How long should you cook chicken wings in the oven? Find out the exact time, temperature, and preparation tips for perfect wings every time.
This post was sponsored by Fire and Flavor. All opinions are my own.
How Long to Cook Chicken Wings in the Oven
Are you craving crispy chicken wings without all that messy frying, but you don’t know how long to cook them, or at what temperature?
It’s shocking how much wrong information is out there about cooking wings in the oven. Lucky for you I have tested multiple batches of wings to find out what really, actually works.
I’ll give you the rundown on what to buy, what to set your oven for, how to prep, and how long to cook those wings so they are perfect every time. Bonus: some fabulous seasoning ideas from Fire and Flavor!
Let’s get started.
Although you can purchase wings as whole wings, they are usually cut into drumettes (they look like little drumsticks, but are not drumsticks) and flats.
I recommend fresh chicken wings that are already cut into drumettes and flats. You can cut whole wings into drumettes and flats, but it’s much easier if they already come that way.
Fresh, not frozen. Frozen wings don’t cook right in the oven—they’re harder to crisp, and the texture of the meat is not as good.
You’ll run across a lot of different recipes for oven-baked wings, with recommended temperatures that range from oddly low to scorchingly high.
You don’t need to go crazy high, but you do need the temperature to be high enough to create a crispy skin and nice, even browning.
Set your oven to 425°F.
Everyone wants crispy wings, but the pursuit of crispiness has led to some unfortunate recommendations. And then, because this is the internet, those bad recommendations get copied and repeated everywhere.
For the love of all that is holy, please DO NOT put baking powder or baking soda on your chicken wings. I don’t care what those viral recipes say. Yes, you can taste it. Yuck!
And boiling the wings before cooking? That’s madness. Please don’t.
Also, you may read everywhere that you need to dry the wings overnight before cooking. You can do this—it won’t harm the wings—but it’s not necessary.
Are you ready for the truth?
To boost the crispiness, follow these instructions.
- Do not salt before cooking. Salt draws moisture to the surface, and that moisture prevents crispiness.
- Do not add sauce before or during the cooking process. It will destroy all crispiness.
- Use parchment paper over foil, instead of a rack. Direct contact with the pan (through the parchment paper and foil) increases the heat, which increases the crispiness. Also, it’s way easier than cleaning a rack covered in stuck-on skin and fat.
- Don’t crowd the wings. Leave space in between. They shouldn’t be touching.
- Dust with cornstarch. THIS WORKS. Apply the cornstarch in a thin layer, then smooth it over the chicken skin. Use about 1 tablespoon of cornstarch per 1 pound of wings. (Think of it as if you were applying cornstarch to your own skin—you’d sprinkle it on, then smooth it out. Weird, but accurate!)
- Let the wings rest for a few minutes before adding any flavorings. That will give them time to cool off and firm up, which sets the crispiness.
Bake the chicken wings at 425°F for 1 hour. Turn once after 30 minutes. When done, they will be very deep golden brown. If not (because ovens and chicken wings vary), keep adding 5 minutes until you get the color you see in the photo.
Fire and Flavor Wing Finish is a sure bet to get that perfectly seasoned flavor without guesswork, and it comes in Sea Salt & Vinegar, Georgia Q, and Lemon Pepper flavors. All-natural, gluten-free, kosher, non-GMO, and easy to use. Let wings cool for 5 minutes on the pan, then toss them with Wing Finish and serve!
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