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