Buffalo Chicken Bites

In honor of the super bowl this weekend (an event that around here is much more about the delicious finger food than the actual game) I thought I should post my very favorite hot appetizer recipe. Even though these involve making your own dough they are really not too fussy and the are INCREDIBly tasty. Warm, buttery, little pillows of sweet bread wrapped around a cheesy melty buffalo chicken. I am getting hungry just thinking about them. Trust me, you won’t regret making these.

Buffalo Chicken Bites

Note: I usually set aside some of the chicken and make a few that are more kid friendly using ranch dressing instead of hot sauce for the kids.

recipe adapted from Gourmet

1 cup finely diced cooked chicken breast or thighs (I use frozen and throw mine in the crock pot with some salt a pepper, only takes a couple of hours)
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
2 tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup hot sauce (Frank’s brand is what I use)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

2 1/4 teaspoons rapid rise dry yeast

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1/2 tsp salt
1 cup warm milk ( I used 2%)

2 1/2 cups of flour

To make the buffalo chicken mixture, in a small bowl, combine the chicken, blue cheese, cheddar cheese, melted butter and hot sauce; salt and pepper to taste, set aside.

In a 1 cup measuring cup, heat the milk and then add the 2 tablespoons brown sugar; stir into warm milk until dissolved; place in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook.

Add 2 1/2 cups flour, yeast and salt to the stand mixer and mix on low speed until a soft dough forms, adding up to 1/2 cup additional flour, a little at a time, if necessary. Allow the dough to knead in the stand mixer for 5-7 minutes. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead a few times to form a smooth ball. Place dough into a clean bowl that’s been lightly oiled. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a draft-free place at warm room temperature until doubled and bubbles appear on surface, about 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 400°F with rack in the middle of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.

Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and cut into 4 equal pieces. Lightly dust your hands with flour, then gently roll and stretch 1 piece of dough to form a 12-inch-long rope. Flatten dough and arrange so a long side is nearest you, then roll out to a roughly 12- by 4-inch rectangle with a lightly floured rolling pin. Gently press one fourth of buffalo chicken mixture into lower third of rectangle, leaving a 1/2-inch border along bottom edge. Stretch bottom edge of dough up over filling and press tightly to seal, then roll up as tightly as possible to form a rope. Cut rope into 12 pieces and transfer to a sheet pan. Make 3 more ropes with remaining dough, filling and cut into pieces, transferring to sheet pans. Let rest at room temperature, uncovered, 30 minutes (dough will rise slightly).Bake buffalo chicken bites in the preheated oven for 5-7 minutes or until the tops are lightly browned. Remove from oven (some cheese may have melted out.) and brush tops with melted butter before serving.

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