Buffalo Chicken


This baked Buffalo Chicken is made with tender chicken and a spicy homemade Buffalo sauce. Use it in a wrap, on pizza, in dip, for a quesadilla, you name it! 

sliced buffalo chicken over mashed potatoes on plate with celery and carrots

If you’ve ever met Trevor and I, then you know we LOVE spicy food. This buffalo chicken is no exception. What makes this recipe special? Our homemade buffalo sauce! It’s tangy, spicy, and has a hint of honey to balance out the heat.

Spicy lovers, this ones for you!

What is buffalo chicken?

Typically, when people are talking about buffalo chicken, they’re referring to deep-fried chicken wings slathered in a spicy Buffalo sauce (vinegar-based cayenne pepper hot sauce and melted butter).

Today, we’re making baked buffalo chicken breasts, because it’s more versatile (this chicken is GREAT served over mashed potatoes, on a sandwich, stuffed into a quesadilla, etc), easier to eat (no bones!) and bonus: it’s healthier!

If you’d like to make buffalo chicken wings, follow your favorite wing recipe, but use the sauce recipe listed below!

Why is it called buffalo chicken?

Supposedly Buffalo chicken was first served at a small bar called Anchor Bar located in Buffalo, New York…hence the name Buffalo chicken!

Ingredients

There are two parts to buffalo chicken: the sauce and the chicken.

Buffalo Sauce

  • Hot Sauce – Frank’s Original Hot Sauce is the way to go in this recipe. This is the spicy base for our sauce.
  • Unsalted Butter – adds warmth, richness, and cuts the heat!
  • Honey – adds just a touch of sweetness to balance out the spice.
  • White Wine Vinegar – adds a vinegar-y tang to contrast the sweetness from the honey
  • Worcestershire Sauce – adds a rich, umami flavor to the sauce.
  • Garlic Powder, Chili Powder, Salt, Cumin, Smoked Paprika, and Onion Powder – a sweet, spicy, and super flavorful seasoning blend that really makes this sauce shine!

Chicken

  • Warm Water and Salt – forms a brine that breaks down the chicken allowing it to absorb tons of moisture and become extra tender and flavorful.
  • Chicken Breasts – use 2 (8 oz) boneless and skinless chicken breasts. Prefer chicken thighs? Go for it! Cooking time may vary.
Pro tip
Before slathering the sauce all over the raw chicken, be sure you’re comfortable with the spice level. Give it a taste! If it’s too spicy, try adding more honey and/or butter. Not spicy enough? Add some cayenne pepper!

How to make

This delicious recipe takes 10 minutes to prep!

  1. Place all sauce ingredients in a saucepan and simmer until thickened. Remove from heat and set aside.buffalo sauce in saucepan
  2. Mix together warm water and salt then add in chicken breasts. Let sit for 15 minutes. chicken in salt water
  3. Rinse the chicken with cold water, pat dry, then toss with 1/2 cup buffalo sauce.chicken being tossed with buffalo sauce
  4. Place onto baking sheet with a silicone mat and bake for 15-30 minutes.baked chicken on cutting board
  5. Slice, cube, or shred then toss or drizzle with remaining sauce. Serve and enjoy!sliced chicken being drizzled with buffalo sauce
Pro tip
Don’t skip the brine! This makes the chicken SO tender and only requires an extra 15 minutes.

How do you make buffalo sauce?

Whipping up a homemade buffalo sauce could not be any easier:

  1. Place hot sauce, butter, honey, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, chili powder, salt, cumin, paprika, and onion powder into a medium sized saucepan.
  2. Bring to a simmer over medium heat.
  3. Remove from heat.
  4. Cool and set aside for use.

Is buffalo sauce spicy?

Typically, yes, buffalo sauce is spicy!

If you have a lower spice tolerance, I recommend starting with less hot sauce (or maybe replacing half of it with BBQ sauce instead) then adding more to taste. If it’s still too spicy, try adding more honey and/or butter. If you have a super high spice tolerance, add in some cayenne pepper!

What chicken to use

Use two 8 ounce boneless and skinless chicken breasts for buffalo chicken. If you prefer boneless, skinless chicken thighs, those will work as well (cooking time may vary).

plate of buffalo chicken with potatoes and veggies above

What to make with buffalo chicken

This chicken is delicious served on its own, but it’s also SO YUMMY incorporated into other recipes! Here are some ideas.

  • Pizza. Shred it up and throw it on a pizza crust with mozzarella cheese, blue cheese, and a drizzle of ranch! Use the extra buffalo sauce to replace the pizza sauce.
  • Quesadillas or tacos. Serve it shredded in a tortilla or taco shell with all your favorite add-ins (cheese, beans, etc.)
  • Wraps or Sandwiches. Slice it up and serve it on your favorite bread or in a wrap along with sliced tomatoes, lettuce, cucumbers, you name it!
  • Mac and Cheese. Cube it up and serve it over your favorite mac and cheese.

What to serve with buffalo chicken

I love to serve mine, sliced, over a generous helping of mashed potatoes with a side of blue cheese or ranch, sliced carrots and celery! If you’re looking to bulk up the meal even more, here are some ideas!

How to store

Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days or in the freezer for 3-4 months.

To reheat, thaw in the fridge if frozen then microwave or bake to re-warm!

– Jennifer

sliced buffalo chicken over mashed potatoes

Print

Buffalo Chicken

This baked Buffalo Chicken is made with tender chicken and a spicy homemade Buffalo sauce. Use it in a wrap, on pizza, in dip, for a quesadilla, you name it! 
Course Dinner, Main Dish – Chicken
Cuisine American
Keyword baked, easy, spicy
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 275kcal
Author Jennifer Debth

Ingredients

Buffalo Sauce

  • 1/2 cup Frank’s Original Hot Sauce
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder

Buffalo Chicken

  • 4 cups warm water
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 2 (8 oz) boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Instructions

Buffalo Sauce

  • Place hot sauce, butter, honey, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, chili powder, salt, cumin, paprika, and onion powder into a medium sized saucepan.
  • Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
  • Simmer for 1 minute, then remove from heat, cool and set aside for use.

Buffalo Chicken

  • Preheat oven to 450 degrees F and line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat. Set aside.
  • Fill a large bowl with 4 cups of warm water.
  • Pour in 1/4 cup salt and stir until most of the salt has absorbed.
  • Stir in the chicken breasts.
  • Let sit for 15 minutes at room temperature to brine.
  • Remove the chicken breasts from brine, then rinse them with cold water.
  • Pat dry, toss with 1/2 cup buffalo sauce, then place onto prepared baking sheet.
  • Bake for 15-30 minutes or until the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
  • Let rest for 5 minutes.
  • Slice, cube, or shred then toss or drizzle with remaining sauce.
  • Serve as is or make into a sandwich, wrap, pizza, etc and enjoy!

Video

Notes

Buffalo Sauce makes 1 cup.

Nutrition

Serving: 1person | Calories: 275kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 103mg | Sodium: 8617mg | Potassium: 493mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 709IU | Vitamin C: 24mg | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 1mg

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