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Smoked and Fried Chicken Wings

Courtesy Rodney Scott
Cook Time:
1 hr
Prep Time:
45 mins

Chef notes

Smoky and crisp chicken wings — what's not to love? Smoking the wings first instills that natural wood coal flavor. Frying them afterwards ensures they turn out piping hot with perfectly crispy skin.


Rodney's Sauce (makes 1 gallon)
  • 1 gallon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 cup ground black pepper
  • tablespoons crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 cups sugar
Buffalo Sauce
  • 2/3 cup hot sauce, preferably Texas Pete
  • 1/2 cup butter, very cold
  • 1/4 cup Rodney's Sauce (recipe above)
Rib Rub (makes 2 cups)
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup MSG
  • 1/4 cup freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup sweet paprika
  • 1/4 cup chile powder
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3-5 pounds jumbo sized chicken wings
  • 1/4 cup Rib Rub (recipe above)
  • canola oil, for frying
  • Buffalo sauce (recipe above)


For Rodney's Sauce:


Pour the vinegar in a small stock pot and warm over medium-high heat.


When the vinegar reaches 150 F degrees, about 5 minutes, add the sliced lemons and continue cooking for another 10 minutes.


Whisk in the ground cayenne pepper, black pepper, red pepper flakes and sugar.


Cook over medium-high heat until the sugar is completely dissolved and the sauce reaches 190 F degrees, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to completely cool. Refrigerate.

For the Buffalo Sauce:

Combine the hot sauce and butter in a small pot. Place over medium heat and stir until butter is fully melted and the mixture is slightly thicker. Remove from the heat and stir in Rodney's Sauce. Set aside.

For the Rib Rub:

Mix all ingredients together and place them in an airtight container. Cover and store in a cool dry place until ready to use.

For the wings:


Heat a smoker to 225 F-250 F.


Pat the wings dry and season with 1/4 cup of Rib Rub.


Load the wings onto the racks in the smoker. Do not stack them.


Smoke the wings for 45 minutes.


Remove wings from the smoker and allow to cool completely.


When ready to serve your wings, preheat the oil to 350 F. If you're using a Dutch oven for the frying, allow enough room for the wings to cook without the oil spilling over.


In small batches, place the cooled wings into the hot oil and allow to fry for 3-4 minutes. The skin should become crispy and deep brown in color.


Remove wings from hot oil and place in a medium sized mixing bowl. Add the desired amount of Buffalo sauce to the wings and toss to coat evenly.