A Trick to Make Smoked Wings Extra Crispy

A Trick to Make Smoked Wings Extra Crispy

February 24, 2021 0 By Admiral BigGun

Polar Plunge for Special Olympics MN TAILGATEMASTER.COM Admiral BigGun

It’s no secret that I very much enjoy chicken wings. When I am prepping for a tailgate I love being able to add an additional layer of flavor by using a smoker, but if you have ever done this, you know that using a smoker is a FAN-tastic way to get a tender cut of meat, but probably not the best tool for getting an extra crispy skin.

This is one of the reasons I like to make wings in two phases.

Phase One : Smokey

I start by taking my thawed, uncooked wings and placing them in a gallon freezer bag and adding the seasoning. Salt, Pepper & Garlic, makes a fine base, but feel free to add whatever you like best for your wings.

REMINDER: Make sure to wash your hands immediately after handling raw chicken. We don’t want that spreading to anything else we may come in contact with.

Seal the bag and shake vigorously to completely coat the wings surfaces. Then place bag in fridge (or cooler) until you are ready to put them in your smoker.

Prep your smoker grates with non-stick cooking spray to prevent sticking and help with easier clean up later.

Fire up your smoker using your usual method. Don’t forget to add water and wood.

Once up to temp (around 220F) add your wings (Yes… remove wings from the freezer bag first, and discard the bag) in a single layer on your grate. Cover and let smoke low and slow.

chicken wings on the top rack of a charcoal smoker
Slow cook on the top rack (indirect heat)

Once internal temp reaches 155F. This may take anywhere from 1-3 hours depending on your method of smoking. Once you have reached your desired heat, remove from smoker and set aside to cool.

NOTE: The USDA recommends that chicken and poultry be cooked to a minimum internal temperature of 165F… so you do what you feel is best. For extra thick wings… I would certainly bring it up to 165F and then allow to cool.

Once wings have reached room temperature, I seal them in new freezer bag or other covered container and put them in a refrigerator until phase two. TIP: If it is going to be a few days before your event, you can certainly put them in the freezer.

Phase Two: Crispy

At this point we already have fully cooked wings that are ready to become more awesome. Remove wings from storage container and place in Air Fryer. Try to stagger the wings so that you have as much space between them as possible. Stacking is great… just try to leave as many air gaps round them as you can.

The amount of time to cook can very depending upon how full the basket is. Feel free to check progress in 5 minute intervals.

Cook at 400F for 8-10 minutes. Remove basket and shake/flip the wings over and then continue to cook for an additional 3-5 minutes.

Depending upon thickness and how cool or frozen the wings were when you started, and how large your Air Fryer is. You may have to go as much as 16 minutes.

Remove from basket and place on paper towels.

Coat with your favorite BBQ sauce or Dipping sauce.