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Plate of Sweet and Savory Korean Chicken Wings- Gluten Free with Oriental Buttermilk Ranch Cucumber Chips and Carrots

Amazing Sweet and Savory Korean Chicken Wings

These Amazing Sweet and Savory Korean Wings are a punt through the uprights! It’s football, I mean, chicken wing season!

Side view of Plate of Amazing Sweet and Savory Korean Chicken Wings- Gluten Free with Oriental Buttermilk Ranch Cucumber Chips and Carrots

Back on the Asian food kick, these Amazing Sweet and Savory Korean Wings one of my favorite snacks/appetizer/dinner, all dependent upon how they’re served.  With just a little spice, lots of bold flavors, these wings are a sweet umami treat.

Why Amazing Sweet and Savory Korean Chicken Wings?

Approximately one year ago, I hauled my wife, mother-in-law, and children to O’hare Airport with a final destination of Atlanta, Georgia.  I came back home, managed the movers, packed up the Uhaul, loaded the dog and a few plants, then hit the road!  Well, almost…  I had a quick and final detour to my inspiration for this recipe, Landbirds!

Landbirds was this little, hipster chicken shack in the Logan Square neighborhood of Chicago specializes in Korean Chicken Wings.  Their menu literally consisted of chicken wings, jasmine rice, Musubi rice (fried rice w/ spam and kimchi), and extra sauce.  In writing this, I found out that Landbirds closed, for all my Chicago friends, I guess there’s a good excuse to visit the ATL!

Korean wings, as you’ll see, are borderline addicting! The slight heat from the Korean Gochujang paste, along with the sweet and bright flavors from honey, brown sugar, and ginger make these guys burst with flavor. Complementing that are your earthy or umami tones from soy sauce/tamari and sesame.

Close up of Amazing Sweet and Savory Korean Chicken Wings- Gluten Free

No Way, These Are Gluten Free?

Unintentionally gluten free, these wings are delicious…  Fried light and crisp, they’re just as good with the sauce as without.  It’s amazing these little drumsticks haven’t gained more popularity.  Unlike their big ol’ ‘Merican brethern, the southern fried chicken, the Korean Chicken Wing uses rice flour and/or cornstarch over the typical wheat flour.  This rice flour/cornstarch leads to a more delicate crisp breading that is down right delicious.

Over the past few weeks developing this recipe, I’ve tried a different flours and starches and even without. Honestly, cornstarch is the way to go here. In one of my later renditions, I skipped the flours/starches and air fried the chicken wings with just canola and salt. After browning, I brushed on the sauce and air fried it for another few minutes. Albeit tasting delicious and a totally viable way of making these, the bit crispness from the cornstarch is most definitely the way to go.

Close up of Korean Chicken Wings- Gluten Free with Oriental Buttermilk Ranch

How should I serve these Delicious Korean Chicken Wings?

Serve these Amazing Sweet and Savory Korean Wings anyway you please!  I recently made a 6 pound batch for a neighborhood gathering, served it with a complimentary Oriental Ranch Dip (found below).  But my favorite way to eat these is with a bowl of sticky rice, extra wing sauce, and a side of kimchi!  Throw some edamame in the rice and you’re all set… The sweet and spicy slow burn just brightens my day.

Over head of Plate  Korean Chicken Wingswith Oriental Buttermilk Ranch Cucumber Chips and Carrots

It’s All in the Details

My Amazing Sweet And Savory Korean Wings recipe is based off of a 2.5lb bag of buffalo sized wings. An average bag has approximately 20-25 wings/drumlets. The average person will have 4-5 wings as an appetizer. Erring on the side on a more conservative estimate, a 2.5lb bag should feed approximately 4-5 guests. If it’s a bunch of dudes watching football, double it.

Tips and Tricks

  • Best air fried or deep fried, but these Sweet and Savory Korean Wings can also be baked.  For obvious reasons, I avoid deep frying anything myself unless its done on a burner outside…  Baking is great for bulk, but it does require high heat, and multiple rotations…  If you’re making a smaller batch, I recommend airfrying.
  • If you like Korean BBQ, I would highly recommend checking out Cafe Sucre Farine’s Steve’s Grilled Asian Steak.  It’s my aunt’s adaptation to my Bulgogi recipe and it’s fantastic!
  • Don’t double dip! I know you want to, I get it…
  • Gochujang is a thick Korean fermented chili paste made with glutinous (sticky) rice flour, fermented soy beans, and usually a little sugar. If you don’t have this, feel free to substitute it with a chili sauce such as Sambal Oelek.
  • If you’re in a time crunch, skip the milk brine. While the milk brine does make the chicken juicier and is highly recommended, it can be skipped.

You Might Also Enjoy…

If you like these Sweet and Savory Korean Wings, I would also recommend our Fresh and Vibrant Vietnamese Lemongrass Braised Pork!

Or for another crowd pleasing appetizer, check out the Fully Loaded Cheesy Poblano Chorizo Fundido!

Amazing Sweet and Savory Korean Chicken Wings

5 from 7 votes
Course: Appetizers, Entree, DinnerCuisine: Korean
Servings

5

servings
Prep time

45

minutes
Cooking time

25

minutes

Easy air fried Amazing Sweet and Savory Korean Chicken Wings are less complicated than you think.

Cook Mode

Keep the screen of your device on

Ingredients

  • The Wings
  • 2-1/2 Chicken Wings

  • 3/4 Cup Cornstarch

  • 2 tsp Himalayan Pink Salt

  • 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper

  • 1/4 Cup Green Onions- finely chopped

  • Brine
  • 2 Cups Milk (2% or Whole)

  • 2 tsp Fresh Ginger Grated

  • 1 tsp Himalayan Pink Salt

  • 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper

  • 2 Tbsp Granulated White Sugar

  • 1/2 tsp Chinese Five Spice

  • 1/3 Cup Rice Vinegar

  • Korean Chicken Wing Sauce
  • 2-1/2 Fresh Grated Ginger

  • 1/4 Cup Honey

  • 2 Tbsp Sesame Oil

  • 2-1/2 Tbsp Chili Paste (aka Gochujang)

  • 2 Tbsp Tamari (or GF Soy Sauce)

  • 1 Tbsp Mirin

  • 1 tsp Himalayan Pink Salt

  • 2 Tbsp Dark Brown Sugar

  • 1 Tbsp Sesame Seeds (Black or White)

  • Asian Buttermilk Ranch
  • 3/4 Cup Buttermilk

  • 3/4 Cup Sour Cream

  • 3/4 Cup Mayonnaise

  • 1 Tbsp Lemon Juice

  • 1 tsp Himalayan Pink Salt

  • 1-1/2 Ground Coriander

  • 1/4 tsp Chinese Five Spice

  • 1/2 tsp Onion Powder

  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder

  • 1 Tbsp Black Pepper Coarsely Ground

  • 1 Tbsp Parsley Finely Chopped

  • 2 Tbsp Cilantro Finely Chopped

  • 1 tsp Granulated White Sugar

Directions

  • Brine
  • Combine all ingredients, except the chicken wings.
  • Mix thoroughly before adding the chicken.
  • Once the wings have been added, cover and refrigerator for minimally 30 minutes.
  • The Wings
  • After removing the wings from the brine, pat dry with a paper towel.
  • Brush or spray each wing lightly with Canola Oil.
  • Using a mesh strainer, lightly coat each wing with the cornstarch, salt, and pepper mixture.
  • Place the coated wings on a parchment lined sheet and either air fry for 15 minutes at 400°F, then flip for another 5 minutes. (I generally do not preheat my air fryer, see notes if using an oven)
  • To get them really crispy, let the wings cool, spray with oil again, and air fry a second time at 400°F for an additional 5 minutes.
  • While the wings are cooking, mix together the sauce.
  • Using a large mixing bowl, toss the wings with the sauce /green onions and serve!
  • Korean Chicken Wing Sauce
  • Combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly.
  • Asian Buttermilk Ranch
  • Combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Notes

  • If you’re using an oven, preheat your oven to 425°F and place the chicken wings on wire rack or parchment. Cook for 25 minutes, then flip and cook for an additional 25 minutes until the wings start to crisp. Once crisp, toss in your sauce and green onions, and serve!

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5 Comments

  1. Chitown

  2. Excellent

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