Our family recipe for sticky Chinese Chicken Wings! Tossed in a savoury, sweet, garlicky Asian marinade, then baked in the oven and basted until deeply golden and very, very sticky…..
As with ribs, there’s no way to look elegant when you annihilate a plate of wings. And we wouldn’t have it any other way!
Sticky Chinese Chicken Wings
These Sticky Chinese Chicken Wings are so moorish, once you start you won’t be able to stop!
This ismy family recipe for Sticky Chinese Chicken Wings which has been tweaked and perfected over years, with input from everyone (mother, brother, sister and me) and many heated debates! We finally agreed this is The Recipe and have been loyal to it for years and I don’t see it changing soon. After all, why tinker with perfection?
The marinade for this recipe is a perfect balance of slightly spicy (very mild), salty, sweet with a touch of tang, and the subtle fragrance of Chinese Five Spice from hoisin sauce as well as five spice powder.
Chicken Wing Marinade
Here’s what you need for the Chinese chicken wing marinade.
We have a rule thatitis acceptable to omitone ingredient from the marinade, but if you are missing more than one, then don’t bother making it……. 😂 However, it IS acceptable to substitute with similar ingredients, and I’ve provided a fairly lengthy list of “acceptable” substitutions in the recipe!
(PS If you’re querying the inclusion of ketchup in this marinade – yes, it really is used in Chinese cooking and you’ll find it used in other Chinese recipes you know and love like Sweet and Sour Chicken!)
Chinese Cooking Wine
*Chinese cooking wine (Shaoxing / shaoshing wine) is, as with many Chinese recipes, the “secret ingredient” that takes this marinade from “tasty” to “NAILED IT!!” It’s an essential ingredient in all your favourite Chinese restaurant recipes, from Fried Rice to Beef and Broccoli,Chow Meinto Cashew Chicken. It adds complexity to the flavour as well as seasoning (it’s salty).
I use it so often, I even wrote an entire post about it! If you’ve ever followed a recipe for a Chinese takeout copycat recipe but found it just wasn’t quite as good as the real deal, the missing ingredient was probably Chinese cooking wine.
You can get a bottle for $2 (sometimes less!) from Asian stores, though it’s sold in grocery stores in Australia nowadays. It lasts “forever” in the pantry, and I use it in virtually every Chinese recipe.
I try to include substitutions in every recipe and in this case, the best substitutes for Chinese Cooking Wine are (in order of preference):
Dry sherry(Video) Sticky Chinese Chicken Wings
Drinking sake or other drinking rice wine
The chicken wings
I typically make my wings recipes using wings that have been cut into drumettes (the mini chicken leg / drumstick looking part) and wingettes (the other part). Most grocery stores sell them pre cut, otherwise, follow the steps in these Ultra Crispy Baked Chicken Wings recipefor how to cut them OR cook them whole.
How to make it
The making part is very simple:
mix the Chinese chicken wing marinade and pour over wings;
marinade for a mere 10 to 15 minutes – don’t marinade for longer otherwise it will make the wings too salty and also makes the marinade watery (from drawing moisture out of the wings) which makes it harder to baste;
Spread wings out on tray lined withfoil and paper. Yes, use both. You’ll thank me later – when you’re sleeping tonight instead of scraping super-glued marinade off the tray; and
bake for 50 minutes until golden and sticky, basting 2 – 3 times with reserved marinade and tray juices.
How to serve these Chinese wings
I must admit, the times I have enjoyed this the most have involved a few glasses of wine….this is theultimate midnight snack. Forget kebab stands, we need chicken wing carts outside pubs and clubs, and definitely at every taxi queue! 😂
So they really do makefabulous finger food for sharing, whether passing around as a starter or a casual grazing-platter style gathering.
Orserve these chicken wings as a meal with a side of Fried Rice and a fresh, crunchy Asian Slaw.
However you serve it, be sure to have plenty of napkins handy – or to suck each an every finger clean!!– Nagi x
Watch how to make it
Sticky Chinese Chicken Wings
Author: Nagi | RecipeTin Eats
Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 50 mins
Total: 1 hr
Appetizer, Finger Food, Main, Party Food, Snacks
4.97 from 116 votes
Servings6 - 8
Tap or hover to scale
Recipe video above. My family recipe for the ultimate Sticky Chinese Wings, perfected over years with many heated debates! Many of the ingredients can be substituted and you'll still get a similar flavour - refer to the notes. Spiciness: A hint of spicy from the chilli sauce, can be omitted.
- 1.5 kg /3 lb chicken wings , cut into drumettes and wingettes (Note 1)
Chicken Wing Marinade (Note 2 for substitutions)
- 1/2 tsp sesame oil , toasted
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp Chinese cooking wine (Shaoxing wine, sub Mirin, dry sherry)
- 2 tbsp soy sauce , light or all purpose
- 2 tbsp brown sugar or honey
- 1 1/2 tbsp hoisin sauce
- 1 1/2 tbsp oyster sauce
- 1/4 cup ketchup or Aussie tomato sauce
- 1 tbsp chilli garlic sauce or sambal oelek (adjust spiciness to taste)
- 4 cloves garlic , minced
- 1 tbsp ginger , finely grated
- 1/2 tsp five spice powder
- Finely sliced shallots/scallions
- Sesame seeds
- Coriander/cilantro leaves
- Finely sliced fresh chili
Mix Marinade ingredients.
Place wings in large bowl, pour over Marinade and toss well. Set aside for 10 minutes - do not marinate for longer than 1 hour. (Note 3)
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F.
Line baking tray with foil then greaseproof paper (you'll thank me later).
Shake excess marinade off wings (but reserve the marinade) and spread on baking tray - can be fairly snug but not super squished (use 2 trays if needed).
Bake 45 - 50 minutes, basting with a brush at 25 minutes and 35 minutes, using the reserved marinade and juieces on the tray.(Video) Sticky Baked Chinese Chicken Wings
The meat should be able to be pulled off the bones quite easily, they should be just starting to char on the edges and a sticky, dark red/golden colour all over.
Sprinkle with garnishes - coriander/cilantro leaves, sesame seeds, chilli, sliced shallots/scallions - then serve!
1. Chicken wings - I like to make these with wings that have been cut into wingettes and drumettes. You can either buy them pre cut like that, or cut whole wings yourself (discard wing tips / treat your pooch!). See this crispy baked wings recipe for how to cut wings yourself. Whole wings - you'll need 1.75kg/3.4lb, you'll lose weight with the discarded tips.
2. Marinade substitutions & notes:
- Sesame oil - use toasted (dark brown, not yellow oil). In Australia, toasted is the norm, untoasted is hard to find.
- Lemon juice can be substituted with rice vinegar - or any white / clear plain vinegar (not balsamic)
- Chinese Cooking Wine (Shaoxing Wine) best subs are Mirin (reduce sugar by half) or dry sherry. Next best - cooking sake, drinking sake or other rice wine. No alcoholic sub - chicken broth/stock.
- Soy sauce - use light or all purpose. Do not use dark soy sauce - it's far too intense!
- Hoisin Sauce can be substituted with oyster sauce but then you should add an extra 1/4 tsp of Chinese Five Spice Powder
- Oyster Sauce can be substituted with Hoisin Sauce but if you do so then do not add the 1/2 tsp of five spice powder.
- Chilli Garlic Sauce or Sambal Oelak - sub with any other Asian chilli sauce or paste, such as Chilli Bean Sauce or Sriracha.
- Garlic and ginger - fresh is best! But in an emergency, can sub with 1/2 tsp dried powder
- Five Spice Powder - a Chinese mix of five spices sold in everyday grocery stores!
3. Marinade time - it is best not to marinade for too long, 1 hour at most, because the salt in the marinade will draw too much moisture out of the wings (making them drier) and also the marinade will become watery making it harder to stick to the wings.
4. Leftovers keep well for 3 to 4 days. Reheat in microwave!
5.Nutrition assumes 8 servings made with 1.5kg/3lb of wings.
Serving: 207gCalories: 362cal (18%)Carbohydrates: 8g (3%)Protein: 50.2g (100%)Fat: 13.1g (20%)Saturated Fat: 3.6g (23%)Cholesterol: 152mg (51%)Sodium: 798mg (35%)Potassium: 491mg (14%)Sugar: 5.3g (6%)Vitamin A: 200IU (4%)Vitamin C: 6.6mg (8%)Calcium: 40mg (4%)Iron: 2.5mg (14%)
Keywords: baked wings, chicken wing marinade, chinese chicken wings, sticky chicken wings
Did you make this recipe?I love hearing how you went with my recipes! Tag me on Instagram at @RecipeTinEats.
Originally published June 2014, updated September 2019 with new photos, brand new video and most importantly, new Life of Dozer section added!
Life of Dozer
Oi! Back off dog!!!
If you are wondering how to get a dry rub to stick to the wings, the key is to drizzle the naked wings with a little vegetable oil before smothering them with the seasoning blend.What is sticky wings made of? ›
Although it is fairly easy to make, there are a number of things to take into account when it comes to cooking the wings. Wings are coated with a sweet and sticky glaze made from honey, soy sauce, and barbecue sauce. The glaze may also include sesame seeds.How long should you cook chicken wings for in the oven? ›
How long do you cook chicken wings? Chicken wings should be cooked until crispy and golden brown. This will take about 45 minutes in an oven at 400 degrees F. You will want to keep an eye on the wings to make sure the seasoning does not burn or blacken.Why do you soak wings in buttermilk? ›
Soaking chicken in a buttermilk brine results in more tender and more flavorful chicken! Why? The acidity in buttermilk breaks down the skin and the meat for a more tender texture and a crispier crust.Do I put sauce on wings before or after baking? ›
Most oven-baked chicken wings are tossed in sauce after they have been cooked, which means that the skin needs to be perfectly crisp to soak up all the sauce. Thoroughly pat the wings dry with paper towels before seasoning them with salt and placing them on a baking sheet.What temperature should I bake chicken wings at? ›
The best temperature to bake chicken wings is 400 degrees Fahrenheit. This will ensure that they are crispy and cooked through. You can also bake chicken wings at 350 or 375 degrees Fahrenheit, but they may not be as crispy.How do you get wing sauce to stick to Wings? ›
The key to getting the sauce to stick to your wings is the flour, Sidoti explains. Before you toss your chicken in hot sauce, be sure to coat them with enough flour or dry mixture. Make sure to dredge the entire wing before tossing it in your chosen sauce. This will help ensure an even distribution of sauce too.What is dunked wings sauce made of? ›
To make the sauce
Add chutney, oil, soy sauce and chilli Flakes. Stir and cook until thickens and the mixture reduces. Add some of the sauce to the fried chicken mix well to ensure an even coating.
Cook at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20-25 minutes for small wings, or 30-35 minutes for large wings. Chicken wings are done when they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit and the juices run clear. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce.Do you use cornstarch or baking powder for wings? ›
The short of it: Cornstarch works much better than baking powder for wings.
In a 450°F oven, chicken wings will bake in about 40-45 minutes. Although there's not much meat on the wing, you'll need to cook them long enough for the fat to render, or the skin won't crisp up.Should I soak chicken wings in milk? ›
If you are making fried wings (you should), you would ideally marinate the wings in buttermilk overnight. If you aren't a planner, you could just soak them in milk for a few hours before frying. Soak before you fry.What do you soak wings in? ›
A pretty common brine ratio for meat is 1 cup of salt into 1 gallon of water, or about 6.25% salt. Why salt? Salt helps to tenderize meat in two ways. First, soaking meat in a saltwater solution helps the meat to absorb water.What does buttermilk do for chicken? ›
What does marinating chicken in buttermilk do? Because of its slight acidity, buttermilk has the ability to tenderize the chicken, without it becoming tough and chewy. Using buttermilk also helps the chicken go nice and flaky when you dredge it through the dry mix.How do you make wing sauce stick to wings? ›
The key to getting the sauce to stick to your wings is the flour, Sidoti explains. Before you toss your chicken in hot sauce, be sure to coat them with enough flour or dry mixture. Make sure to dredge the entire wing before tossing it in your chosen sauce. This will help ensure an even distribution of sauce too.How do you get sauce to stick to chicken? ›
According to the recipe developer and cookbook author, once your sauce is made, you can add a bit of cornstarch to the mix. Not only will this help to thicken up your creation, but it also, in turn, will help it adhere to your chicken or whatever protein you might be using.How do you coat wings with sauce? ›
How to Make Buffalo Chicken Wing Sauce - YouTubeHow much baking powder do you put on wings? ›
Ingredients. 2 teaspoons baking powder Be sure to use aluminum free baking POWDER, not baking soda! Use 1 tsp of baking powder per pound of chicken.