Chicken wings are one of my favorite appetizers.
But the truth is, I used to think they were gross. One of the worst appetizers ever.
Well, more like I felt that way about the idea of them. The thought of trying to gnaw meat off a bone never really appealed to me, until one day when an ex-boyfriend pressured me into trying them.
This is one case of peer pressure that I am glad I experienced.
I was in college, newly 21 years old, and was just discovering the joys of a pool hall. Of course, nothing goes better with a game of pool than meaty finger food and beer, am I right?
Especially when you are watching whatever game is currently going on in the background (football, basketball, baseball, it all works). They are a game day favorite.
So I gingerly picked up the messiest one and took a tentative bite…
It was crispy on the outside, but the inside was so tender and juicy. The spicy sauce, mixed with a hit of cooling ranch, left lingering heat on my tongue without totally burning out my taste buds.
And from that moment on, I became a wing girl.
Today, my husband and I love going out for a few platefuls of apps, but sometimes there’s nothing better than homemade. This particular homemade version, prepared in the electric pressure cooker, is the pure perfection you are looking for.
Not only are they full of flavor, they are also so tender. With a final turn under the broiler, they come out nice and crispy, just like the ones you’d get at your favorite local restaurant or bar joint.
We have been using our electric pressure cooker as often as possible for a quick and easy way to prep poultry. If you’re intrigued by these wings, you’ll need to read our article on cooking bone-in chicken breast, as well as boneless, skinless chicken breast!
These little wings and drumsticks have become a major staple in our home, and my husband asks me to make them all the time.
You can even make this recipe from frozen poultry, so there’s no thawing time required if you happen to forget to take them out of the freezer to defrost ahead of time.
What’s the best part about this recipe? Besides the easy cooking process and how quick they are to prepare, you can also use whatever type of sauce you want to flavor these.
The instructions below outline how to make your own Buffalo sauce, but you can easily substitute that for one of the following ideas:
- Grab your favorite barbecue sauce – any flavor or style is delicious with this recipe.
- Use Sriracha and add 1/2 teaspoon lime zest and 1/2 teaspoon chopped cilantro
- Use green jalapeno hot sauce instead of the traditional red hot sauce
- Use Korean gochujang instead of your favorite red option
- Make a miso dipping condiment with 1/4 cup white miso, 1/4 cup soy sauce, 2 tablespoons lime juice, 2 teaspoons fish sauce, and 1 teaspoon grated ginger
- Make a garlic butter sauce with 1/2 cup unsalted butter, 3 cloves of minced garlic, 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley, 1 tablespoon grated parmesan, and 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
No matter what type I use, I love to serve this chicken with carrot sticks and pieces of celery on the side. I don’t know if this is because I’ve been conditioned to enjoy them Buffalo-style or what…
There’s just so much satisfaction in biting into a fresh, crunchy vegetable dipped in ranch or blue cheese dressing in between chowing down on this meaty appetizer.
How to Cook Chicken Wings in the Electric Pressure Cooker
Ready to start cooking? Let’s go!
Step 1 – Measure Ingredients
First, you want to gather and measure everything you need to make the recipe.
I use the following ingredients to make 4 pounds of meat with a Buffalo-style condiment, and you can use the following proportions as a guideline to prepare your favorite recipe or style.
- 4 pounds chicken wings (fresh or frozen)
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup hot sauce
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
Next, line a large rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil, and set it aside.
Did you buy whole wings by mistake, and you want to split them up into wingettes and drumettes? Read our helpful guide to learn how to break them down!
Step 2 – Season the Meat
Add the meat, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and pepper to a large bowl, or whatever combination of herbs and spices you prefer to coat your poultry with, aiming for about 2 teaspoons of spice mixture total.
Toss to coat well.
Step 3 – Pressure Cook
Add 3/4 cup of water to the bottom of your electric pressure cooker. Place a trivet that is fitted for your appliance inside the insert.
Arrange the seasoned meat pieces on top of the trivet. Seal the lid.
Set to Manual and cook on high pressure for 10 minutes for fresh wings, or 15 minutes for frozen.
Carefully quick release the pressure.
Step 4 – Make Sauce
While the meat is cooking, you can make your sauce.
I like to make a simple Buffalo-style condiment by whisking together my favorite hot sauce and an equal amount of melted butter in a bowl, but feel free to prepare whatever your favorite variety is, aiming for about 1 cup total.
Set the bowl aside.
Step 5 – Broil
Preheat your broiler to High.
Transfer the cooked meat to a large, clean bowl. Toss with about half of the Buffalo-style condiment.
Spread the pieces on the baking sheet in an even layer.
Broil until crispy, for about 2 to 3 minutes per side, then flip and broil on the other side.
Return the pieces to the bowl and toss with the remaining sauce. Serve immediately, with ranch or blue cheese dip and sliced vegetables, if you like.
Tips and Tricks to Make These Wings Perfect
There are a few tips that I’d like to reiterate that are so important for when you are making this pressure cooker chicken recipe.
First, make sure you use a trivet with handles or a steam basket. You don’t want the meat to touch the water, and this also helps make it easy to remove them from the insert when they are finished cooking.
Be very careful when you pull out the meat. They will be soft and juicy, and very hot. Remove them carefully from the insert with soft silicone-coated tongs or a spoon, and be gentle to avoid knocking any meat off the bone or inadvertently causing the skin to come off.
Be sure to broil these before serving to get that deliciously crispy skin that we all know and love.
This is the key to producing a fantastic chicken wing using this method, and the pressure cooker just can’t get them crispy on its own, with all that hot steam that it’s so good at producing. It’s such a simple step and it makes all the difference in the world – so don’t skip it!
Want even more inspiration to make tasty wings at home? Check out the following recipes from Foodal next:
What’s your favorite type of sauce to put on your favorite meaty finger food to serve on game day or for holiday parties? Tell us in the comments below!
Photos by Meghan Yager, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. With additional writing and editing by Allison Sidhu.
Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Meghan Yager
Meghan Yager is a food addict turned food and travel writer with a love for creating uncomplicated, gourmet recipes and devouring anything the world serves up. As the author of the food and travel blog Cake 'n Knife, Meghan focuses on unique foodie experiences from around the world to right at home in your own kitchen.