This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

Third try is a charm for the PERFECT Crispy Baked Buffalo Wings recipe. I’ve found the secret ingredient for making buffalo wings ultra crispy in the oven. Hint: it is not baking powder. And it’s exactly why I’m re-posting these with a new and much-improved recipe!

Crispy Baked Buffalo Wings served on parchment paper on a platter.

It’s not that I mind eating the occasional deep fried food. Who doesn’t love French fries? I just don’t enjoy deep frying in my own kitchen; it’s too messy, too smelly, and then there’s disposing of the oil. Because of this aversion, I assumed that buffalo wings were only something to be ordered out.

But I’ve been enlightened; it’s possible to make super crispy, utterly delicious buffalo chicken wings in your oven without baking powder! The secret ingredient? Plain cornstarch. Here me out.

Ingredients You Need to Make Baked Buffalo Wings

raw chicken party wings and cornstarch flat lay

For the Hot Wings:

  • Cornstarch: not baking powder and certainly not baking soda – read why below
  • Kosher Salt: or fine sea salt
  • Chicken Wings: drumettes and flats separated (look for ‘party wings’ at the grocery store)
buffalo sauce ingredient flat lay

To Make the Buffalo Sauce:

  • Butter: if using unsalted butter, add 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt or 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Garlic: fresh garlic cloves
  • Hot Sauce: such as Cholula Original or Frank’s Red Hot
blue cheese dip ingredient flat lay

For the Easy Blue Cheese Dip

  • Blue Cheese: your favorite variety
  • Garlic: fresh garlic clove
  • Sour Cream: ideally full fat sour cream
  • White Vinegar: or white wine vinegar
  • Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Do NOT make the same mistake I did.

My first attempt at making these baked wings went terribly wrong, but it was my own fault. When I first tried the technique from the America’s Test Kitchen Meat Book, (where raw wings are coated with baking powder before baking and, like magic, the wings come out crispy) I knew I had to try it they were HORRIBLE.

It wasn’t until the next morning when I awoke with an awful taste in my mouth that I took another look at the recipe and realized that I’d used baking soda not baking powder. Whoops! Do not make the same mistake. After the baking soda flavor left my mouth, which was no less than a week, I decided to give the recipe another try. And the wings were very good, crispy on the outside; tender and flavorful on the inside.

Why Cornstarch is Better than Baking Powder for Crispy Baked Wings

But I have to make a confession: there was still a hint of metallic flavor from the baking powder that I didn’t care for, likely from the baking soda that is one of the ingredients. I learned that when I read the baking powder label, and the answer to the ultimate crispy chicken wings was right there. The first ingredient in baking powder is, drumroll please…

Cornstarch.

Dipping Crispy Baked Buffalo Wings in blue cheese dressing

When you coat chicken wings in plain cornstarch mixed with a little kosher salt before baking, you are rewarded with ultra tasty, divinely crispy wings with zero metallic flavor. They’re delicious on their own, but you can make them even better by bathing them in buttery homemade buffalo sauce and dipping them in my easy blue cheese dressing.

More Great Game Day Recipes

How to Make Crispy Buffalo Wings

Start by setting one oven rack in the upper-middle position and another in the lower-middle. Preheat the oven to 250°F and prepare a baking sheet with a foil or parchment-lined oven-safe wire rack, lightly greased with non-stick spray or oil. In a large bowl, combine cornstarch and kosher salt. Pat chicken drumettes and flats dry, then toss them in the cornstarch mixture to coat evenly.

Arrange them on the prepared rack in a single layer and bake on the lower-middle rack. After baking, increase the oven temperature to 425°F and move the chicken to the upper-middle rack, continuing to bake until golden brown and crispy, rotating the sheet halfway through.

While the chicken is baking, prepare the buffalo sauce. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat, adding minced garlic and cooking until the garlic is fragrant. Remove from heat and whisk in hot sauce until smooth. Once the chicken is done, let it rest for 5 minutes, then toss with the warm buffalo sauce in a large bowl.

Serve the coated wings with the blue cheese dip, made by smashing blue cheese and garlic into sour cream, adding vinegar, and seasoning with salt and black pepper to taste.

Recipe Video

Crispy Baked Buffalo Wings

5 from 13 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total: 1 hour 30 minutes
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Calories: 535
Servings: 6 people
This may be the easiest and most delicious buffalo wing recipe ever! Serve these with carrot and celery sticks and blue cheese dip.

Ingredients  

For the hot wings:

  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt or 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 3 pounds chicken wings drumettes and flats separated (look for ‘party wings’ at the grocery store)

For the buffalo sauce:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup hot sauce such as Cholula Original or Frank’s Red Hot

Easy Blue Cheese Dip

  • 1/2 cup blue cheese crumbled
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Instructions 

To make the wings:

  • Adjust oven racks so that one rack is in the upper-middle and one is in the lower-middle.
  • Preheat oven to 250°F.
  • Set an oven-safe wire rack into a baking sheet lined with foil or parchment paper. Spray wire rack with non-stick spray or brush with oil.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together cornstarch and kosher salt.
  • Pat chicken drumettes and flats dry with paper towels. Add to bowl with cornstarch mixture and toss to coat evenly. Arrange in a single layer on rack in baking sheet. Bake on lower-middle rack for 30 minutes.
  • Increase oven temperature to 425°F and move baking sheet to upper middle rack. Bake for 40-50 minutes more until golden brown, rotating the sheet half way through.
  • Meanwhile prepare buffalo sauce. Heat butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. When butter begins to melt, add minced garlic and stir. Cook and stir until butter is fully melted and garlic is fragrant; remove from heat. Whisk in hot sauce until smooth.
  • When wings are golden brown and crispy, remove them from oven and allow to rest on rack for 5 minutes. Then place wings in a large bowl and pour warm buffalo sauce over; gently stir to coat evenly. Transfer coated wings to platter and serve with blue cheese dip (recipe below).

Easy Blue Cheese Dip

  • Add blue cheese, garlic and sour cream to a medium bowl. Using the back of a fork, smash blue cheese crumbles into sour cream until flavors have melded. Stir in vinegar. Add salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Serve.

Notes

  1. Keep an eye on the wings in the last 25 minutes at 425˚F to be sure that they don’t get too brown for your taste. Some readers have preferred them baked for as little as 30 minutes at the higher temperature.

Nutrition

Calories: 535kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 45g | Saturated Fat: 21g | Cholesterol: 163mg | Sodium: 1522mg | Potassium: 302mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 1010IU | Vitamin C: 16.7mg | Calcium: 123mg | Iron: 1.4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Leave a comment & rate the recipe below!

Related Recipes

97 Comments

  1. Kelly Denson says:

    I will never fry wings again. These were literally the best chicken wings I have ever had (and I used to host 1000+ person wing competition in my town). These were so crispy! My secret addition: I added just a splash of fish sauce to the buffalo sauce and it added just a bit of umami that pushed them over the edge flavor wise. Thank you for this recipe!

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      I love to hear this, Kelly! Thank you for coming back to let me know. I’ll definitely try that splash of fish sauce the next time I make these.

  2. Judy Williams says:

    5 stars
    Absolutely the best wings ever! So easy and tasty. I followed the directions except I doubled the cornstarch and kosher salt to better coat the wings. My husband said this one was “out of the park!”

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      I’m so glad these were a hit with you and your husband, Judy! Thank you for coming back to let me know!

  3. jimmy mancini says:

    This is a ridiculous recipe! Way overcooked those poor little wings. Terribly dried out – no meat left on the bone. I should have known better than to cook for a total of 75 minutes. I’m looking for a better recipe

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      Oh no, Jimmy! I’m sorry this wasn’t what you were looking for.

  4. Carmen Lizakowski says:

    5 stars
    Made the wings tonight for the game. Wings came out great and crispy. Enjoyed that they even tasted like they had a light breading. Hubby actually thought they were breaded. I have never made wings at home because I do not deep fry at home. Watched oven timing and I pulled them about 4 minutes short of the 50. Great recipe. Thanks.

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      That’s wonderful, Carmen! Thank you for coming back to let me know.

  5. Ted Crum says:

    5 stars
    Thanks for the timely recipe!

    I googled “wings corn starch” hoping that someone else had worked through the Baking Powder error. The first ingredient in baking powder is Corn Starch; if you use pure starch you aren’t faced with chemical taste or worry about unproven health problems. IMHO, this is one place where regular salt is better than kosher – it mixes better with the starch and coats better. It tastes the same. (Would you put kosher salt on popcorn?)

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      My pleasure, Ted! So glad you enjoyed these. Thanks for your notes on salt; you make a good point. I’ve added an ‘or fine sea salt’ to the recipe.