One of the hardest parts of being a new vegan (or even an old seasoned vegan) is trying to keep up with all the new products out there. I must have spent over $50 looking for the "right" vegan cheese my first year being a vegan and I have over 50 vegan/vegetarian cookbooks in my arsenal but not all the recipes are the greatest. I’m the first born so I’m used to being a Guinea Pig and now I’m your Vegan Guinea Pig. So here are my recommendations and critiques. Let me know what you think!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Chicken-Free Buffalo Wings

When I first went veg, 7 years ago, Gardenburger had a brand of meatless Buffalo wings that were good enough to make you cry! I remember buying them in bulk. I was never one for Buffalo wings as an omnivore but as a vegetarian I just had to have them. Then one day they just disappeared. I checked the companies website and it was like they never existed. I even wrote a letter to the company to inquire about them but my letters went unanswered.

Over the years I've learned how to make my own meatless Buffalo wings (I prefer to call them buffalo bites) and my recipe is included in my upcoming book Quick and Easy Vegan Comfort Food. Although it doesn't take more than 30 minutes to put my Spicy Buffalo Bites together, sometimes, after dragging in the door after 9pm after a long day of work, school, working out and trying to maintain a semblance of a social life I just don't have the energy for it.

I've been eying Health is Wealth's brand of Chicken-Free Buffalo Wings for about a year now. They didn't look like they had the deep red spicy sauce of Gardenburger's meat free Buffalo Wings but since Gardenburger had decided to abandon me years ago it was only right that I give another brand a try.

5 wings only took 2 minutes to cook in the microwave. Then I threw them in the toaster oven on broil for a couple minutes to get them nice and crispy on the outside. They smelled wonderful. I got out a little vegan blue cheese dressing, carrot sticks, celery sticks, and was ready to sit down to a perfect meal. Unfortunately, these buffalo wings didn't deliver. The texture was fine, and the taste would have been fine if all i wanted was regular meatless chicken nuggets. But I was expecting buffalo wings, at least a little heat, but there was no spice to be found. Thankfully I had some hot sauce sitting around and I whipped up a bit of the sauce that I use to make my Spicy Buffalo Bites and dipped each of the buffalo wings in it. Perfection! It gave them the kick that they needed. I finished the entire package of 12 nuggets in two days using this method.

Even though these chicken-free buffalo wings weren't exactly what I was looking for I would still buy them again if I had a coupon for them or they were on sale (which happens quite often). They definitely weren't bad, they just lacked that characteristic spicy buffalo sauce.


  1. I've had them and didn't really care for them. They reminded me of frozen fish-sticks.

  2. Oh, man! I used to love those Gardenburger hot wingz too! Sooooo good. I wonder if we could start a campaign to bring those back (and in vegan form!)

  3. I was a HUGE fan of the gardenburger buffalo wings too! I bought cases from my grocery store when I found out there were being dicontinued. I contacted gardenburger years ago and they said they were coming out with the simialr meat substitute and different dipping sauces, of course they were supposed to be out in spring of 06 LOL I just sent another email and will keep you posted. They were the best!!

  4. mmmm love them! and their regular nuggets, too.

  5. I live in Brooklyn and have a restaurant down the street from me called Red Bamboo. They make THE BEST BBQ buffalo wings and sugarcane drumsticks and I have noooooo idea how or what's in them. I could eT them every day! The BBQ ones are molded around a bamboo stick for the "bone" and the sugarcane ones are around, you guessed it, sugarcane!! Eeveryone I've ever brought there, vege-or meatetarian loves them! And I just wish I could figure out what the hell they do to make them so fantastigreat. Anyone eveyone been?? They have another location in manhattan. If you live in the area, definitely stop by... And then write in and tell us all what you think is goin on... It's some kind of textured vegetable/soy protein. It even feels as tho they had a skin on them. They're incredible. As is everything on the menu, but these are their shining stars :-) glad there are ppl out there that like veggie wings as much as me!!!

  6. On the radio show I listen to, there was an on-going debate on which was worse....Ballet, or Meatless wings, and after trying the meatless wings, I'll tell you they are far from the words they used to describe them. They are AMAZING!

  7. So funny...I just ran across your blog and was going back through some old posts and then I saw this one and realized that I have your book, and I love it! My favorite is the loaded baked potato soup--nothing better in the winter!


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