Smoked Chicken Wings – TheOnlineGrill.com

Delicious smoked chicken wings perfect for any occasion. These BBQ wings are prepared in a simple brine for extra moisture before fired over applewood for beautifully tender but crispy wings.

smoked chicken wings

Smoked chicken wings are perfect for barbecue beginners and smoke pros alike thanks to their quick cook time and easy meat prep. This gameday and party classic always goes down a storm and is the perfect place to start if you need to feed a crowd.

One of the best things about chicken wings is how little time they take from scratch. They only need a quick two-hour brine to lock in moisture before just one hour on the smoker to get them up to temperature. We’ll then give them a quick sear over direct high heat to give them that perfect crispy finish.

From perfecting the salt and sugar brine to choosing the best wood chips, discover how to smoke chicken wings today.

smoked chicken wings

How to Smoke Chicken Wings

Chicken wings are easy to smoke thanks to their lean meat content and small size, and only take an hour to do. Check out our full recipe at the bottom of this article, but the process can be broken down into these simple steps:

  1. Fire Up: Fire up your smoker to 250-275°F (121-135°C). If you’re using a charcoal grill, ensure you are set up for 2-zone cooking. The wings will go on the indirect zone, but the direct zone will come in handy for our sear finish later.
  2. Prep the Meat: After brining your wings, pat them dry to remove excess brine solution and coat in dry rub seasoning. You can either use our BBQ rub recipe below or use a store-bought rub. Apply a thin layer of canola oil first – this will act as an adhesive for the rub spirit help turn the wings crispy.
  3. Smoking: Arrange the chicken wings on your smoker’s grates and smoke for 45-60 minutes, until the internal temperature hits 155°F (68°C)
  4. Sears: Crank up your smoker or grill’s heat to high and grill your wings directly over the heat for a couple of minutes on each side.
  5. Serving: Chuck the wings into a large bowl and toss in barbecue sauce, or serve as they are. Plate up and enjoy!
smoked chicken wings

Smoked Chicken Wings

Delicious smoked chicken wings perfect for any occasion. These BBQ wings are prepared in a simple brine for extra moisture before fired over applewood for beautifully tender but crispy wings.

Course Appetizer, Side Dish
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 20 minutes
  • 5 lbs chicken wings
  • 1 tbsp canola oil

Brine

  • 3 quarts water room temperature
  • ½ cup kosher salt
  • cup brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbsp ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup cider vinegar

Dry Rub Seasoning

  • 1 tbsp dried thyme
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp ground black pepper

Two Serves (All Optional)

  • 1 cup barbecue sauce
  • 1 cup blue cheese dip

Brine

  • In a brining bucket, add the water, salt, brown sugar, red pepper flakes, ground black pepper, and cider vinegar. Use a whisk to stir. Combine until the salt and sugar have dissolved.

  • Submerge the chicken wings in the bucket, ensuring the wings are kept below the water surface using the bucket lid

  • Cover the bucket and transfer to the refrigerator. Leave the wings to brine for 2 hours.

Fire Up

  • Fire up your smoker to 275°F (135°C). Add wood chips to your smoker’s wood tray or smoker box. Ensure your smoker’s water pan is filled with fresh water. If you’re using a charcoal grill, ensure you are set up for 2-zone cooking. The wings will go on the indirect zone.

Dry Rub

  • Remove wings from the brine and rinse lightly with water. Pat dry with paper towels to remove excess moisture.

  • Combine all dry rub ingredients in a small bowl. Use a fork to remove any lumps that may appear.

  • Coat the chicken wings in a thin layer of canola oil. Apply dry rub seasoning to each wing, covering evenly on all sides.

Smoke

  • Arrange chicken wings on smoker grates. Place any smaller pieces further away from your heat (these will cook faster).

  • Close the smoker door or lid and smoke until the meat’s internal temperature has reached 155°F (68°C), approximately 1 hour. Use a meat probe for an accurate reading. Remove from the smoker and cover with aluminum foil.

Serve

  • Remove from the grill and throw into a large bowl. Coat and toss in barbecue sauce.

  • Plate up and serve with your choice of blue cheese dip, barbecue sauce, or other dipping sauces. Enjoy immediately.

Calories: 502kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 39g | Dish: 36g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 157mg | Sodium: 1358mg | Potassium: 464mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 0.5g | Vitamin A: 1820IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 63mg | Iron: 4mg

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