Dry Rub Chicken Wings

Whether you like your wings dry or wet, this Dry Rub Chicken Wings recipe is a good starting point. With tons of flavour, this rub may become your go-to rub for all your chicken wings.

dry rub chicken wings

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Serving Dry Rub Chicken Wings

Chicken wings are a favourite of our family, especially in the fall when football season starts. They are easy to make and quick. If the rub is applied before a game, I can usually cook up a batch on the BBQ or in the air fryer during halftime.

These wings are also great for serving when my teenagers invite their friends over after school. They make a great snack that I serve with a side of sour cream and cut-up carrots, celery, and peppers.

Simple Ingredients

There are 10 ingredients in the rub, all of which you probably already have on hand. Here are a few of the ones I use along with substitutions.

Smoked Paprika– This is one of the main ingredients in the rub. If you don’t have smoked paprika, regular or Hungarian paprika can be substituted. I especially like smoked paprika if I am cooking these indoors.

Cayenne Pepper– This is one ingredient that can be adjusted to taste. A little goes a long way with this spice, but more can be added if you prefer a hotter result.

Granulated Garlic– I prefer this type of garlic in all my recipes, although garlic powder also works. When using garlic powder, add only half the amount as garlic powder is finer and stronger. Garlic salt is basically salt with a little garlic added to it and will make this recipe too salty, but if that is all you have you can use it and adjust the salt you add.

Granulated Onion– Just like with garlic, you can use onion powder. We do prefer to use granulated onion in all our recipes. Again use half the amount of onion powder because it is stronger. The use of onion salt will mean you may have to adjust the salt in the recipe.

Brown Sugar– This is where you get a little sweetness, plus the brown sugar helps the wings to crisp. But you want to be careful not to add too much sugar or your wings may burn before they are cooked through. When it comes to brown sugar, I use whatever I grab first from the shelf, so you can use yellow or golden, or dark brown sugar.

Rounding out the recipe ingredients is chili powder, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper.

Ways to Cook Chicken Wings

There are numerous ways to cook these chicken wings. Our favourite is on the BBQ, charcoal, or gas. Mike prefers to barbecue wings on the Weber Kettle grill. I prefer to cook them on my gas grill. Either way, they taste great.

I have also made used this recipe in my air fryer. The rub not only adds flavour but also gets crispy when air fried.

Oven-baked is another way to cook these wings, although it is not my favourite way to make them. When baking in the oven, it is best to place the wings on a rack so the grease drains off them while cooking. I have found that if you don’t use a rack, the wings cook in grease, and a lot of the flavour is left behind on the baking tray.

Leftover Wings

If you have any leftover chicken wings, make sure to store them in the fridge in an airtight container. They can be reheated in the microwave for a few minutes, or in a 350°F oven for 10 minutes.

I have also had success freezing wings for use within 3 months. I place cooled wings on a baking sheet in a single layer and freeze for 2 hours. Then transfer the frozen wings to a freezer bag or freezer-safe container. To reheat frozen wings, place in a single layer on a baking sheet and cook for 15-20 at 350°F or until heated through.

dry rub chicken wings

Dry Rub Chicken Wings

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Resting time 5 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Servings 2 servings


  • 1 Tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 Tbsp granulated garlic
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 2 pounds split chicken wings


  • Preheat BBQ to medium-high.
  • Whisk together all spices, herbs and brown sugar together in a small bowl.
  • Place chicken wings in a large bowl.
  • Sprinkle rub over chicken wings and toss to coat.
  • Cook chicken wings on preheated BBQ for 8 minutes
  • Turn wings over and cook additional 5 to 7 minutes.
  • Transfer wings to serving dish and allow to rest 3-5 minutes before serving.
Keyword Chicken Wings


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