Crispy Air Fryer Buffalo Chicken Wings

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These crispy air fryer buffalo chicken wings will be your new favorite appetizer! Just as crispy as the deep-fried version, these air-fried chicken wings are super crispy and tossed in homemade buffalo sauce. 

These buffalo chicken wings are a finger-lickin’ treat! Perfectly crispy on the outside and juicy and tender on the inside tossed in a spicy buffalo sauce. Served with ranch and celery sticks they make a great main dish or appetizer. My whole family loves them and we almost never have any leftovers!

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Shoutout to my sister Rebekah, because this is her recipe and it’s one of our family’s favorite recipes! I should have a section on the blog just for her recipes because they are some of our favorites. A few others are – The Best Ever Lasagna, How To Make Fresh Pasta Dough, Homemade Ravioli, Strawberry Lemonade From Scratch, Strawberry Lemonade Popsicles, Sushi rice, Homemade Sushi Rolls, and Crispy Shredded Hash Browns. 

Made in the air fryer these chicken wings don’t require much oil, and you don’t have to deal with an oily mess or too much clean-up. My dad recently got a new air fryer because our last one started having a weird error and just stopped working. This new one has many more settings and functions and I’m excited to try them out. These wings were my first time trying it out, and I’d say it was a success!

If you don’t have an air fryer, you can totally make these chicken wings in the oven as well. I’ve included instructions below for both cooking methods!

Key Ingredients In these buffalo chicken wings

Chicken wings – Organic drumettes and flats. Fresh or frozen. If using frozen, make sure to completely thaw the wings before cooking. 

White or brown rice flour – A secret ingredient (ssshhh). Gives the perfect crispy crunchy exterior. 

Cornstarch- Another secret ingredient. Helps the wings get extra crispy in the air fryer. Can use tapioca starch/ flour instead too!

Seasonings – Cayenne pepper, ground paprika, garlic powder, salt, and freshly ground black pepper. I’m not a huge fan of spicy foods and my sister likes to put extra cayenne pepper on the wings when she makes them for us(eye roll). So you can totally add more or less spice depending on your preference!

Oil- A must get the wings crispy in the air fryer. A little bit is added to the wings with the seasonings then halfway through the cooking process.

Hot sauce – To make the buffalo sauce, we love the Louisiana hot sauce but use your favorite brand. 

Melted butter – To make the buffalo sauce.

How to Make Air Fryer Buffalo Chicken Wings:

All ingredients, measurements, and instructions are in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

Step one: Rinse and pat dry the chicken wings. Add them to a large gallon bag with cayenne pepper, ground paprika, garlic powder, salt, freshly ground black pepper, and vegetable oil. Mix until all the wings are well coated. 

Step two: Next add the brown rice flour and cornstarch to the wings. Close the bag and mix very well again until everything is coated. 

Step three: Transfer the chicken wings to a sheet pan. Then preheat the Ninja Foodi air fryer for 5 minutes at 385 degrees. 

Step four: Add as many wings as will fit comfortably without stacking or overlapping onto the air fryer basket. Cook the wings on the air crisp setting for 15 – 20 minutes or until they are golden brown and crispy. Set aside and continue cooking the rest of the wings. 

Step five: Once all the wings are finished cooking, add them to a large bowl with homemade buffalo sauce then mix to coat. Enjoy!

How to make the homemade buffalo sauce

Step one: In a medium saucepan heat the butter until it is melted and just starts to look bubbly. Remove from the heat. 

Step two: Then immediately add the hot sauce and freshly ground black pepper. Mix very well. 

Step three: Add the sauce to a large bowl to mix with the crispy wings or serve in a small bowl as a dipping sauce on the side. 

Kitchen Items You Might Need For This Recipe

Ninja Foodi Air fryer

Oil spray or silicone brush

Sheet pan with wire racks

Tapioca starch/flour

Brown rice flour

How to make crispy buffalo wings in the oven

Step one. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line two sheet pans with wire racks, then set them aside. 

Step two. Rinse and pat dry the chicken wings. Transfer them to a large gallon bag with seasonings, and oil. Mix everything together very well. Then add the rice flour and cornstarch. Mix very well. 

Step three. Arrange the chicken wings on the sheet pans with wire racks. Don’t overlap or stack, leave enough space for each wing so they all can be nice and crispy. 

Step four. Bake for 40 minutes – 1 hour, or until they are golden brown and very crispy. 

Recipe tips for the best crispy buffalo chicken wings

Making crispy air fryer wings is a super easy process, and here are my tips and tricks to help you get the best wings every time!

Dry the wings before adding the seasonings. After rinsing the chicken wings, make sure to pat the wings completely dry with a paper towel so they can get extra crispy in the oven. Any excess water can lead to soggy wings and the coating might not stick as well. 

Use the secret ingredients. Make sure to use cornstarch or tapioca starch and brown rice flour, these secret ingredients are the key to the crispiest wings you ever eat! 

Preheat the air fryer. Preheating the air fryer helps the wings to cook as soon as they are placed inside, allowing them to get crispier faster. 

Spray with a little bit of oil spray. Halfway through the cooking process lightly brush onto the wings. I just use a silicone pastry brush and dab each one with a little bit of oil. Alternatively, you could spray them with a little bit of olive oil spray. Make sure not to use conventional oil sprays, because it can possibly cause the non-stick coating of your air fryer to wear away. Try to get one as natural as you can or get a refillable oil spray.

Air fry wings in a single layer. There’s no need to flip the wings halfway through the cooking as long as they are cooked in a single layer. That way the hot air can circulate better!

When making the buffalo sauce. Make sure to add the hot sauce to the butter while it’s still hot and bubbly, this helps the hot sauce and butter emulsion better. 

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Overhead image of buffalo chicken wings on a platter.

Crispy Air Fryer Buffalo Chicken Wings

These crispy air fryer buffalo chicken wings will be your new favorite appetizer! Just as crispy as the deep-fried version, these air-fried chicken wings are super crispy and tossed in homemade buffalo sauce.
3 from 1 vote
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Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 28 - 30 wings
Calories: 84kcal
Cost: $20

Equipment

  • Air fryer

Ingredients

  • 2 lb chicken wings drumettes and flats
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 9 tablespoon white or brown rice flour
  • 3 tablespoon cornstarch or tapioca starch
  • Oil spray

Homemade buffalo sauce

  • cup hot sauce
  • cup butter 5 ½ tablespoons
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

Optional serving suggestions:

  • Ranch
  • Celery sticks

Instructions 

How to make chicken wings in air fryer

  • Start by rinsing and patting dry the chicken wings, then throw them into a plastic gallon bag. To the wings add all the seasonings - cayenne pepper, ground paprika, garlic powder, salt and ground black pepper, and vegetable oil. Close the bag and shake the bag until the wings are well coated.
  • Next, add the rice flour and cornstarch to the chicken wings. Close the bag again and shake until all the wings are well coated. Transfer them to a sheet pan
  • Next, preheat your Ninja Foodi air fryer at 385 degrees Fahrenheit for 5 minutes. Then add enough wings to cover the air fryer basket without stacking or crowding the pan, you might need to cook the wings in batches. Cook for 15 minutes, about halfway through spray the wings lightly with oil spray so they get nice and crispy. 
  • Once the wings are golden brown and crispy, transfer the cooked wings to a serving platter then cook your next batch. Repeat with remaining wings. 

Making the buffalo sauce

  • In a small saucepan heat butter until melted and it just starts to bubble. Immediately pour in the hot sauce and black pepper then whisk until combined. 
  • Once all the wings are finished cooking, serve immediately with the buffalo sauce as a dipping sauce or toss all the wings in the buffalo sauce. Serve with ranch and celery sticks and enjoy!

Notes

Mix the hot sauce with the butter while the butter is still hot so it can emulsify. 
How to make crispy buffalo wings in the oven
Step one: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line two sheet pans with wire racks, then set them aside.
Step two: Rinse and pat dry the chicken wings. Transfer them to a large gallon bag with seasonings, and oil. Mix everything together very well. Then add the rice flour and cornstarch. Mix very well. 
Step three: Arrange the chicken wings on the sheet pans with wire racks. Don’t overlap or stack, leave enough space for each wing so they all can be nice and crispy.
Step four. Bake for 40 minutes - 1 hour, or until they are golden brown and very crispy.

Nutrition

Calories: 84kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 19mg | Sodium: 330mg | Potassium: 35mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 0.02g | Vitamin A: 144IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 0.2mg

All nutrition information is automatically generated and should be only used as a rough estimate. This recipe card may contain affiliate links.

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8 Comments

  1. Wow, these crispy air fryer buffalo chicken wings are an absolute game-day favorite in my house now! Your recipe is incredibly easy to follow, and the results were mind-blowing.

    I’ve always loved buffalo wings, but the way they turned out in the air fryer exceeded my expectations. The skin was perfectly crispy, and the chicken was tender and juicy on the inside. Plus, the buffalo sauce had just the right amount of heat and tanginess.

    Your tips on coating the wings evenly and using a wire rack for that extra crispiness were spot-on. I appreciate how you also included instructions for making the sauce from scratch for those who like to customize the heat level.

    Thank you for sharing this amazing recipe! It’s a winner, and I can’t wait to serve these wings at our next gathering. Keep those air fryer recipes coming! 🍗🔥🏈

  2. ooouuu, im gonna try these!! that other person was rude AND wrong lol there are many places here in Atlanta with breaded and naked hot wings!! Thanks for the recipe. Now i know how to make them crispy in my Ninja Foodie!!

  3. 3 stars
    Looks like a great recipe. But…
    They aren’t buffalo wings, buffalo wings aren’t breaded.
    These are crispy breaded chicken wings that you happen to be serving with (almost) buffalo sauce that is missing cayenne, garlic powder and Worcester sauce if you want to make it authentic.

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