Dry brining chicken wings = crispy goodness

I had a hankering for some chicken wings for Origin night and they turned out really well, so I thought I’d share the recipe!

I’ve used a wet brine (50/50 mix of sugar and salt dissolved in water) many times for whole butterflied chicken and swear by it when smoking chicken to keep in the moisture. However I’ve never brined wings before as it I’m usually not that prepared. Instead of a wet-brine, I thought I’d give dry brining a go as it’s way less messy and requires less time.

If you don’t know already, brining (both dry and wet) is the process of using salt or a salty solution to modify the moisture levels of the skin and/or flesh of the meat. A wet brine draws moisture into the meat, resulting in really juicy chicken after cooking, and prevents it drying out which can easily happen if you accidentally overcook it. For a dry brine, salt rubbed over the skin of the chicken will draw moisture out of the skin and dissolve on the surface. The result is really crispy skin after cooking.

For these wings I wanted to try dry brining as I haven’t been particularly happy with the skin of chicken
I’ve cooked in the oven (rather than the Kettle BBQ). About 4 hours before cooking, I prepped the chicken wings by cutting the drumstick and flat into separate pieces and cutting off the wing tip. I then put a moderate coat of ground rock salt over the surface of the wings by tossing them in a bowl and salting a few times. I tried not to overdo it as I knew the seasoning mixture I was planning on using also contained salt. In total there was about half to one tablespoon of salt for 2 kg of wings. I then put the wings on a wire rack in the fridge to sit, which also helps to dry them out.

Before cooking I let them sit out of the fridge to warm up close to room temp (which helps them cook evenly). The rubs I used are from the Brissy based blokes at Barbecue Mafia La Familia and The Enforcer. Here’s a link to their web store.



I let them sit for 10 mins after applying the rub (I read somewhere to do this). I then cooked the wings for 40mins total at 190C, turning once after 20 minutes. I poured off some liquid when I turned them to stop it pooling in the pan too much.

After cooking - sorry for the shitty quality after cook photo, the game was on and I was distracted!

I was happy with these, super crispy and juicy on the inside. Even got the tick of approval from the Mrs!

And that’s it! Super simple and tasty snack. Anyone got any of their own tips or recipes?

1 Like