How to Make the Best Oven-Fried Chicken Wings

No deep fryer? No problem!

January 17, 2020

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It’s no secret that Guy Fieri loves wings — he’s often found seeking out the best in the country on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. On a recent episode of DDD, Guy tried Fiery Apple Wings, which get a kiss of sweetness from apple cider to offset the heat. On the Food Network Kitchen app, Dan Churchill uses apple cider in two ways in this class for his version of Fiery Apple Wings, inspired by the wings on the show. Plus, Dan teaches a foolproof three-step technique to help you make the tastiest, tangiest, crispiest wings at home — without a deep fryer.

Brine the Wings

While the tangy, apple-scented hot sauce is the crown on these wings, the process is what really makes them a keeper. Dan uses a one-two punch of brine and dry rub to ensure maximum flavor. “What usually happens is the outside of your protein is the most-flavorful part,” explains Dan, “but by adding in a brine it ensures the juicy center of the flash is just as, if not more, tasty.” Make sure you use enough ice to cool down the brine or it will start to cook the wings. After a few hours in the fridge, you’re ready to move on to the dry rub.

Use a Dry Rub

After brining, it’s important to pat the chicken wings dry before adding the dry rub so that it doesn't clump. Dan’s dry rub is a simple mixture of dried oregano, granulated garlic, onion powder, smoked paprika and salt. The smoked paprika adds extra smokiness that will make the final wings even more flavorful. “It’s one of my personal favorites,” says Dan. “Adds that really cool extra sizzle.” Coat the dried wings with the rub and then bake on a sheet pan lined with a rack to ensure even crispness.

Feel free to make extra rub and spread it on anything you want to have a smoky note. “You can make the rub and set it aside in a glass jar,” says Dan.

Make Your Own Sauce

The final step in any good wing recipe is the sauce. While you could just shake on some hot sauce and call it a day, traditional wing sauce is made by emulsifying melted butter with hot sauce. Dan’s easy sauce is similar to a traditional butter-based, Buffalo-style sauce but with the addition of apple cider and maple syrup for a balance of sweet and heat. “This is a great time to use your favorite hot sauce,” suggests Dan.

After baking, toss the hot crispy wings with the sweet and savory sauce until just coated and serve with your favorite cooling sauce and veggie sticks! Game on!

Cook along with Dan to taste the results at home and save the recipe to your Food Network Kitchen app. Follow the Wanna Make This? page for more recipe classes inspired by your favorite shows. Plus, watch new epsiodes of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives Fridays at 9|8c.

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