Americans love eating chicken wings, averaging 25 BILLION per year! What’s more, this love affair with wings only intensifies come college basketball playoffs. Rather than create yet another recipe for the Buffalo hot wings, this one uses local honey for a sweet twist and homemade BBQ sauce.
These Honey BBQ Wings were grilled on the Kamander, Char-Broil’s new kamado grill. Invented by the Japanese nearly 3,000 years ago, kamado-style cooking has stood the test of time and for good reason. It cooks evenly, maintains a steady temperature and won’t dry out food. Personally, I own more than a dozen grills and smokers. But, if I had to pick just one, it’d be the kamado grill, hands down.
Since I began competing in BBQ with kamado grills two years ago, I’ve found two particular methods to be so helpful that I included them in my book, “The Kamado Smoker and Grill Cookbook.”
The first method is fire roasting, which gives the wings a smoky flavor, requires less handling during the cook and is less likely to burn the wings. To fire roast, cook indirect with a heat deflector/drip pan between the fire and food.
The second method is grilling, which takes half the time of roasting while yielding a crispier crust and a little more char flavor where the wings hit hotter grill grates. To grill, cook the wings directly over hot coals.
For this recipe, I chose the direct-grill method.
- 10 whole chicken wings
- 1/4 cup dry BBQ rub
- 1 cup ketchup
- 1/2 cup local honey
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon dried onion flake
- Prep the wings. Take the wings out of the packaging and wipe them dry. Place the wings on a rack and air dry them in the refrigerator for one hour. This step is optional, BUT it’ll give you the crispiest crust
- Preheat the grill to 375-400°f (medium high)
- Make the sauce. Combine and stir the Honey BBQ Sauce ingredients in a medium pot over medium high heat. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes to let the flavors blend. Taste for seasoning and add a pinch or two of salt and pepper as desired
- Season the wings on all sides with the Dry BBQ Rub
- Grill the wings. Place the wings top side down on the grate and cook, flipping every 5 minutes, until the wings reach an internal temperature of 180°f, (about 20-25 minutes). Keep the lid closed when you aren’t actively handling the wings
- Sauce the wings. Brush some Honey BBQ Sauce on all sides of the wings. Cook long enough for the sauce to “set” on the wings, about 1 minute per side. The sauce can burn, so keep a close watch. I recommend using the upper rack if your grill has one, as the heat is less intense and it’s easier to determine when to flip them
- Remove and serve with the remaining Honey BBQ Sauce on the side
BBQ Rub: Sweet and spicy commercial BBQ rub if preferred
Homemade Sauce: 1/4 cup honey + your favorite store bought sauce
Dried minced garlic: 1/4 teaspoon garlic paste or finely minced fresh garlic
Dried onion flake: 1/2 teaspoon finely minced sweet onion
Local Honey: Your favorite store-bought honey
To fire roast this recipe on the Kamander, preheat to the same temperature but put the drip pan in, too. Roast the wings for 25 minutes with the top down. then flip them and cook another 25 minutes. Sauce and cook until the sauce is set on the wings (5 to 10 minutes).