that we have them every year on Christmas Day. 

No matter if it’s a sunny 75-degree December day or if it’s misting rain with temperatures in the 40s, my dad can always be found standing by the grill on Christmas morning cooking up about 60 chicken wings. On Christmas Eve after the celebrations wind down for the day, he pulls all of the wings out to cut them up, season them, and add marinade so they can soak overnight. The next morning, just after the Christmas pancakes are served, he heads to the grill. After he pulls the wings off of the grill, he divides them into three flavors: plain, barbecue, and teriyaki. Plus, there’s always plenty of extra sauce options like ranch, buffalo sauce, and extra barbecue sauce. He then wraps them up in foil so they'll stay warm until lunch is served.

Although it's not known as traditional dish to serve on Christmas Day, grilled chicken wings have definitely solidified their spot on my family's holiday menu.

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