Wingstop is a popular chicken wing restaurant chain that serves classic and boneless chicken wings in a variety of flavors. For those watching their calorie intake or macro nutrients, knowing the calorie count per wing at Wingstop can be helpful when ordering.
The Basics on Wingstop Chicken Wings
At Wingstop, an order of bone-in chicken wings typically includes 10 wings. Wingstop offers wings in the following portion sizes:
- Snack (5 wings)
- Small (10 wings)
- Medium (15 wings)
- Large (20 wings)
Wingstop has over a dozen wing flavors to choose from including original hot, lemon pepper, atomic, and mango habanero. The wings can also be ordered “naked” with no sauce or seasoning. Wingstop’s boneless wings come in portion sizes of 5, 10, 15, and 20 wings as well and can be paired with the same range of flavors.
Nutrition Information on Wingstop Wings
The number of calories in Wingstop wings depends on the portion size and whether you opt for bone-in or boneless wings. Here’s an overview of the calorie count:
- Snack (5 wings) = Around 250 calories for bone-in, 220 calories for boneless
- Small (10 wings) = Around 500 calories for bone-in, 440 calories for boneless
- Medium (15 wings) = Around 750 calories for bone-in, 660 calories for boneless
- Large (20 wings) = Around 1,000 calories for bone-in, 880 calories for boneless
The Wingstop website provides full nutrition information on their menu items. According to their data, here are more specific calorie counts per wing:
- 1 bone-in wing (original) = 50 calories
- 1 boneless wing (original) = 44 calories
Keep in mind that different sauces and dry rubs can slightly alter the calorie counts. For example, Louisiana rub bone-in wings are 51 calories per wing. Overall though, the difference is minor compared to the base calorie count.
Factors Affecting Calorie Counts
There are a few factors that can cause the actual calorie counts of Wingstop wings to vary:
- Cooking oil: Frying in oil adds extra calories. The type of oil, freshness of the oil, and exact frying time can influence the calorie absorption.
- Sauces: Some wing sauces may be slightly higher or lower in calories based on ingredients. Creamy buffalo sauce likely has a bit more than traditional buffalo.
- Dry rubs: Seasoned dry rubs add negligible calories compared to sauces.
- Wing sizes: Larger wings may have more calories than smaller wings on some orders.
- Breading: Breaded boneless wings can raise calorie counts slightly over non-breaded.
However, Wingstop states that their wings are zero trans-fat. So at least you don’t have to worry about that when indulging. The quick answer is an original Wingstop bone-in wing has about 50 calories.
Wingstop Nutrition Tips
If you’re looking to lower the calorie count at Wingstop, here are some tips:
- Order snack or small wing sizes
- Choose boneless over bone-in
- Opt for dry rubs over heavy sauces
- Avoid breaded boneless wings
- Eat slowly and mindfully
- Split your wings into multiple servings
- Pair with lower calorie sides like carrots
While Wingstop wings are high in calories, fat, and sodium, they can still be worked into a balanced diet in moderation. Just be mindful of your portion size.
How Wingstop Wings Compare to Other Restaurants
Wingstop classic bone-in and boneless wings have similar calorie counts to wings served at other major restaurant chains. Here’s how they compare per wing:
|Buffalo Wild Wings
As you can see, Wingstop is on the lower end for boneless wings, though a bit higher in calories for bone-in. The differences come down to factors like breading, sauces, frying, and wing sizes. But overall, most restaurant chains have similar wing nutrition profiles.
Wingstop vs. Buffalo Wild Wings
Since Buffalo Wild Wings is another popular wing chain, it’s useful to directly compare Wingstop and their calorie counts:
- Wingstop bone-in wings are around 50 calories each
- Buffalo Wild Wings are 60-100 calories each depending on sauce
- Wingstop boneless wings are 44 calories each
- Buffalo Wild Wings boneless are around 90 calories each
The two chains use different oil blends for frying, which accounts for some of the differences. And Buffalo Wild Wings tends to coat their boneless wings with more breading, driving those calorie counts up higher.
Wingstop Wings Nutrition Facts
Now let’s take a detailed look at the full nutrition facts for Wingstop bone-in and boneless wings. Here are the nutrients found in 1 original wing (bone-in or boneless) from Wingstop:
Wingstop Bone-In Wings (1 wing)
- Calories: 50
- Fat: 4g
- Carbs: 0g
- Protein: 6g
- Sodium: 180mg
Wingstop Boneless Wings (1 wing)
- Calories: 44
- Fat: 2g
- Carbs: 4g
- Protein: 5g
- Sodium: 320mg
Based on the nutrition information, Wingstop’s bone-in wings provide more protein, while the boneless have slightly more carbs. The boneless also contain more sodium due to the seasoning and breading. Both have about the same saturated fat content.
Wingstop Wing Ingredients
Want to know what goes into Wingstop’s wings? Here are the basic ingredients:
- Chicken wings
- Seasoning (salt, spices)
- Oil for frying (soybean, canola)
- Sauce or dry rub
- Chicken breast chunks
- Breading (wheat flour, spices)
- Seasoning (salt, spices)
- Oil for frying (soybean, canola)
- Sauce or dry rub
When choosing sauces, the ingredients can vary but often include tomatoes, vinegar, butter, garlic, ginger root, peppers, molasses, and herbs. The dry rubs also contain spices, seeds, herbs, and sometimes salt.
Finding Your Calorie Need
To put the 50 calories per Wingstop wing into context, here’s a look at general daily calorie needs:
Someone who needs 2,000 calories per day would make up 4% of their intake with just a single Wingstop wing. So when hunger strikes, you’ll want to keep portion sizes reasonable. Going for the snack or small wing orders can help avoid excess calorie intake.
Should You Eat the Skin?
Chicken wings have a tasty skin that gets crisp when fried. But since it’s high in fat, should you eat the skin to avoid extra calories? Here are some points on each option:
Eat the Skin
- Skin has more flavor from seasoning and sauce
- Provides texture contrast
- Not wasting any chicken
- Less time and work to eat the wings
Remove the Skin
- Reduces fat, calories, and sodium
- Potentially more healthier
- Allows you to eat more wings
- Can be messy and time-consuming
There’s no right or wrong answer here. If your priority is lower calories, removing the skin is an option. But for enjoying the true Wingstop wing experience, the skin does provide that signature crunch.
Cooking Wings at Home
Rather than dining out, another way to control nutrition and save money is by cooking wings yourself. Here are some tips for making wings at home:
- Buy raw, unseasoned wings to control ingredients
- Use baking, grilling, or air frying for lower fat than frying
- Season with dry spices, herbs, pepper, lemon, etc.
- Toss cooked wings in homemade wing sauce
- Make healthy baked breaded wings by coating raw wings in cornflake crumbs and baking
Homemade oven-baked wings can have around 50 calories as well, but will have less fat and sodium than restaurant wings. Just be careful with homemade sauces and seasonings to keep salt and sugar quantities in check. Home cooking lets you customize your wings to your own dietary needs.
Should You Eat the Bones?
Chicken wing bones are not meant to be eaten. The bones are hard and provide no nutritional value. Attempting to eat chicken wing bones can pose a choking hazard or damage to the digestive tract. All chicken bones, including wing bones, are best avoided and should be disposed of after removing the meat.
Tips for Portion Control When Eating Wings
Here are some tips to keep your wing consumption in check:
- Order the snack or small wing size
- Split orders with friends
- Have the wings as an appetizer, not a main meal
- Remove skins to reduce fat and calories
- Choose lower calorie dipping sauces
- Eat slowly and mindfully, savoring each wing
- Drink water with your meal
- If still hungry after wings, fill up on veggies or side salad
While an occasional wing feast can be satisfying, regular overconsumption can quickly lead to weight gain and negative health effects. Using smart portion control at Wingstop leaves room for other tasty foods in your diet as well.
Healthier Menu Options at Wingstop
Beyond wings, Wingstop does offer some lighter food choices including:
- Fresh cut fries
- Hand-Cut Boneless Wings
- Carrot Sticks
- Broccoli Florets
- Lemon Pepper Chicken Sandwich
- Buffalo Chicken Salad
- Water or Diet Drinks
Pairing wings with lower calorie sides and beverages can allow you to satisfy a wing craving while still eating somewhat balanced. Of course, moderation is always key, even when choosing lighter menu items.
In summary, an original Wingstop chicken wing (either bone-in or boneless) contains about 50 calories. The precise calorie count per wing can vary based on the size of the wing and preparation method. However, most Wingstop wing varieties provide around 50 calories per wing as a reasonable estimate. Factoring in portion size, accompaniments, and your personal calorie needs can help turn Wingstop into a sensible indulgence.