Crispy Cornstarch Chicken Wings

These Crispy Cornstarch Chicken Wings are crunchy on the outside, and tender and juicy on the inside, just the wway I like it. And I’m willing to bet your family and friends will too! The best part: it requires just 2 ingredients!


After countless YouTube recipe videos, kitchen experiments, and taste tests, I can confidently say I’ve discovered the simple secret to achieving chicken wings with serious crunch: cornstarch.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Here’s why this recipe is about to become your new kitchen favorite:

Unbeatable crispiness: The cornstarch and twice-fried method makes this the lightest, crispiest chicken you’ll ever have!

Easy and effortless: With just 2 to 3 ingredients and a straightforward process, you’ll be amazed at how these restaurant-worthy chicken wings turn out.

Customizable flavor options: While the crispy exterior is definitely the star of this wings recipe, the flavor choices are endless. They pair well with anything from a bold and spicy kick to a more subtle, herb-infused taste.

crispy chicken wings and homemade chili sauce


More Chicken Recipes To Try

Easy Marry Me Chicken
Baked BBQ Chicken
Easy Poppy Seed Chicken
Hui Hui Chicken
Chicken Marsala (No Wine)
Best Ground Chicken Recipe
Crispy Baked Chicken Wings

Ingredient Notes

Chicken wings: This recipe works best with skin-on wings, but that’s just my preference. You could try skinless chicken pieces, but some of the crunch will be lost, since the skin itself crisps up during the cooking process too, adding to the already crisp texture.

Cornstarch: Just a light coating is all you need to get a light golden color and an unbelievably delicate crunchy bite. You won’t get teeth-shattering super crunch with cornstarch, but you will be able to hear it when you take a bite.

Salt (optional): I recommend seasoning the chicken with salt prior to coating it in cornstarch, or adding a generous pinch of salt to the cornstarch and then dusting the chicken in the dry seasoned mixture.

raw chicken wings on a white plate


Recipe Tips and Tricks

Drying is key: Before even thinking about cornstarch or oil, ensure your chicken wings are completely dry. Moisture on the surface can hinder crispiness. Pat them down with paper towels, allowing the cornstarch to adhere better and create that desirable crunch.

Gentle coating: When tossing your wings in the cornstarch mixture, be gentle. A light, even coating is what you’re aiming for. Shake off any excess cornstarch before cooking.

Proper oil temperature: If you’re frying, maintain a steady oil temperature. Too hot, and the outside will burn before the inside cooks; too cool, and you’ll end up with greasy wings. Use a thermometer to keep things precise.

The double-frying method: Whether frying, baking, or air frying, the two-stage cooking method is your ticket to perfect crispiness. The initial cook ensures the wings are fully cooked, while the second round crisps up the exterior.

Avoid overcrowding: When frying or air frying, don’t overcrowd the cooking space. Give your wings room to breathe, allowing the hot air or oil to circulate evenly.

Sauces post-cooking: If you’re saucing your wings, do so after cooking. Applying sauces before cooking can interfere with the crispiness.

Air fryer preheating: Preheat your air fryer before cooking the wings. This ensures they start cooking immediately and helps maintain the desired texture.

Test and adjust: Everyone’s equipment and preferences differ, so don’t hesitate to tweak cooking times, temperatures, or techniques based on how your wings turn out. The more you cook this recipe, the more you’ll refine your approach.

Safety first: When working with hot oil, whether frying or air frying, exercise caution. Use tongs or a slotted spoon, and avoid splattering.

cornstarch chicken wings served with dipping sauces on a bed of lettuce


How to make Crispy Cornstarch Chicken Wings: Step-by-step

Step 1: Prepare the Chicken Wings
Pat the chicken wings dry using paper towels. Ensure they are completely dry to achieve optimal crispiness. If desired, sprinkle salt over the wings for seasoning.

Step 2: Coat the Wings with Cornstarch
In a bowl, combine the cornstarch and optional salt. Toss the dry chicken wings in the cornstarch mixture, ensuring an even and light coating.

Step 3: Cooking Method Options

Twice Fried Chicken Wings

For the First Fry:

  1. In a large pot or deep fryer, heat vegetable oil to 325°F (165°C).
  2. Carefully lower a few coated wings into the preheated oil using tongs. Fry for about 6-8 minutes, until they’re cooked through but not yet golden brown. Transfer the par-fried wings to a wire rack or paper towel-lined plate.

For the Second Fry:

  1. Increase the temperature of the oil to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Once the oil is hot, carefully add the par-fried wings back into the oil in batches. Fry for an additional 5-7 minutes, until the wings turn deep golden brown and are incredibly crispy.
  3. Remove the wings from the oil and place them on a wire rack or paper towels to drain excess oil. Serve and enjoy!

Serve the twice-fried crispy cornstarch chicken immediately while they’re still hot and irresistibly crispy. Some options include buffalo sauce, teriyaki glaze, honey garlic, or any of the international seasoning blends mentioned below.

Garnish with chopped herbs, sesame seeds, or a squeeze of lemon or lime juice for a pop of freshness.

cornstarch crusted chicken wings with french fries and dips


Seasonings and Sauces for Crispy Cornstarch Wings

While I could easily eat these fried chicken wings as is, I decided to include some tantalizing seasoning ideas to give you options to try at home:

Classic buffalo style: Toss your crispy wings in a mixture of melted butter and hot sauce, resulting in that signature spicy and tangy Buffalo flavor. Serve with celery sticks and blue cheese dressing for the ultimate experience.

Honey Sriracha sauce: Combine sweet and heat by mixing honey and Sriracha sauce. The honey’s sweetness complements the crispiness perfectly, while the Sriracha adds a delightful kick. Garnish with chopped cilantro for a hint of freshness.

Garlic Parmesan topping: Infuse your wings with sophistication by coating them in a blend of grated Parmesan cheese, minced garlic, dried oregano, and black pepper. This savory combination offers a rich, irresistible, umami flavor.

Sesame ginger glaze: This Asian-inspired glaze combines toasted sesame oil, soy sauce, minced ginger, and honey for a balanced blend of sweet, savory, and slightly spicy flavors. Finish with a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds for added texture.

Korean gochujang glaze: My current favorite! Toss your wings in a mixture of gochujang (fermented chili paste or powder), soy sauce, a splash of vinegar, a pinch of mustard powder, fresh chopped garlic and ginger, and some brown sugar. The result is a harmonious balance of sweet, spicy, and savory Asian-style flavor.

Mexican-inspired chili lime zest: Zing up your wings with a sprinkle of chili powder, cumin, and a generous squeeze of fresh lime juice for a vibrant, tangy flair Mexican street food-style chicken dish.

Thai coconut curry: My second favorite, because I love cooking with coconut milk! Whip up an easy marinade using coconut milk, store-bought red curry paste, lime juice, and a splash of fish sauce for that perfect umami kick. You can skip the fish sauce if you’re not crazy about the odor, and substitute it with a pinch of salt instead. Garnish with chopped cilantro and crushed toasted peanuts.

a serving of cornstarch fried chicken wings with caesar salad


Storing and Reheating

Proper storage and reheating will allow the chicken to retain as much flavor and crunch beyond the initial cooking if you’re stuck with leftovers.

Storing: After cooking, allow the wings to cool to room temperature before storing. Then, follow these steps:

  • Single Layer: Place the cooked wings in a single layer on a baking sheet or plate. This prevents them from sticking together and losing their crispiness.
  • Covering: Loosely cover the wings with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. This helps prevent moisture from entering while allowing excess steam to escape. A buildup of steam will cause the coating to become soggy.
  • Refrigeration: Store the covered wings in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Reheating: When it’s time to reheat your chicken wings, you’ll want to revive that satisfying crunch. Here’s how:

  • Oven: Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Place the wings on a wire rack on top of a baking sheet. This allows air to circulate and maintains their crunchiness. Reheat for about 10-15 minutes, turning them once to ensure even heating.
  • Air fryer: Preheat your air fryer to 375°F (190°C). Arrange the wings in a single layer, and air fry for 5-8 minutes, turning once halfway through. The air fryer method provides excellent results as it recreates the initial crispiness.
  • Microwave (for short crispiness): While the microwave won’t restore the original crispy texture fully, it’s a quick option. Heat the wings in 30-second increments, using the defrost setting to minimize sogginess.

Extra Tip: To help revive the crispiness, lightly spritz the wings with a bit of cooking spray or brush them with a thin layer of oil before reheating. This trick helps restore some of the crunch lost during refrigeration.

Crispy Cornstarch Chicken Wings FAQs

Can I use other types of meat for this recipe?

Absolutely! You can adapt this recipe for other cuts like chicken drumsticks, boneless chicken tenders, or even cauliflower florets for a vegetarian option.

Can I use other gluten-free substitutes for cornstarch?

Gluten-free alternatives like potato starch or rice flour are great options to substitute for cornstarch to achieve a crispy coating.

Can I make these wings ahead of time for a party?

While the best crispiness is achieved right after cooking, you can prepare the wings ahead of time and reheat them in the oven or air fryer just before serving to regain some of the crunch.

Crispy Cornstarch Chicken Wings

These Crispy Cornstarch Chicken Wings are crunchy on the outside, and tender and juicy on the inside, and requires just 2 ingredients!

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds about 900g chicken wings, split into drumettes and flats
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon salt optional
  • Cooking oil for frying (if using the frying method)
  • Coating sauce of your choice optional

Instructions

Prepare the Chicken Wings:

  • Pat the chicken wings dry using paper towels. Ensure they are completely dry to achieve optimal crispiness. If desired, sprinkle salt over the wings for seasoning.
  • In a bowl, combine the cornstarch and optional salt. Toss the dry chicken wings in the cornstarch mixture, ensuring an even and light coating.

Cooking Method Options:

  • Method 1: Twice Deep-Fried
  • For the First Fry:
  • In a large pot or deep fryer, heat vegetable oil to 325°F (165°C).
  • Carefully lower a few coated wings into the preheated oil using tongs. Fry for about 6-8 minutes, until they’re cooked through but not yet golden brown. Transfer the par-fried wings to a wire rack or paper towel-lined plate.
  • For the Second Fry:
  • Increase the temperature of the oil to 375°F (190°C).
  • Once the oil is hot, carefully add the par-fried wings back into the oil in batches. Fry for an additional 5-7 minutes, until the wings turn deep golden brown and are incredibly crispy.
  • Remove the wings from the oil and place them on a wire rack or paper towels to drain excess oil. Serve and enjoy!

This recipe for crunchy cornstarch fried wings is one of my absolute favorite chicken dishes to make because it’s uncomplicated, only requires 2 to 3 ingredients, and produces the crispiest chicken I’ve ever eaten! Give this recipe a try and let me know how it turns out.



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