These chicken wings are marinated and basted in an Asian inspired chili lime sauce, then grilled for a different twist on a game day favorite. They're a little sweet and a little spicy, but super delicious.
I first saw these wings years ago on a cooking show and started looking for similar recipes. I've tweaked it a bit over the years and this one hits all the notes I'm looking for. It's got a little sweetness from honey, a little spiciness from Vietnamese garlic chili sauce, a little savoriness from soy sauce and shallots, and a little tanginess from rice vinegar and lime. There's a lot of flavors going on there but it all comes together well for a delicious end result.
How to make the chili lime chicken marinade and sauce
To make the marinade and sauce add ½ cup of Vietnamese chili garlic sauce to a medium bowl along with ⅓ cup honey, ⅓ cup vegetable oil, ¼ cup soy sauce, ¼ cup pureed shallot (onion works too), ¼ cup rice vinegar, 1 teaspoon salt, and the juice and zest of 1-2 limes. Whisk all of the ingredients to combine.
Preparing the chicken wings
For this recipe you'll need around 3 pounds of fresh chicken wings. If they are whole wings, with the drum and flat connected, cut between the joint of the drum and the flat to separate them. Then cut off the wing tips if desired. Give them a rinse and pat them dry with paper towels.
Add the wings to a large zip top bag and pour in half of the marinade. Seal the bag, then toss to coat. Reserve the other half of the marinade for basting later. Refrigerate for at least one hour up to overnight.
Cooking your wings
For this recipe I prefer to grill the wings. You do have to keep a closer eye on them so they don't burn but I think the smokey char you get on the edges of grilled chicken wings really enhances the flavor and appearance of the wings.
You can also bake them if you prefer. See my baked buffalo wings recipe for details on baking chicken wings in the oven.
When you're ready to cook the wings build a two zone fire in the grill. If you're using charcoal put all of the coals to one side of the grill so you have a hot zone and a cool zone. For a gas grill, depending on how many burners you've got, light one or two on one side and set to high. On the other side you can leave the burner off or set to the lowest setting. Grills vary a good bit in design and heat output. The goal is to have one side ripping hot and the other side receiving indirect heat. You want to aim for around 400-450 degrees.
Cook the wings on the cool side of the grill for around 30 minutes, flipping halfway through. Keep an eye on them during the cooking though. You may need to rotate the ones closest to the heat source if they start to burn.
Move the wings to the hot side of the grill for the last 10 to 15 minutes. If using gas, adjust the heat down to medium high. Baste the wings with your reserved marinade and flip them every few minutes.
They should build up a nice thick glaze. A little char is good but try to avoid burning the skin. If they're getting too much char move them back over to the cooler side to finish off.
Serving your grilled chili lime chicken wings
To serve garnish the wings with chopped cilantro and scallions and serve with lime wedges. If you want to serve a dipping sauce with them, ranch goes well.
If serving these chicken wings as meal, I recommend a simple bowl of steamed rice on the side.
More Chicken Wing Recipes
Chili Lime Chicken Wings
- ½ cup Vietnamese chili garlic sauce Sriracha works too
- ⅓ cup honey
- ⅓ cup vegetable oil
- ¼ cup low sodium soy sauce
- ¼ cup pureed shallot
- ¼ cup rice vinegar
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 2 tsp lime zest
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 3 lbs whole jumbo chicken wings
- chopped cilantro and scallions for topping, optional
- Mix all ingredients except the wings in a medium bowl.
- Reserve around a half cup of the mixture and add the rest to a large zip top plastic bag and add chicken wings then toss to coat. Let marinate for around 1 hour up to overnight.
- Make a two zone fire in your grill. If using charcoal place your coals on one side giving you a hot side and a warm side. If using gas turn one burner to high and a second burner on the opposite side to lowest setting. Place wings on the cooler side then cover and cook for around 30 minutes flipping half way through.
- Brush wings with reserved marinade then move to the hot side of the grill to finish. Cook for around 10 minutes occasionally flipping and basting with the marinade.
- Top with chopped cilantro and scallions and serve with lime wedges and your favorite dipping sauce.
* All nutrition information we provide are estimates based on third party calculators. We encourage you to calculate these on your own for accurate results.