It’s wing season! Okay, it’s technically football season but isn’t that the same thing? I’m pretty sure there’s a law requiring either wings or some sort of dip to be on the table during a football game.
I’m team Wings. Wings have plenty of crispy chicken skin to balance out the tender meat. Even all those haters* out there who peel the skin off chicken before eating it (BLASPHEMY) will still inhale their body weight in wings.
*side note – I married one of those blasphemous anti-chicken skin humans but it’s okay because I get to eat all the chicken skin he doesn’t.
Tequila Lime wings are my most favorite of all my favorite wings. I know that’s horrible grammar but I really do love all the different kinds of wings. It’s just that I especially adore these tequila lime wings. They have just the right combination of mouth pucker from the lime and bite from the lemon pepper.
For many many years I always had a bag or three of frozen tequila lime wings in my freezer for any wing emergency that might arise. I’m not going to lie to you and say I don’t still usually have a bag of frozen wings in my freezer for the true wing emergency (hey – they happen). But when I have the time and actually plan ahead homemade wings are my preference.
The best part of this wing recipe is that they are super crispy in spite of being baked. I tried several oven-fried wing recipes with mediocre results and had resigned myself to the fact that the best wings had to be deep fried. Then I read Serious Eats’ article on oven-fried Buffalo Wings. My life was changed! Granted, it takes a little bit of advance planning since you need to let the wings air dry in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours. But it is SO worth it!
So next time you’re planning the menu for football Saturday or Sunday (or heck, Monday and Thursday too – they play almost every day it seems) add chicken wings to your grocery list. I promise you won’t be sorry!
Oven-fried Tequila Lime Wings
- 2 pounds chicken wings
- 2 limes zested
- 3/4 cup lime juice
- 1/3 cup tequila
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup agave nectar
- 1/4 cup minced cilantro
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 jalapeno minced
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 2 Tbsp lemon pepper divided
- 1 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 2 tsp baking powder
- If the chicken wings are whole, trim the tips off and cut at the joint to separate the drummette from the wingette. For detailed instructions go to https://thecookful.com/how-to-cut-chicken-wings/
- In a large resealable bag combine the lime juice, lime zest, tequila, agave nectar and olive oil. Add the jalapeño, garlic, cilantro, chili powder, cumin and 1 tablespoon of the lemon pepper and mix well.
- Add the wing pieces to the marinade and seal well, squeezing out excess air. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours but up to 12 hours.
- Remove the wings from the marinade and pat dry. Place the wings in a large bowl. Add salt, baking powder and remaining 1 tablespoon lemon pepper. Toss well to coat the wings evenly.
- Place the wings on a rack over a foil lined baking sheet. Refrigerate for at least 8 hours but up to 24 hours. (Be sure and line the baking sheet with foil. You’ll thank me when you don’t have scrub burned bits off the pan later.)
- Preheat oven to 425°. Bake the wings for 20 minutes and turn. Bake an additional 15-25 minutes until crispy and cooked through. The wingettes may be done before for the drummettes so watch them carefully near the end to prevent burning.
- Serve immediately. If desired garnish with extra minced cilantro and serve with lime wedges.