This chili oil chicken wing recipe is super easy to make, and you can prepare most of it ahead of time.
No game day party is complete without wings, and unlike your parley, these are a sure thing.
Chili oil is easy to make, and any leftovers will go great on eggs, pork belly, noodles, sandwiches, and even vegetables. The possibilities are endless here!
Chili Oil Chicken Wings on the Smoker
The key to this recipe is making your own chili oil by combing fresh ginger and garlic with dried chili flakes and then pouring over hot oil.
For the best flavor, use Gochugaru which is a type of Korean chili flake. If you can’t get your hands on it, Aleppo or regular chili flakes will work.
You could easily cook these wings in the oven or on the grill away from the direct heat, but my favorite method is to use a smoker for a little extra flavor.
I am a huge fan of using pellet grills. They are typically large enough to cook a huge batch of wings in a single batch.
For this cook, I used my new Camp Chef Woodwind Pro 36.
I have been using this grill for a few months now, and I am beyond impressed with what this pellet grill is capable of. You get the convenience of a pellet grill but the ability to add the flavor of a charcoal smoker by throwing wood or charcoal into their firebox.
How to make chili oil chicken wings
1. Get your grill fired up
Get your grill or smoker set up to cook at 350°F. Allow 20 minutes for the grill to preheat.
I used the Gourmet Blend from Bear Mountain BBQ, which consists of Oak, Hickory, Maple, and Cherry hardwoods giving it some great smoke flavor.
2. Season your wings
If you bought whole chicken wings, separate the drums and flats by cutting each part of the wing with a sharp knife at the knuckle.
Place the wings in a bowl, then coat them with an olive oil binder which will help the seasoning stick to the chicken wings.
Season your wings with a salt, pepper, and garlic blend and the cornstarch. I added some of our Honey Garlic rub for a little extra kick.
Thoroughly mix the chicken wings to ensure each wing is properly coated.
3. Smoke the wings
Place your seasoned wings directly on the grates of the preheated grill.
Since I cooked these wings on my new Camp Chef Woodwind Pro, I added a chunk of cherry wood to the Smoke Box for some extra flavor.
This is optional, and there are plenty of other ways to get more smoke flavor on your pellet grill.
After 30 minutes of cooking, flip your wings over and let them cook for another 30 minutes. This allows the wings to cook evenly on the inside and give you a super delicious crispy skin on the outside (this is where the cornstarch helps us out with drying out the skin).
4. Making your chili oil
Place your oil in a pot and place it on the stovetop over medium heat. Once the oil is at 375°F, it is ready to be used for the final step. I used canola oil for this recipe, but avocado oil is another great option.
Prepare your garlic and ginger by mincing fresh produce. Then combine them in a porcelain bowl with the other dry ingredients.
Be sure that you are using a bowl/dish that is safe/ made to handle hot oil. Do not use a standard bowl or cup – this could crack due to the heat.
When the oil reaches 375°F, carefully pour it into the porcelain bowl with all the other ingredients. All of the ingredients will sizzle, and there will be a lot of steam that comes from the dish.
Once it is done sizzling and the steam is gone, carefully stir the ingredients in the bowl then set aside for later.
You can store any leftover chili oil in a mason jar and refrigerate it for the week. My favorite thing to do is top some eggs with the chili oil for a little extra kick in the morning.
5. Finish and serve
Once your crispy, juicy wings have reached an internal temperature of 185°F, remove them from the grill and place them in a large bowl.
Top the chicken wings with your cooled down chili oil then either stir or toss them to ensure they are all coated in the chili oil.
You can serve them up immediately, or you can actually throw them back on the grill for 5 minutes on high to make your wings even crispier.
Optional: serve them up with a dipping sauce of your choice. These wings are packed with flavor so this is totally your call!
Other wings recipes to try
If you are anything like me, you like to have multiple flavor options of wings to feast on. You can easily grill up a huge pile of wings with the same seasoning, then top them with a different sauce.
For the wings
- 3 lb whole chicken wings
- 2 tbsp salt pepper and garlic blend Store bought is fine, or combine equal parts ground pepper, garlic powder and salt
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tbsp Smoke Kitchen Honey Garlic rub Optional
For the chili oil
- 1 cup canola oil Any deep frying oil will work fine
- 1 minced shallot
- 5 cloves minced garlic
- 1 tbsp minced ginger
- ¼ cup korean chili flakes Also known as Gochugaru. Substitute with Aleppo flakes, or paprika
- ½ tbsp crushed red pepper
- ½ tsp salt
- Setup your grill or smoker to 350°F and allow 20 minutes to preheat.
- Meanwhile, seperate the wings into the drums and flats and place in a large bowl. Season with the SPG rub, cornstarch and optional Honey Garlic rub.
- Place your wings on the grill, away from any direct heat, and close the lid and let them cook for 30 minutes.
- Heat oil in a pan to 400°F. Combine all of the dry chili oil ingredients into a heatproof dish then carefully pour in your hot oil. Mix ingredients and set aside for later.
- After 30 minutes, flip the wings and let them cook for another 30 minutes or until they have reached an internal temp of 185°F.
- Remove wings from the grill and place in a large bowl. Top with the chili oil and mix them in the bowl to ensure they are coated.
- You can place wings back on the grill for 5 minutes on high if the skin doesn't look crispy enough.
- Serve up and enjoy!