This chicken wing dipping sauce is super simple but the perfect cooling dip with spicy buffalo wings. It has a sour cream base, just four more simple ingredients and mixes up in 5 minutes.
Be sure to check out my recipe for crispy, oven-baked, gluten-free chicken wings and crispy toaster oven chicken wings. There’s no added oil, no flour and no baking soda in either one. Just a cooking method that makes the skin paper thin and crispy.
Buffalo Wing Dip
Traditionally buffalo wings are served with blue cheese dressing or ranch dressing for dipping. Why are these dressings so popular with wings? The cooling effect of the dairy in those dressings makes them the perfect pairing with a hot, spicy buffalo sauce.
Personally, I am not a huge fan of the mayo in ranch dressing nor do I like blue cheese. And both of these dressings usually contain preservatives, which will send my husband straight to bed with a migraine.
So a simple homemade sauce is my favorite option. I use tangy sour cream as the base and give it hints of ranch dressing flavor. Even better, this sauce can be made lactose-free if needed!
Sour cream is such a good base for this sauce because it’s a little tangy and super thick and creamy. Even a low-fat sour cream will work.
Use a dairy-free sour cream if you are lactose-free. Follow Your Heart and Kite Hill both make excellent dairy-free/vegan sour creams.
Just a little bit of vinegar adds some extra tang to this sauce. It also thins it out enough to be the right consistency for dipping. I use apple cider vinegar, but white wine vinegar, rice vinegar or plain white vinegar will work too. I do not recommend using balsamic vinegar unless it is white balsamic.
Fresh chopped chives add a slight bitterness which may not sound appetizing but with some sweetness, a little salt and tang it makes the perfect flavor combination.
A small amount of sweetener balances the tang of the sour cream and bitterness of the chives. I use agave since it incorporates easily into the sauce. Maple syrup is another good option.
And finally just a little bit of salt brings it all together and balances all the other flavors.
The flavors in this recipe are balanced just to my taste. But I have never been the type of chef that is rigid about a recipe. If you prefer the dipping sauce a little sweeter, a little saltier or a little more tangy feel free to make it to your preference.
- Want it a little saltier? Add salt a couple of pinches at a time and taste. Be sure to just add a little bit at a time, you can always add more but taking it out . . . well that doesn’t work!
- Prefer it a little sweeter? Add agave or maple syrup starting with 1/4 teaspoon. Taste again and add more if necessary.
- Want a little more tang? Add more vinegar 1/4 teaspoon at a time tasting as you go.
5 Minute, Homemade Chicken Wing Dipping Sauce
- ½ c sour cream (low-fat or dairy-free options ok)
- 4 tsp vinegar – apple cider, white, white wine, white balsamic or rice vinegars will work
- 1 tsp agave, maple syrup or other liquid sweetener agave syrup substitute
- ¼ tsp granulated onion (or ⅛ tsp onion powder)1
- ¼ tsp granulated garlic (or ⅛ tsp powder)1
- ⅛ tsp salt
- 2 pinches finely ground black pepper
- 1 heaping Tbsp finely chopped chive
- Place the sour cream, vinegar, agave, onion and garlic granules, salt and pepper into a small mixing bowl.
- Stir well with a wire whisk or fork until the sauce is smooth.
- Stir in the chopped chive.
- Taste. This is the flavor balance that I prefer, but if you want it a little more salty add a couple of pinches of salt. More sweet? Add a ¼ tsp or more of sweetener. More sour? Add another ¼ teaspoon or more of vinegar.
- Be sure to check out my recipe for crispy, oven-baked, gluten-free chicken wings.
- Some spice makers make a distinction between onion and garlic powders vs granules or granulated. Others use the terms interchangeably. If yours are more powdery like cinnamon, use 1/8 teaspoon. If they are more granulated like fine salt, use 1/4 tsp.
Made this tonight. Was very good! Started with the recipe as written (except did not have chives) and then increased sweetness a little at a time till I got the flavor balance MY family would like. Very simple recipe to keep on hand! Thanks, Janet!
Janet Harlow says
I’m so glad you enjoyed it. And great to see that you took the time to play with the flavor and make it to your preference! Love it!
Tanisha Foster says
Great alternative to a traditional ranch dip for chicken wings.
I was looking for a dip on Thanksgiving for some chicken wings I made and came across this recipe. I had most of the ingredients, besides The cloves but sub w/green onions. Simple and delicious
Will make again! Thanks
Janet Harlow says
Thanks so much for letting me know Tanisha. So glad you enjoyed it.
Brieona Cochran says
Ran out of ranch and found this recipe! Followed exact minus the chives and it was amazing! Thank you for this life saver!
Janet Harlow says
Yay! So happy to hear this.