Making air fryer frozen chicken wings is my newest easy-meal obsession. Taking frozen wings out of the freezer and straight into my air fryer is just so simple and fast!
Making wings in the air fryer straight from frozen is just one extra step and you don’t need to defrost the wings before air frying! The air fryer is perfect for cooking 1 lb or less of chicken wings. If making a big batch, try cooking the chicken wings in an oven instead otherwise you’ll need to cook the wings in batches. Try my Baked Chicken wings in oven for larger amounts of wings.
Air Fryer Chicken Wing Ingredients
To cook frozen chicken wings in the air fryer you only need two ingredients: Wings and cooking oil.
- Chicken Wings: Use either bone-in or boneless wings. Uncooked store bought seasoned wings or plain chicken wings all work and Costco, Tyson, Foster Farms, Perdue or your favorite frozen chicken wing brand can be used.
- Cooking Oil (Olive, Avocado or Cooking Spray): You could get by without the oil but it does help get that crispy texture that makes air fryer wings so irresistible. You can also substitute oil for aluminum free baking powder and still get super crispy wings. Trust me on this!
Wing Sauces and Flavors
The sauce and wing flavor is up to you but we’ve added a few ideas and suggestions below. You can use your favorite brand of sauce, seasoning or dry rub or make one from scratch!
How to Make Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Wings
(Scroll down to the bottom for the printable recipe card with exact measurements and recipe instructions.)
- Defrost in Air Fryer: Set the air fryer to 400°F and cook the frozen block of wings for 6 minutes or until defrosted and enough to separate.
- Toss With Seasonings: Toss the wings with just enough oil to coat and place back into the air fryer basket. If you’re making “naked” wings, season them with salt after coating them with oil (black pepper works too but that’s optional). Seasoning your chicken is almost always a good idea but keep in mind that if you’re adding seasoning later, you might want to skip it depending on the salt content of the seasoning mix you’re using.
- Cook: Cook for an additional 12 minutes, then flip and cook for another 5 minutes. Air fryer brands cook differently so keep an eye on the chicken wings as it cooks and adjust time accordingly until they reach 165°F.
Dry Rub Seasoning and Dipping Sauces
This Chicken Wings recipe is a great base that goes with any type of seasoning mix or your favorite sauce. Here are some flavor ideas so you can enjoy something different every time!
Dry Rub Seasoning
- Lemon Pepper
- Cajun, sweet chili or garlic chili
- Dry ranch dressing
- Garlic Parmesan (mix a little garlic powder with grated parmesan)
- Honey and hot sauce (technically this is a wet coating but it’s mixed with melted butter)
- Jerk seasoning
- Dried chipotle powder then drizzle with maple syrup
- Garlic powder and/or onion powder
If you’re adding a flavor after they’re cooked then you’ll want to baste the wings with a melted butter and seasoning mixture.
All you do is mix together the melted butter and seasonings then brush it onto the cooked wings once they’re fully cooked.
Chicken Wing Sauces
- Buffalo sauce (try this keto buffalo sauce or this simple buffalo sauce recipe)
- Honey and Balsamic
- Buttermilk Ranch Dressing
- Korean wing sauce
- BBQ sauce
- Warmed cherry jam with adobo sauce (from a can of chipotle peppers)
- Curry sauce
- Straight hot sauce (such as Sriracha) for the bold spice lovers
- Whatever your favorite wing sauce is – the sky’s the limit!
Simply baste the wings in the sauce after cooking or dip the wings in a sauce!
Tips for the BEST Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Wings
- This same method works for fresh wings, too! Skip the first step for defrosting; the remaining recipe steps will work just fine. Keep an eye on cook time though!
- If your wings are coated with a lot of ice, be sure to drain any melted water from the bottom of your air fryer as they cook. Simply check for any melted ice and drain it off whenever you’re checking/flipping the wings.
- Because different brands – and even different models – of air fryers cook slightly differently, keep a close eye on your wings the first time you make them. They might take a little longer or even less time depending on the air fryer model you use and even just the size of your wings.
- Use just enough oil to lightly coat the wings – they don’t need much to help them get super crispy.
- Make sure the wings are in one layer and, if possible, a little space around each one for air to circulate. Overcrowding may result in unevenly cooked wings.
- Make sure your wings have reached an internal temperature of 165°F.
- Did you know if you prefer your wings with no sauce on them you can order dry or “naked” wings at a restaurant? It’s a great hack if you prefer dipping dry wings in a sauce or have kids who don’t like flavored wings.
Here are even more air fryer tips.
How to Store & Reheat Leftover Chicken Wings
Store leftover chicken wings in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
To reheat the chicken wings set the air fryer 165°F and fry the wing for 5 to 6 minutes until they’re reheated through. For best results flip the wings halfway through and make sure internal temperature is 165°F before serving.
- 1 lb frozen chicken wings
- Cooking oil, such as olive or avocado oil (cooking spray will also work)
- 1-2 tbsp melted butter
- 2-3 tsp of your favorite seasoning mixture OR enough buffalo sauce, etc. to coat the wings (see the post for ideas)
- Preheat Air Fryer to 400°F
- Place the frozen block of wings in the air fryer basket and set the timer for 6 minutes. Check the wings to see if they're defrosted enough to separate; if not, air fry them for another minute until you can pull them apart.
- Toss the wings with just enough oil to coat. If you're making "naked" wings, season them with salt after coating them with oil (black pepper works too but that's optional). Seasoning your chicken is almost always a good idea but keep in mind that if you're adding seasoning later, you might want to skip it depending on the salt content of the seasoning mix you're using.
- Put them in one layer in the air fryer basket and air fry them for another 12 minutes, flipping them over halfway through the cooking time. Flip the wings one more time and cook for about another 5 minutes or so, or until they're cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F and as crispy as you like them!
- Seasoning (Optional): Mix together the melted butter and your favorite seasoning mixture. Place the wings on a serving plate and baste each wing with some of the mixture or with your chosen sauce. Serve immediately.
Air fryer brands cook differently so keep an eye on the chicken wings as it cooks and adjust time accordingly.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 511Total Fat: 42gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 24gCholesterol: 114mgSodium: 2835mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 21g
This data was provided and calculated by Nutritionix.