Air Fryer Chicken Wings

Air Fryer Wings

 The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 32 mins
Total: 37 mins
Servings: 8 servings

Air fryer wings are incredibly crispy, tender, and succulent without any extra oil. That means no frying, no mess, and less guilt. These wings are cooked twice in the air fryer for optimum crispiness; the first round is to cook the inside of the wings and to render off most of the fat from the skin. It makes the meat super juicy and allows the wings to hold all of their moisture. The second round is at a higher temperature and is what adds crispiness to the skin. Even with two rounds in the air fryer, these wings still only take about 35 minutes to cook.

The recipe calls for tossing in a traditional Buffalo sauce, but these wings are very tasty on their own; the cayenne gives them a nice kick while the other spices provide great flavor. Serve them with your favorite dipping sauce like blue cheese or ranch dressing.

Ingredients

  • For the Wings:
  • 2 pounds chicken wings (drumette and wingette separated)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • For the Buffalo Sauce:
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3/4 cup hot sauce
  • Garnish:
  • Chopped fresh chives

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for chicken wings
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  2. Pat the wings dry with paper towels. 

    Dry the chicken wings
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  3. Spread them out in a single layer and sprinkle with the salt, pepper, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper.

    Season the chicken wings
    The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney 
  4. Place all of the wings in the air fryer and set to 380 F. Cook for 25 minutes, pausing the air fryer every 5 minutes to toss the wings. 

    Air fry the chicken wings
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  5. Turn up the heat on the air fryer to 400 F and cook for another 5 to 10 minutes, until the wings are crispy and browned. If you like, you can cook the wings in a single layer in two batches for even more crispiness. 

    Air fried chicken wings
    The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney 
  6. To make the sauce, melt the butter in the microwave for about 1 minute or until melted. Whisk in the garlic powder and hot sauce until completely combined. Place it back in the microwave for about 1 minute to heat thoroughly. Make sure the sauce is at least warm before you toss it with the wings. 

    Make the wing sauce
    The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney 
  7. Place the wings in a large bowl. Drizzle the sauce over the top and toss to coat. Serve the wings immediately topped with chopped chives and alongside your favorite dipping sauce. 

  8. Enjoy.

Tips

  • Make sure to fry the wings at the two different temperatures. This makes them nice and crispy.
  • Don't toss the wings with the sauce until right before you are ready to serve. 
  • These wings are keto and gluten-free. 

Can These Wings Be Made Ahead?

  • The sauce can be made up to a week ahead of time; store in the refrigerator and reheat in the microwave.
  • You can do part of the prep and cooking of the wings ahead of time. Complete the first air fry at 380 F and then place the wings in a single layer on a baking sheet. (The wings shouldn't sit out at room temperature for more than 2 hours.) Finish with the second air fry shortly before serving and toss with the sauce if desired.
  • Although these wings are best eaten immediately, you can make them ahead and keep the wings warm in the oven (especially if sauced); they’re also delicious reheated in the air fryer as long as they are unsauced.

Recipe Variation

Instead of Buffalo sauce, you can toss these wings with a honey barbecue or a Thai sweet chili.