Instant Pot Chicken Wings

Chicken wings prepared in the Instant Pot are a great weeknight dinner. Cooking them in the Instant Pot takes just a few minutes, the meat remains really juicy and plump and crisping them up in the oven at the end gives them a golden and crunchy exterior.

Chicken wings are great as an appetizer, of course, but I really like serving them for dinner too. They are so easy to prepare, are super versatile, so you can smother them in lots of different sauces or keep them crisp and flavorful by leaving the sauce out.

Cooking them in the Instant Pot is one of my favorite methods because they only take 5 minutes to cook through and then just 15 minutes to crisp up in the oven. You’ll have dinner on the table in about half an hour. They are really moist and tender on the inside, crunchy and saucy on the outside.

Instant Pot Chicken Wings Video

Why Does An Instant Pot Work So Well For Chicken Wings?

Chicken wings have a decent amount of fat on the skin, which makes the chicken wings really flabby and soggy if you bake them. You can get them more crisp, but it takes a lot more time in the oven.

Frying the chicken wings takes care of that and makes the wings super crisp and crunchy. Using an Instant Pot cooks the chicken wings in record time – after it comes to pressure, only 5 minutes and they are cooked through. The chicken wings are also essentially “steaming” while they are pressure cooking, since they are not submerged in the cooking liquid and this method helps to render off a lot of that excess fat which drips down through the steaming basket and into the liquid below.

Lastly, putting the chicken in a hot oven to crisp up for another 15 minutes will give you a nice golden and crunchy exterior too.

Ingredients:

Ingredients for Instant Pot Chicken Wings
  • chicken wings – I recommend using whole chicken wings and cutting them up into chicken wingette and drumettes yourself. They are much juicier and plumper. You can also use pre-cut chicken wings, either fresh or frozen.
  • salt, pepper, herbs and spices – use any combination of seasonings that you like. I used paprika, onion powder, garlic powder and a variety of dry herbs – chives, parsley, rosemary, thyme, oregano, granulated onion, etc. You can also add some cayenne pepper if you want to give it some extra heat, chili powder, chili lime seasoning, lemon pepper, Italian seasoning, etc. are also great options.
  • water – anytime you prepare anything in the Instant Pot, you need to use at least 1 cup of liquid otherwise it won’t come to pressure.
  • barbecue sauce – use any barbecue sauce that you like, either store-bought or homemade. I have a delicious Homemade Barbecue Sauce recipe that you can try.
  • oil – for the baking sheet. Instead of using barbecue sauce on the wings, you can skip it and brush the wings with oil, such as olive oil, avocado oil, grapeseed oil. The oil will help to crisp up the wings faster, but will give them a clean and neutral flavor.

How to Cut Up Chicken Wings

My favorite tool to use for this job is a pair or kitchen scissors/shears. It’s so much easier than using a knife, but a good sharp knife will work too. Using your fingers, locate the joint where the bones come together between the midsection and the drumette and cut across. Find the other joint in between the midsection and the wingtip and cut there too.

You will have 3 sections, the wingette, drumette and the wingtip. I don’t use the wingtips for tis recipe, since there isn’t any meat there, but they are excellent to use in Homemade Chicken Broth. Save in your freezer. I even have a recipe for Instant Pot Chicken Broth.

How to cut chicken wings

How To Make Instant Pot Chicken Wings

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper.
  2. Season the chicken wings with salt, pepper, spices and herbs.
  3. Pour in 1 cup of water to the Instant Pot and place a trivet or steaming basket inside the Instant Pot. Add the chicken wings. They will be on top of each other and that is totally ok.
  4. Cook the wings on High Pressure for 5 minutes. Release the pressure.
  5. Transfer the wings to the prepared baking sheet and brush them with barbecue sauce.
  6. Roast in the preheated oven for 5-15 minutes, until the wings are as crisp as you want them.
Instant Pot Chicken Wings tutorial

Helpful Tips and Substitutions

  • Instead of water, you can use chicken broth when cooking the wings in the Instant Pot.
  • For even crispier chicken wings, place the cooked chicken wings on top of a wire rack on the baking sheet. The hot air will circulate around the chicken wings all around and will be even more crunchy.
  • Use the convection setting on your oven, if you have it. This will give you crispier wings too.
  • Omit the barbecue sauce and brush the wings with oil, mayonnaise or Greek yogurt. This will keep the wings are neutral chicken flavor and will give it a crisp coating.
  • Buffalo Wings – melt butter with hot sauce and some minced garlic. Toss the wings in the Buffalo Sauce after they are crisp and golden out of the oven.
  • Use different sauces to brush on the wings instead of the Barbecue Sauce, such as teriyaki sauce, sweet and sour, etc.
  • Prep Ahead – Cook the chicken wings in the Instant Pot and then store in the refrigerator up to a day in advance. Continue cooking in the oven when you’re ready to serve them.

How to Reheat Chicken Wings

Chicken wings reheat really well. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, then place the chicken wings on a baking sheet and heat for about 10 minutes, or until they are heated all the way through. They are great as leftovers and will still be crisp when you reheat in the oven.

What to Serve With Chicken Wings:

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Instant Pot Chicken Wings

Chicken wings prepared in the Instant Pot are a great weeknight dinner. Cooking them in the Instant Pot takes just a few minutes, the meat remains really juicy and plump and crisping them up in the oven at the end gives them a golden and crunchy exterior.

  • Author: Olga’s Flavor Factory
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x

Ingredients

Scale

3 lbs chicken wings

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/41/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon paprika

1/21 teaspoon, each, garlic powder and onion powder

1/2 Tablespoon dry herbs, such as chives, rosemary, thyme, parsley, basil, oregano, etc.

1 cup water or chicken broth

1/2 cup barbecue sauce

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper.
  2. Season the chicken wings with the salt, pepper, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, dry herbs and any other combination of spices and seasonings that you like. Mix to combine.
  3. Place a steaming basket inside the inner chamber of the Instant Pot. You can use the steaming rack that comes with the Instant Pot, but a steaming basket is a lot more convenient. Pour in 1 cup of water.
  4. Place the chicken wings  inside the steaming basket. Close the lid, making sure the sealing ring is inside the lid, set the valve to “Sealing”. Cook the chicken wings on Manual/Pressure Level mode, High Pressure for 5 minutes. Quick Release or Manually release the pressure.
  5. Transfer the cooked chicken wings to the prepared baking sheet, placing the chicken wings in one layer, leaving room around them. Brush generously with barbecue sauce or any sauce of your choice.
  6. Roast the chicken wings in the preheated oven for 5-15 minutes, depending on your oven and the size of your chicken wings. Keep an eye on them and take them out when they are as crisp as you like.
  7. Serve the chicken wings right away, with additional barbecue sauce. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat in the preheated 400 degrees Fahrenheit oven for about 10 minutes, or until heated through.

Keywords: chicken wings, instant pot chicken wings, how to make barbecue chicken wings, baked chicken wings, barbecue chicken wings, chicken wing appetizer

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