What if I told you that you could make the crispiest chicken wings you have ever tasted in 30 minutes?! Well, you can! My recipe for air fryer chicken wings with a hot honey glaze is the perfect appetizer to serve on game day. Or, if you are like me, on a Tuesday! These wings are sweet, spicy, and smoky. The best part of all - they are healthier than fried chicken wings. If you are anxious about how to make chicken wings, fear not. This recipe is easy to follow and perfect.
As you know, my family and I LOVE football. This recipe is a perfect game day appetizer. Here are some other game day recipes that I love to serve:
- 4-Ingredient Guacamole
- Crispy Air Fried Ravioli
- Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Dip
- Jalapeno Stuffed, Bacon Wrapped Shrimp
- Classic Deviled Eggs
- Healthy Angeled Eggs
- Raspberry Brie Tartlets
(Please note, this post contains affiliate links which means I will receive a small commission on the sale of these items at no cost to you.)
So, let's talk chicken wings...
How Do You Prepare Chicken Wings?
You can find chicken wings at any grocery store. Chicken wings typically come in one of three ways:
- Trimmed and Fresh - These are the easiest to work with, but tend to be more expensive.
- Whole and Fresh - These are less expensive, but before air frying, you must break them down into three pieces. More on that later!
- Frozen - You can find frozen wings in most grocery stores. You can air fry chicken wings from frozen, but if you have time to thaw them, they will come out crispier. Also, this recipe works best with chicken wings that are not already breaded or seasoned.
My preference is to air fry fresh chicken wings. If you do choose to air fry wings from frozen, it is best to note the tips below:
- Add at least 5 minutes to the cook time on the recipe below. Depending on how many wings you are air frying, they will likely require more time.
- Air fry frozen wings in one layer to promote crisping and a more even cook.
- Pause frying and shake the wings every few minutes to promote crisping.
- Thaw first, if you have time. If your wings are thawed before cooking, additional time will not likely be necessary.
- ALWAYS test the internal temperature before consuming poultry - it should always be 165°F/73.9°C.
Can I Layer Chicken Wings In An Air Fryer?
You can layer chicken wings in the air fryer, but there are a few things to note:
- You will probably have to pause the frying and shake the wings a few times while cooking, to promote crisping and even cooking.
- The more wings that are being cooked, the longer it will take to air fry.
- My recipe requires that you flip the wings halfway through the frying process, so if you use a metal second tier to stack wings, you might have some trouble flipping the wings.
My recommendation: Air fry the wings in batches of 10-12 in one layer. This way, your wings will always be crispy and evenly cooked.
How Do I Break Down Chicken Wings?
Whole chicken wings have three parts: a drumette, a flat or wingette, and a tip.
When we consume chicken wings, we are almost always just consuming the drumette and the flat/wingette. The tips do not contain much meat at all and are usually discarded or used in making chicken stock.
Chicken wings are super easy to break down. It is best to show you how to break one down, so if you are using whole chicken wings for this recipe, here is a step-by-step video of the breakdown process.
Hot Honey: A Sweet And Spicy New Trendgredient
As you already read in my Hot Honey Mojito Mocktail recipe blog, hot honey is the sweet and spicy flavor combination you need in your life. It is incredibly versatile and can be used in so many creative ways.
My mojito mocktail recipe calls for a homemade jalapeño simple syrup. My hot honey chicken wing recipe has a smoky, spicy, hot honey glaze made from chipotle and adobo. Both feature a variation on hot honey, but they have very different flavor profiles.
There are a few hot honey products that you can purchase that are largely popular and versatile in the kitchen.
Ode To An Air Fryer
Y'all... if you do not have an air fryer, you need to get one. I'm serious. I love my air fryer. There are so many things it can do! It is much healthier than deep frying and food comes out so much crispier than when you bake in the oven! Just saying!
If you are unsure which air fryer to purchase, allow me to help! Below, you will find the highest rated air fryers on the market. The air fryer that I have is the Ninja Air Fryer below.
Final Tips For Making Crispy Chicken Wings In An Air Fryer
To achieve crispy chicken wings, please follow the tips below:
- Always dry the chicken skin with a paper towel before adding salt and air frying.
- Do not crowd the air fryer! Too many wings in an air fryer at the same time will lengthen the cooking time and result in wings that are not as crispy.
- Don't use extra oil on your chicken wings. The fat in the chicken skin will render (or melt away), which is the key component to a crispy exterior. Added oil will not make the wings crispier.
There you have it! If you make this recipe at home, drop me a line in the comments. I would love to hear from you!
Air Fryer Chicken Wings With A Hot Honey Glaze
- 2 lbs. chicken wings trimmed (or you can trim them yourself, instructions are in the blog post!)
- ¾ cup honey
- 1 7 oz. can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce We will use 1 whole chipotle and 3-4 tsp. adobo in this recipe.
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. black pepper
- 4 tbsp. unsalted butter I like to cut my butter into 4 individual pats, to encourage melting.
- salt to taste (to season wings)
- ranch dressing, queso fresco, chopped flat leaf parsley (optional - these are the ingredients I use to garnish my wings)
- In a saucepan over medium low heat, combine honey, 1 whole chipotle pepper (with seeds), 3-4 tsp. adobo sauce, smoked paprika, salt, and pepper. While the mixture is heating slowly, work on the chicken wings.
- Pat chicken wings dry with a paper towel and season both sides with salt, to taste. Place wings in air fryer in one layer. No need to add additional oil - the wings will provide enough fat for the air frying process.
- Air fry chicken wings for 10 minutes on 360°F. Using tongs, flip the chicken wings over and air fry for another 10 minutes at 360°F. For extra crispy wings, cook for 5 additional minutes at 390°F. Wings are done with they reach an internal temperature of 165°F.
- While your chicken wings are cooking, add butter to the mixture on the stove and stir. Once the butter is melted, strain sauce into a large bowl, using a fine mesh strainer. This process will remove the seeds and the whole chipotle pepper.
- When the wings are fully cooked, toss them in the sauce, making sure to coat the wings completely. Garnish and serve immediately. I like to garnish with a drizzle of ranch dressing, crumbled queso fresco, and a sprinkle of flat leaf parsley.
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