Smoked Chicken Wings

The best chicken wing you’ll ever have is the one off your own grill. I have been experimenting with different methods and recipes for smoked wings. What I describe here is now my tried and true recipe for the best wings ever! This is my go-to for tailgate parties. For large groups, I typically complete Step 1 days or weeks before the event, then finish with Steps 2 and 3 at the event. It is a 3-step process.

Step 1

Start with whole, fresh wings, not just drums or wings, but the whole piece. Season with your favorite poultry rub. I use McCormick Rotisserie Chicken Rub. Place on your smoker at it’s lowest setting (smoke in the case of my Traeger) and let go for 5 hours.

Once smoked, you can remove, vacuum seal and freeze until ready to eat. Or, you can go right to the finishing step.

Step 2

Crank up the heat. Get your grill as hot as it can go. I use direct heat on my Weber Genesis gas grill. Grill the wings until they are charred and crisp. If they just came off the smoker, about 4 minutes, flipping every minute so they don’t become charcoal. If you are cooking from the freezer, it could take 8-10 minutes. Alternatively, you can deep fry them for a few minutes at 375. You could also use indirect heat on the smoker, setting the grill for as hot as it will go. However, this method will not char the wing. The point is, you need to crisp up the skin. High heat is the only way to do that.

Step 3

Once crisp, you can chow down on the seasoned wing, or toss it in your favorite sauce. My go to is a hot garlic wing sauce you can make with this recipe. You can either toss and serve the wings in the sauce, or return them to the grill for a couple of minutes/side to set up the sauce.

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