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I've tried to smoke wings twice and did not like the results I got. Both times I tried variations of recipies with baking powder or corn starch as a final coating that was supposed to yield crisp skin on the wings and they were not good at all. Eldest daughter makes wings frequently that are pretty good. She does them in her electric smoker. Here is the recipe she uses:
Put the wings or wing sections into a large zip lock bag. In a mixing bowl add 2 cups of your favorite Hot Sauce, 1 bottle of Zesty Italian Dressing, ½ cup Soy Sauce, and ½ cup Worcestershire Sauce.
Mix the ingredients and pour into the bag with the wings. Squeeze as much air out as possible and toss the wings around so the marinade covers everything. Place the bag of wings in a cooler on ice. Let the wings marinate for at least 3-4 hours or overnight.
Take the chicken wings out of the marinade, let the excess marinade drip off, and arrange them on the rack. Season each side with a light dose of Killer Hog’s AP Rub (Salt, Pepper, Garlic) then a light dust of Killer Hogs The BBQ Rub. Smoke at 275⁰ with a mix of cherry and hickory.
Smoke the wings for 1 hour then flip the wings over and hit them with a little extra rub.
Smoke for an additional 30 min – 1 hour and the wings are done and ready to serve. Toss them in any sauce you like.
I've had the thought of finishing off her smoked wings for a few minutes in the Air Fryer to crisp them up a little but have not actually tried that, so that may just be a spurious thought.
I had to laugh a little reading the rub recipe since it adds Jamaica jerk seasoning that has a lot of the same ingredients as in the rest of the rub recipe. Would be easy to just add the other flavors (a pinch of allspice, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg and thyme) to the rest of the mix without sourcing a Jamaican jerk powder.
This past week had some tasty smoked wings from a place near the beach we visited. The place smoked pork butts and wings each day and closed when they sold out the day's batch. He had the day's smoked wings in the refrigerator. To serve them he put them in the deep fryer for about 1 to 1.5 minutes to warm them and crisp them then put the sauce on. They did have some crisp to them as well as the smokey flavor. I'm thinking the air fryer will work to crisp up the smoked wings. Now. I just need to make a batch.