The Reason So Many Pizza Chains Sell Chicken Wings

iStock/rudisill
iStock/rudisill

It’s become exceedingly rare to find a pizzeria that doesn’t offer its customers a side order of sauce-slathered buffalo chicken wings. Most of the major national chains—Domino’s, Pizza Hut, and Papa John’s among them—traffic in poultry. So how did the pairing come about?

According to a recent Thrillist history by Kat Thompson, the marriage of pizza and wings can be traced to La Nova Pizza, a pizza parlor in Buffalo, New York. Fittingly, La Nova was located in the home city of the buffalo chicken wing, where the Anchor Bar and Restaurant first served the wings—formerly regarded as undesirable scraps—in the 1960s. La Nova began adding wings to its menu in the 1970s and then offered them as a side dish to delivery orders in the 1990s.

The bigger chains took notice of its success: Both Pizza Hut and Domino’s introduced wings nationally in early 1995. Their support created such demand for the product that the price of wholesale wings went from 47 cents a pound to 82 cents a pound. Pizza Hut was selling 2 million wings a day.

For operators, the addition made a lot of logistical sense. Wings could be baked in ovens that the shops already had; dipping sauces complemented pizza crusts nicely. Pizza is largely a carbohydrate and wings are a protein. It seemed to resonate with the palates of consumers. To open a new pizzeria usually required no special equipment besides a freezer and some deep fryers. Most importantly, they were a messy finger food, and pizza fans were already comfortable with hand-based eating.

But wings won't work on every menu. In 2013, McDonald’s tried offering chicken wings, which it dubbed Mighty Wings, for a limited time, but the idea fizzled. People didn’t care for a hamburger and wing combo. Of the 50 million pounds of wings McDonald’s hoped to sell, 10 million were left uneaten. It might have gone better with a McPizza.

[h/t Thrillist]

These Rugged Steel-Toe Boots Look and Feel Like Summer Sneakers

Indestructible Shoes
Indestructible Shoes

Thanks to new, high-tech materials, our favorite shoes are lighter and more comfortable than ever. Unfortunately, one thing most sneakers are not is durable. They can’t protect your feet from the rain, let alone heavy objects. Luckily, as their name implies, Indestructible Shoes has come up with a line of steel-toe boots that look and feel like regular sneakers.

Made to be incredibly strong but still lightweight, every pair of Indestructible Shoes has steel toes, skid-proof grips, and shock-absorption technology. But they don't look clunky or bulky, which makes them suitable whether you're going to work, the gym, or a family gathering.

The Hummer is Indestructible Shoes’s most well-rounded model. It features European steel toes to protect your feet, while the durable "flymesh" material wicks moisture to keep your feet feeling fresh. The insole features 3D arch support and extra padding in the heel cup. And the outsole features additional padding that distributes weight and helps your body withstand strain.

Indestructible Shoes Hummer.
The Hummer from Indestructible Shoes.
Indestructible Shoes

There’s also the Xciter, Indestructible Shoes’s latest design. The company prioritized comfort for this model, with the same steel toes as the Hummer, but with additional extra-large, no-slip outsoles capable of gripping even smooth, slippery surfaces—like, say, a boat deck. The upper is made of breathable moisture-wicking flymesh to help keep your feet dry in the rain or if you're wearing them on the water.

If you want a more breathable shoe for the peak summer months, there's the Ryder. This shoe is designed to be a stylish solution to the problem of sweaty feet, thanks to a breathable mesh that maximizes airflow and minimizes sweat and odor. Meanwhile, extra padding in the midsole will keep your feet protected.

You can get 44 percent off all styles if you order today.

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Wax Paper vs. Parchment Paper: What’s the Difference for Cooking?

Wax paper is great for keeping your counter space clean (as seen above).
Wax paper is great for keeping your counter space clean (as seen above).

When it comes to kitchen accessories, there are utensils like ladles and spatulas, bakeware like cupcake pans, and then covers and wraps like aluminum foil and plastic bags. But one kitchen item can result in some confusion—paper. Specifically, wax paper versus parchment paper. Despite similar appearances, they're not the same. What’s the difference between the two?

It’s pretty simple. Parchment paper tolerates heat and wax paper does not. Parchment paper is a sturdy, kitchen-specific item made with silicone that resists both grease and moisture. It’s perfect for cake molds or for wrapping fish. (So long as you don’t reuse it for those tasks.) You can safely use parchment paper in an oven.

Wax paper also has a non-stick surface, but it’s not intended for use around any kind of heat source. The wax on the paper could melt. It’s better to use it to cover countertops to make clean-up easier. You can also use it to roll out dough or pound chicken breasts into submission.

Though parchment paper is typically more expensive, it’s far more versatile. You should opt for wax paper only if you plan on making a mess and want to discard it easily. But don’t get the two mixed up, as wax paper near heat could require another kitchen accessory: a fire extinguisher.

[h/t MarthaStewart.com]