How to Cook Chicken Wings, the Marinade and the 6 Versatile Recipes

How to cook chicken wings? Easy! You can either boil, bake, fry, or smoke. Whichever technique you choose, do it with diligence and any dish you create will be quite exquisite.

Cooking tricks are not created equal. Each may require different ingredients and separate equipment set. Some are quicker than others, while longer cooking time often gives better flavor. You may need to add extra sinful fat or remove it along the way.

Chicken wings are healthy, but also infamous for being loaded with fatty skins. Get some organically grown options, or partner with healthier side dishes such as vegetables and fruits salad.

Consider its freshness and shelf life. Every time you buy, get the best quality possible. Get it fresh or frozen and try to avoid chicken with foul odor and discoloration.

Go cook the chicken wings, but let’s take a look at marinade first, which is vital for most meat recipes.

The Chicken Wings Marinade

To make the chicken wings marinade, you need to gather four key ingredients, fat, sugar, acid, and seasoning.

Fat helps retain moisture while cooking, and keeps the seasoning intact into the marinade. Use fat such as olive oil, coconut milk, canola oil, sesame oil, and coconut oil.

Use acid such as lime juice, rice vinegar, orange juice, lemon juice, and white vinegar. Acid also balance out the fat and makes the dish brighter.

For the sweet kick, use either brown sugar, honey, maple syrup, agave, or white sugar. Sugar is responsible for maillard browning reaction and further flavor development.

The last and perhaps the most versatile, the spices. The commons are salt, pepper, chili powder, and garlic. Be creative, add more and mix and match as you see fit.

Choose the four key ingredients, fat, sugar, acid, and seasoning. Mix in a bowl and soak the chicken wings. Cover and put in the fridge for 30 minutes and up to 4 hours. Don’t let it in the fridge for too long because it will start to spoil.

This chicken wings marinade suits not only chicken wings but other meat types too.

1. The Fried Chicken Wings Recipe

This is the basic and perhaps your favorite. Not because of flavor superiority but for its simplicity. Simply get the chicken wings and fry in a bubbling oil until golden brown.

If you have the marinade ready, you can step up the fried chicken wings recipe. soak the wings for at least 30 minutes before frying.

How to reheat fried chicken you say? Read it here.

2. The Baked Chicken Wings

The marinade you’ve just made is indeed useful. You’ve just used it for the fried chicken wings recipe and now for baked chicken wings.

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Soak the chicken wings in marinade for at least 30 minutes. Up to 4 hours if you have time to spare. Then bake for 30-40 minutes or to wings internal temperature of 165ºF.

You can use dry marinade instead. Rub the chicken wings with mustard sauce, cover with powdered spices, and then bake.

3. The Breaded Chicken Wings

Prepare the breading mix. In a bowl, mix a cup of flour,  a teaspoon of ground black pepper, a teaspoon of chili powder, and a dash of salt.

Prepare the eggs. In a separate bowl, break two eggs. Then add a teaspoon of ground black pepper, a teaspoon of chili powder, and a dash of salt.

Set a skillet, with about 1 ½ inch of oil, over a medium heat stove.

Then get a chicken wing, roll in breading mix, dip in beaten eggs,  and roll again in breading mix.

Gently lay breaded chicken wings in bubbling oil. Wait for 5 minutes, flip and continue for another 5 minutes.

Remove the breaded chicken wings from oil, and drain over a paper towel or a strainer.

4. The Grilled Chicken Wings

I know you’re excited because this is your favorite street food, the grilled chicken wings.

Get your smoker ready and set a good amount of wood coal in ember. Skewer the wings together with few apple and cucumber slices. Brush with marinade and grill for about 25-30 minutes, or to an internal temperature of 175ºF. For every 3 minutes, flip the wings and brush with marinade to ensure even grilling.

5. The Smoked Chicken Wings

This is not the cooking technique you see every day. Chicken wings are easy to cook that we don’t bother to think about smoking.  If you’ve got some spare time, try smoking your next batch of chicken wings.

Start to make the smoked chicken wings. Soak the chicken wings in marinade or rub with dry mix. Fire up your smoker grill and set the temperature to about 400ºF. Put some wood chips such as apple, maple or hickory. Then smoke for about 3 hours or to an internal temperature of 175ºF. Flip several times to ensure even doneness.   

6. Boiled Chicken Wings

For this boiled chicken wings, you need:

  1. 4-5 chicken wings
  2. 1 tbsp of thinly sliced ginger
  3. 3 star anise
  4. 1 cup soy sauce, light
  5. 2 cups of water
  6. 1 tsp powdered cinnamon
  7. 1 tbsp sugar
  8. ½ cup of oil

Then, stir fry the chicken wings. Lower the heat to medium. Add the rest of ingredients and simmer to thicken.  Arrange the boiled chicken wings to plate and garnish with chopped onion leeks.


How to you like to cook your chicken wings? I hope you’ve decided by now. Do you want to fry, boil, bake or smoke?  Share what you’ve just made to me or just share with your family and friends.

Smoking chicken wings requires the most time, effort, and materials. You must have a smoker grill installed outside your home. Besides, it needs about 3 hours cooking time.

Plain fried chicken wing is the easiest to prepare. Just toss few pieces on a hot oil and fry to a golden brown appearance. Soaking in marinade makes the time a bid longer but the reward is great.

Baking and grilling are similar by nature. May share the same ingredients set but use separate cooking devices. Oven for baking while grill for grilling.

I hope you’ve got a good time learning how to cook chicken wings. Enjoy what you’ve made with a healthy snack, such as boiled potato, mashed avocado and kale salad.

Read my article on 30 simple air fryer chicken recipes.

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