Long live the chicken wing! We show our love for them by ordering them in restaurants and bars, getting them to go and eating immediately, or getting them to go and reheating them at home. Heck, sometimes we even cook them up ourselves, like when there isn't a Buffalo Wings & Rings restaurant nearby to satisfy our cravings.
If you aren't near your favorite BWR location this holiday season or want to try your hand at making your own chicken wings, then we might suggest an Instant Pot. They cook in a flash and the handy kitchen appliance makes for a great way to render the fat out of the chicken wing on its first cooking.
To learn more about this method, we sat down with Chef Dan who explained the ins and outs of chicken wing Instant Pot cooking, including an easy recipe you can try at home, a couple of his favorite sauce and rub preparations. So, who's ready to get cookin'?
What is an Instant Pot?
An Instant Pot is a small, multifunctional kitchen appliance that acts as a pressure cooker, a slow cooker, a steamer, a frying pan, and even a rice cooker.
As a pressure cooker, the Instant Pot uses steam pressure to quickly cook your food. Unlike a slow cooker, you won't need to wait all day to eat your meal. Some recipes can be done in as little as 10 minutes. And there is very little clean up involved when using an Instant Pot.
Chef Dan loves the Instant Pot for its convenience and speed. "If you don't have the time, then you'll need to use less traditional cooking methods," Chef Dan says. "I think it's a great convenience and I think it's a viable alternative for home cooking to a fryer."
How do you cook chicken wings in an Instant Pot?
When cooking wings in an Instant Pot, Chef Dan recommends putting the wings on a metal rack (the one your pot comes with, or you can use another round metal rack that fits into the bottom) and add water to create the steam. "The key to really great chicken wings is to render all the fat out from under the skin to make them crispy," Chef Dan says. "Cook until they're thoroughly done and when you open the lid. You'll notice the water at the bottom will have all of the fat [in it] that's been cooked out from under the skin. That’s a good start."
At this point, the wings are safe to sauce and eat. But, if you'd like them to be closer to restaurant quality and to get them crispier, Chef Dan recommends then putting them on a sheet pan under the broiler, turning halfway through and cooking until they are golden brown and crisp.
Chef Dan recommends that you add any sauces or spices last, so they don't slough off in the Instant Pot or bake off in the oven. While we describe two ways to serve them below, Chef Dan says you can also choose any flavor you like from among numerous sauce varieties in the grocery store. "In the ethnic food aisles and where the barbecue sauces are located you’ll find 20-30 different kinds of sauce [you can buy]. "Then of course you have dry rubs such as Cajun or lemon pepper seasoning," he says.
Instant Pot Chicken Wings Recipe
You're just a few minutes away from cooking up a big batch of wings in an instant!
- 3 lbs of thawed or fresh chicken wings (tips and extra fat trimmed off and drummette and wings separated, if necessary)
- 1 cup of water
- Add 1 cup of water to the inner pot of your Instant Pot.
- Put the steamer basket or rack inside, on top of the water (it's okay if it touches the water).
- Place the wings in the basket or rack.
- Seal your Instant Pot lid, turning the valve to its "locked"position.
- Set the manual timer for 10 minutes.
- While the wings cook, line a baking sheet with foil and preheat your broiler to high.
- Allow the pressure to come down on its own for 2 minutes, then do a quick release to release the rest of the steam (be careful, the steam will be hot).
- Remove wings from the Instant Pot with tongs and place on the foil-lined baking sheet.
- Place the wings under the broiler for 8 minutes total, flipping the wings to the other side at the 4-minute mark.
- Remove from the broiler and place in a heat-safe bowl to add your wing sauce. Shake sauce onto the wings (or use clean tongs to toss) and serve.
Gochujang is a Korean chili paste that's a little hot and a little sweet, and it happens to be one of Chef Dan's favorites. Try this homemade version on your Instant Pot wings today!
- 2 tbsp butter
- 5 tbsp Gochujang
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 cloves of minced garlic
- 1 tbsp ginger
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp rice wine (you can use water if you don't have rice wine)
- 2 tbsp rice vinegar
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- Sesame seeds or chopped green onions for garnish
- Melt butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Once it starts to melt, add the minced garlic and stir into the butter for 1-2 minutes or until it gets a little browned and fragrant.
- Add the Gochujang to the butter and garlic and whisk or use a wooden spoon to loosen the paste up (it will be very thick at first).
- To the saucepan, add the rest of the ingredients through the rice vinegar, stirring with each addition.
- Cook the sauce over medium-low heat for another 5 minutes or so until it starts to thicken. Turn off the heat and stir in the sesame oil.
- Pour over wings in a bowl and toss, serve with sesame seeds and/or sliced green onions and a side of celery and blue cheese dressing.
Lemon Pepper Dry Rub
- 2 tbsp Lemon Pepper spice
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- Whisk the lemon pepper and olive oil together in a bowl until combined.
- Toss cooked wings with lemon pepper mixture in a bowl to coat and serve.
If this is too much work for your taste, sit back and relax. We’ll do the work for you. Order online here.