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Air Fryer Hot Honey Lemon Pepper Chicken Wings: Why have one wing flavour when you could have two?! These crispy wings are seasoned with a heat spice mix and coated in a hot honey lemon pepper glaze! Healthier than deep fried, these air fryer wings are the perfect appetizer to serve at any party!
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Lemon Pepper Meet Hot Honey
Instead of making a simple lemon pepper wings recipe (I have one coming, I promise) I decided to add some lemon pepper seasoning to my hot honey fried chicken recipe!
What to Love About These Hot Honey Lemon Pepper Wings
- Healthier than traditional wings: I’m not saying this chicken wing recipe should be added to your diet plan, but since we’re cooking them in an air fryer instead of frying, they’re a lot healthier than the wings you’d buy in a restaurant!
- Made in an air fryer: ah, the air fryer. Everybody’s new best friend! I bought one a few months ago so I’m long overdue for posting air fryer recipes. The air fryer gives these wings a super crisp skin!
- Double the flavour: you get the great flavours of lemon pepper wings and hot honey wings in each bite!
How to Make Air Fryer Chicken Wings — Step by Step
- Combine the seasoning mix: mix all your seasonings in a small bowl. I used smoked paprika, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, lemon pepper, cayenne pepper and hot chili powder.
- Season the chicken: add your chicken wings to a large bowl and toss with half of the seasonings.
- Coat chicken in cornstarch: toss them in cornstarch to make the wings even crispier! I added the other half of my seasoning mix to the cornstarch before dipping the wings in it and placing them on a wire rack. Repeat with the remaining wings.
- Air fry the wings: preheat your air fryer to 390°F and press the “air crisp” button. Then spray your air fryer basket with nonstick cooking spray just to make sure the wings don’t stick to it. Place your wings in the basket in a single layer, spray more cooking spray on top, then cook for 25 minutes, turning every 5 minutes.
- Make the hot honey lemon pepper sauce: this sauce is made just like the hot honey sauce in my previous chicken recipe, the only difference is that I added fresh lemon juice and lemon pepper seasoning to it.
- Coat the wings: add the wings to the sauce and toss to coat. Serve immediately with any dipping sauce you prefer!
What Type of Air Fryer Should I Use?
There are many different types of air fryers out there that you can use. For this recipe, I used the Ninja 4-in-1 grill/air fryer (I could not find a link for the exact one I used, but here's a similar version) which I’m completely obsessed with (I mean it’s an air fryer AND an indoor grill!).
Can I Bake These Wings Instead?
Yes, but I should let you know they won’t be AS crispy as they would be in an air fryer.
If baking the wigs, leave out the cornstarch completely and just coat the wings in all the seasoning. Then place the wings on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and topped with a wire rack. Bake wings in a preheated 425°F oven for 25 minutes, flip and cook for another 25-30 minutes or until the wings are golden brown and crispy.
Tips for the Best Air Fryer Wings
- Clean your chicken: I don’t care what anyone says, CLEAN YOUR CHICKEN! I always do this before cooking them, then pat them completely dry with paper towels to get rid of any moisture (find detailed instructions on how to clean chicken in the recipe card below).
- Use whole chicken wings: if you want to save money, go to your local butcher shop or grocery store and buy a package of whole chicken wings. The whole versions are usually cheaper than the pre-split fresh chicken wings because you’ll have to split the chicken and cut off the wing tips yourself. I used pre-split wings because they were all that was available for me.
- Don’t overcrowd the air fryer: you want the air to circulate throughout the air fryer so all of your chicken can crisp up evenly. If all your wings can’t fit, cook in 2 batches.
- Flip the wings every 5 minutes: to make sure both sides of the wings are being cooked evenly, flip the wings every 5 minutes.
- Cooking time will vary: I only have one air fryer so the cooking time is based on how long mine can cook the chicken. The time may be the same for you if you have a different air fryer, or it may be quicker or shorter. This is another reason why it’s a good idea to flip your wings every 5 minutes, you can check to see if they’re done or not instead of just letting them sit for the entire time only to find out they’ve burned.
Storage Tips + Reheating
While the wings are best served fresh if you have leftover wings they can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Reheat in a 350°F oven for a few minutes so they can retain their crispy skin.
Tools I Recommend For This Recipe
- Mixing Bowl Set: you’ll need a bowl to season your chicken, hold the cornstarch mixture, and toss the cooked wings so a mixing bowl set will certainly come in handy!
- Food Safe Gloves: while your clean bare hands will work fine, I like to wear a pair of food-safe gloves when handling my chicken.
- Baking Sheet/Wire Rack Set: if you’re baking the wings, a baking sheet/wire rack set is the way to go! Baking wings on a rack ensures their extra crispy on both sides!
- Parchment Paper: to make cleanup easier, line your baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Small Saucepan: you can make your sauce in a small saucepan, or a frying pan like I did.
- Tongs: using tongs will make flipping your wings a lot easier.
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Let’s get air frying!
To Clean The Chicken:
- 1lb fresh chicken wings, split into drums and flats
- 1 lime, sliced
- 2 cups cold water
- 2 cups white vinegar
- 2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 and ½ teaspoons salt
- 1 and ½ teaspoons onion powder
- 1 and ½ teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon hot chilli powder
- 1 cup cornstarch
- Nonstick cooking spray
Hot Honey Lemon Pepper Sauce:
- ¼ cup unsalted butter
- 1 cup hot sauce (I used Franks Red Hot)
- 1 cup honey
- 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 Tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning
Washing and Drying the Wings:
- Add your chicken wings to a bowl. Add lime slices, water and vinegar. Use your hand to mix around and wash the wings thoroughly, then drain the water.
- Line the wet wings on a paper towel-lined baking sheet, then use another large sheet of paper towel to pat the wings dry completely.
For the Chicken Wings:
- Place a wire rack on top of a baking sheet. Set aside.
- Preheat your air fryer to 390°F. In a small bowl, combine the seasonings.
- Place all the chicken in a medium bowl, then sprinkle on 1 and ½ tablespoons of the seasoning blend.
- Use a wooden spoon or your clean hands to toss the wings until they’re coated with the seasoning.
- In a separate bowl, combine the cornstarch with the remaining seasoning mix.
- Dip the wings, one at a time, into the seasoned cornstarch and shake off the excess. Place on the wire rack while you dip the rest.
- Once all the wings are coated, spray your air fryer basket with cooking spray, then place the wings in a single layer.
- Cook wings in the preheated air fryer for 25 minutes, flipping every 5 minutes. Spray the top of the wings with more cooking spray after 10 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the sauce.
For the Hot Honey Lemon Pepper Sauce:
- Add the unsalted butter to a medium saucepan over medium heat. Heat until melted.
- Once butter has melted, add the hot sauce and honey. Stir until completely combined.
- Pour in the lemon juice and lemon pepper seasoning and stir, then allow to come to a simmer.
- Turn off the heat and whisk until smooth.
- Add the chicken to a clean large bowl, then pour some of the sauce on top. Toss until all the wings are coated.
- Set the remaining sauce aside for dipping! Serve immediately and enjoy!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 906Total Fat: 40gSaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 123mgSodium: 1650mgCarbohydrates: 117gFiber: 3gSugar: 72gProtein: 21g
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