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Dill Pickle Smoked Chicken Wings

Have your pickle and eat it too! Try these dill pickle brined smoked chicken wings - they're big on flavour, majorly crispy, totally delicious and easy to whip up on the Traeger or pellet smoker. Deep-fry and oven-baked instructions included.

"What's on the menu, Kevy?"

"CHICKEN WAAAAANGS"

That exact conversation has happened more times than I can count on both hands (and maybe both feet).

Kevy and I love to host our friends for dinner. We often start setting Friday night's menu on Tuesday. And I swear since we got the Traeger, every time I've asked what was on the menu - this Traeger smoked chicken wings recipe has been the answer.

I don't know what it is about chicken wings, but they're Kevy's favourite.

This recipe is dedicated to my husband - the chicken wing connoisseur.

Smoked dill pickle chicken wings in a white bowl with a dill mayo dip.

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Smoked chicken wings in a bowl with dill mayo.

Tips + Tricks For Perfect Pickle Wings

No. 1 --> Use good pickles! We've experimented with some store brand pickles and the brine just isn't the same. Besides, since you're eating all the pickles, they might as well be good!

No. 2 --> Place the wings properly on the grill. Kevy insists that you have to place it outside skin upwards. If you look at your wings, you'll see what he means.

No. 3 --> Buy pre-split wings. It makes the whole process easier and quicker. One of my favourite things about this crispy smoked chicken wings recipe is the total ease of preparation.

Ingredients

  • Split chicken wings
  • Leftover pickle juice
Traeger smoked chicken wings in a brown paper lined white bowl.

How to make

  1. Place wings into a vacuum marinating container, an empty pickle jar, or even a heavy duty ziplock bag.
  2. Pour the pickle juice into the container, jar, or bag, removing as much air as possible, then place the chicken wings in the fridge.
  3. Brine the wings in the pickle juice in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
  4. After 24 hours, preheat your smoker to 225f. Remove the wings from the brine, shaking off any excess brine, and place on the smoker, outside skin up.
  5. Smoke the wings on the second rack of your smoker at 225f for 25 minutes, then flip and smoke another 25 minutes.
  6. Flip the wings one final time and increase the heat to 425f. Smoke the wings at 425f for 20-30 minutes, until the skin is nice and crispy.

Don't have a smoker?

These wings can be deep-fried, or baked in the oven. This recipe is too good not to have made sure it works for everyone!

DEEP FRYER

  1. Preheat your deep fryer, or a pot filled with a few inches of oil to 375F.
  2. Remove wings from brine and pat dry.
  3. Add wings to deep fryer, or oil, and fry for 10-12 minutes.
  4. Remove from fryer, drain, and serve

OVEN-BAKED

  1. Preheat oven to 425F.
  2. Remove wings from brine, pat dry, place in a single layer on an oiled baking sheet.
  3. Bake for 35-40 minutes.
Close up of these smoked dill pickle chicken wings

Marinade for how long?

We believe in the long marinade. 24 hours is best. We've gone as short as 6 hours and as long as 24. The 24-hour wings have the best flavour and texture. The skin was also crispier on the 24h pickle brine marinade.

PSA: 36 hours is too long! IMO.

One night, when we were supposed to be smoking chicken wings, Kevin and I end up at 1/8 mile drag races well into the night. WHOOPS! We didn't end up smoking the dill pickle wings until the following day after lunch and I didn't love them as much.

Close up of the crispy skin on the Traeger smoked chicken wings.

How long to smoke chicken wings

Because the initial cook is at a low temperature, it seems like you're smoking these chicken wings for ages. The first 50 minutes is what gives these smoked wings a hint of smokey deliciousness while locking in the moisture. The last 20 -30 minutes gives them an incredibly crispy skin.

These Traeger smoked chicken wings cook as follows:

  1. 225f for 25 minutes, outside skin UP
  2. 225f for 25 minutes, outside skin DOWN
  3. 425f for 20-30 minutes, outside skin UP

Confirm doneness with an instant-read thermometer, the wings should be 165f.

Kevy is very clear on the orientation of the wings - I don't make the rules, I just follow them - and his smoked chicken wings recipe!

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📖 Printable Recipe

Dill pickle smoked chicken wings in a dish.
Yield: 24 wings

Smoked Dill Pickle Chicken Wings

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Marinade Time: 1 day
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 day 55 minutes

Have your pickle and eat it too! Try these smoked dill pickle chicken wings - they're big on flavour, majorly crispy, and totally delicious. Deep-fry and oven-baked instructions included.

Ingredients

  • 24 chicken wings
  • pickle brine - enough to cover the wings

Instructions

  1. Add wings to a marinating container. And pour pickle juice over the wings.
  2. Remove air from the container and place in the fridge to marinate for up to 24 hours.
  3. Preheat pellet grill to 225f (or see notes below for other cooking methods.)
  4. Remove wings from marinade, shaking off excess brine, and place on the smoker outside skin facing upwards.
  5. Smoke at 225f for 25 minutes, then flip and smoke for another 25 minutes.
  6. Increase heat to 425f and cook chicken wings another 20-30 minutes to ensure a crispy skin.

Notes

DEEP FRYER

  • Prepare wings as described in steps 1 & 2
  • Preheat your deep fryer, or a pot filled with a few inches of oil to 375F.
  • Remove wings from brine and pat dry.
  • Add wings to deep fryer, or oil, and fry for 10-12 minutes.
  • Remove from fryer, drain, then toss in a large bowl with salt and pepper before serving.

OVEN-BAKED

  • Prepare wings as described in steps 1 & 2
  • Preheat oven to 425F.
  • Remove wings from brine, pat dry, place in a single layer on an oiled baking sheet. Crack some salt and pepper over the wings if desired.
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 366Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 91mgSodium: 486mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 19g

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Colleen

Friday 12th of June 2020

Hi there, i just got a Masterbuilt electric smoker for my husband for fathers day and am wondering if this recipe would work the same on it? Thanks! and Hello to a fellow Canadian (Sask here)

Ally

Friday 12th of June 2020

Yes! It should work exactly the same! I'm sure he will LOVE his gift :)

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