The Reason You Should Use Dry Rub For Chicken Wings

Everyone has preferences when it comes to how they season their meat. While some cooks are completely devoted to a lengthy marinating period in a sauce, others prefer a dry rub. The type of meat you're working with also matters — you may have a different go-to seasoning method depending on what exactly you're making. However, if you've always slathered your chicken wings in some type of marinade, under the impression that it would yield the best wings, you may want to consider at least giving dry rub a try. Here's why.

First of all, if you're determined to infuse as much flavor into your chicken wings as possible, dry rub is the way to go. As Epicurious states, dry rubs stick to the surface of meat a whole lot better than marinades. Additionally, prepping your wings with a ton of marinade and simply tossing them right on the grill might actually cause your chicken wings to steam rather than sear, leading to a less-than-appetizing, soggy final dish. And if you're adding in a ton of acidity in an attempt to tenderize your chicken wings or add more flavor, you could actually be doing them a disservice, as The Los Angeles Times indicates meat that's marinating in too much acidity for too long can actually develop a mealy texture.

If you don't quite believe in dry rub's flavor-boosting power, know that marinades having the ability to really penetrate the meat is actually a myth, as Amazing Ribs reports.

Dry rub chicken wings yield better results on the grill

Beyond the flavor, dry rubs allow you to bypass a few common marinade-based mistakes made when grilling meat. Per Bon Appetit, the sugar content in many marinades means they might actually burn on the grill if you toss them on when the heat is too high, which definitely isn't what you want for mouthwatering chicken wings.

Additionally, if your marinade contains a lot of oil, the wet mixture may end up dripping as it hits the grill, or when the heat starts working its magic. While you might not think this is much of a problem, as The Spruce Eats warns, the dripping fat could actually cause a grill flare-up. Not to mention, chicken wings themselves contain a lot of fat — it's the second fattiest part of this cut of meat, coming in second only to the skin, as Livestrong reports. So, you really don't need a lot of fat in your seasoning in order to keep the chicken wings juicy while you grill — all you really need is to pack in plenty of flavor.

If you're still not fully convinced that dry rub is the way to go for wings, know that you have a marinating back-up. As HuffPost explains, there's a method called reverse marinating, in which you briefly soak the already cooked meat in marinade. So, if you feel your dry rub-coated wings need a little something extra, you can still add in your favorite sauce or marinade.