Smoked Wings

Smoked chicken wings are hands down one of my most favorite recipes to make when we have friends over. They require minimum prep, zero babysitting, and they always impress. I’ve made these half a dozen times now and never had a failure, so I can assure you won’t either.

one left

I have never been a fan of fried chicken wings. Greasy, messy, and generally lacking flavor. I mean, pure burning spice is not a flavor, people. Not to mention, the wings you get at restaurants are not exactly from happy, healthy chickens. The chicken wings at the grocery store that Scott held up to me yesterday, at $1.09 a pound and a quarter pound each, were not. Normal. Chickens. The fact that grocery stores can got away with selling that is amazing to me…but that’s another story.


But the first time I had smoked wings. It was magical. Ethereal. I had to figure it out.

I was sure there was some big secret.

dry rub

Turns out, it’s just dry rub and a good amount of time on smoke.


Just like all great barbeque.


Smoked Wings

Dry Rub:

  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne powder
  • 1 tsp chipotle powder
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • About 3 lbs chicken wings (pastured &/or organic preferred)
  1. Coat chicken with dry rub — about 1 tbsp rub per pound. Use your eye to make sure it’s coated to your satisfaction. Refrigerate at least one hour, up to overnight. Pull out of the fridge about an hour before you’re ready to grill.
  2. Preheat grill to medium-low heat (you want to maintain about 325 degrees). Soak wood chunk or chips for smoking. I’ve used mesquite and applewood to delicious effect. Add to grill.
  3. Spread coals into a low and even and place wings on grate. Smoke until cooked through, 45 minutes to 1.5 hours, depending on temp (I aim for 1.5 hours at 325). It’s been my experience that it’s hard to overcook these, especially if the heat is low enough. You have a nice big window.
  4. Try to let them cool off for 5-10 minutes before devouring the whole batch.

smoked wings



One comment

  1. […] Smoked wings much better than those fried ones you ordered last year that lost their crunch before kickoff. […]

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