Kardea Brown’s Maple BBQ Chicken and Waffles Put a Sweet Spin on Comfort Food

Inspired by passed-down family recipes and an innate flair for flavour, Kardea Brown does comfort food right with every must-try recipe she shares on Delicious Miss Brown. Her latest spin on a soul-food classic — chicken and waffles — takes your brunch to the next level with the perfect balance of warmth, spice and sweetness.

For the chicken component of the dish, Kardea makes crispy fried chicken wings the same way her grandmother and mother showed her — well-seasoned and shaken up old-school in a brown paper bag. Once golden, the wings are dipped in Kardea’s sweet-and-tangy barbecue sauce. Plain waffles wouldn’t do the finger-licking wings justice, so Kardea created a crave-worthy spin with smashed sweet potatoes and spiced up with cinnamon for a callback to sweet potato pie. Finally, maple syrup is the delicious thread that ties the dish together — it’s the sweetheart of the barbecue sauce and it’s drizzled over the waffles.

Related: These Waffle Recipes Will Make You Jump Right Out of Bed

Maple BBQ Chicken and Sweet Potato Waffles

Total Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes
Active Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Yields: 4 servings (4 sweet potato waffles, 3 cups of Maple BBQ sauce and 5 tsp of seasoning)

Ingredients:

8 whole chicken wings, about 2 lbs. total
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp Miss Brown’s House Seasoning, recipe follows
Canola oil, for frying
About 1 cup Miss Brown’s Maple BBQ Sauce, recipe follows
4 Sweet Potato Waffles, recipe follows
Pickled jalapeno slices, optional
Maple syrup, for serving

Sweet Potato Waffles
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups buttermilk, at room temperature
3/4 cup mashed sweet potato
1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 Tbsp dark brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature

Miss Brown’s Maple BBQ Sauce
One 14.5-oz can tomato sauce
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/3 cup ketchup
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Miss Brown’s House Seasoning
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Related: Kardea Brown’s Big Apple Crumb Cheesecake is the Dessert You Deserve Right Now

Directions:

1. Pour enough oil into a large Dutch oven to come about one-third of the way up the sides (it should be deep enough to cover the wings) and heat to 350ºF. Preheat the oven to 200ºF. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with a wire rack.

2. Rinse the chicken wings (the water is going to help the flour stick) and place on one of the prepared baking sheets. Season both sides with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Place the flour and House Seasoning in a large paper bag and shake to combine. Add the chicken wings, 2 at a time, shaking well to coat. Return the coated wings to the same baking sheet.

3. Fry the wings in batches until golden brown and the internal temperature reaches 165ºF, 4 to 6 minutes per side. Transfer to the other prepared baking sheet.

4. To serve, toss the wings with the Maple BBQ Sauce. Place two wings on each Sweet Potato Waffle. Top with jalapeno slices, if desired, drizzle with maple syrup and serve warm.

Sweet Potato Waffles:

1. Preheat a Belgian waffle iron.

2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, sweet potato, melted butter, sugar and eggs. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until well combined.

4.. Add a heaping cup of waffle batter to the preheated waffle iron and cook until the outsides of the waffle are lightly browned and cooked through, about 4 minutes, depending on your waffle iron. Remove the waffle and repeat with the remaining batter.

Miss Brown’s Maple BBQ Sauce:

1. Stir together the tomato sauce, maple syrup, brown sugar, ketchup, soy sauce, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder and onion powder in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20 to 30 minutes. If the sauce becomes too thick, add up to 1/4 cup water. Season with salt and pepper. Use on poultry, pork, beef or seafood. The sauce will keep, tightly covered in the refrigerator, for up to 2 weeks.

Miss Brown’s House Seasoning:

1. Stir together the garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, salt and pepper in a small bowl.

Cook’s Note: Miss Brown’s House Seasoning can be made in a large batch and stored in an airtight container at room temperature for about 3 months.

Special Equipment: Belgian waffle iron

Want another delicious chicken idea from Kardea? This creamy smothered chicken will have you licking your plate clean.

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