Make extra-crispy, just-spicy-enough Orange Chicken Wings with a homemade orange sauce that has a delicious hot sauce-honey flavor and a nicely juicy center. The perfect appetizer or main meat that can be served with your favorite sides.
Can I be honest, ya'll? These spicy orange chicken wings are my latest obsession and I'm truly loving the citrus twist that comes with these savory bites. It’s never a bad time to add some tasty appetizers to your repertoire and these wings are it!
Although these wings make for the perfect handheld appetizer, I also love making these wings during the week along with my favorites like brown rice, mashed potatoes, mac + cheese, pasta, or even a nice salad. They're just perfect with anything and I know that I might be biased because of my absolute LOVE for chicken wings as a whole. Haha.
How to Make the Crispiest Spicy Orange Chicken Wings
The best part about any wings is the crispy coating that is formed without an "actual coating". And these wings do not disappoint. I talk more about tips to making these wings nice and crispy, but let's talk about this delicious sauce. You'll need:
Filtered water. This gives the sauce additional liquid.
Unsalted butter. This adds additional flavor.
Brown sugar. This adds a nice glaze-like texture to the sauce.
Freshly-squeezed orange juice. I love using actual oranges, but you can substitute with store-bought orange juice if needed.
Honey. For an alternate option, you can use agave or maple syrup.
Garlic. Fresh minced or grated garlic also works.
Arrowroot starch. Works as a thickener for the sauce.
Redpepper flakes + hot sauce. Use as much or as little spice as you like.
Orange peels. For a nice burst of orange flavor. You can also use orange zest, if preferred.
What to Serve with Spicy Orange Chicken Wings
These orange wings are full of flavor all on their own. But who doesn’t love to dunk and dip?
Serve your wings with any (or all) of these tasty condiments:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper and then add a wire rack atop. NOTE: Doing this step is a MUST to prevent sticking and ensures that the wings crisp up evenly. OPTION 2: Prepare a 12-inch oven-safe iron cast skillet and grease with butter.
Rinse your chicken wings and pat dry well to remove as much excess liquid as possible. Once dry, add seasonings and rub everything together with your hands until wings are well coated.
Line each wing atop prepared wire rack on baking sheet side by side, about 1 inch apart.
Bake wings for about 20-25 minutes or until crisp and cooked through before adding the sauce.
TO MAKE THE SAUCE:
In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the butter, garlic cloves, orange juice, honey, brown sugar, red pepper flakes, ginger, hot sauce, water, and orange peels and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes, until bubbly stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat to low and add the arrowroot mixture (mix both together until "milky" looking) stirring until the sauce begins to thicken. Remove from heat.
Once the wings have become crispy, spoon the sauce atop wings and let them bake for another 5-6 minutes or until the sauce is "sticky" atop wings.
Remove the chicken wings from the oven and serve immediately with your favorite side.
Tips & Tricks
STORAGE: Best if consumed within the same day. Store leftovers in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Reheat in oven when ready to serve.
SWEETENER: You can always substitute honey with Agave or maple syrup if desired.
THICKENER: You can always use cornstarch or flour instead of arrowroot starch. Always be sure to stir your thickener in water before adding to sauce to avoid lumps.