Dry-Rubbed Chicken Wings With Barbecue Sauce

January 22, 2019

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes:

The dry rub on these wings is delightfully flavorful. The wings get marinated overnight and then roasted in the oven—no dredging, and no frying. The intense flavor of these wings actually renders the barbecue sauce optional. (Although the sauce is also excellent.)

The barbecue sauce is versatile. You can dip the wings into the barbecue sauce, or you could use the sauce on ribs or as a burger condiment or even roasted veggies. The dry rub can also be used on anything, from protein to veggies.

Josh Cohen

Serves: 8 to 12 people
Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 30 min


Chicken wings

  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1.5 tablespoons smoked salt
  • 2 teaspoons granulated garlic
  • 2 teaspoons granulated onion
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried coriander
  • 4 pounds chicken wings

Barbecue sauce

  • 1 large sweet onion, cut into rings, 1/2 inch thick
  • 12 ounces cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 teaspoon Frank's Red Hot Sauce
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons smoked salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
In This Recipe


  1. Use a spice grinder or mortar and pestle to grind the dried thyme and oregano. It won't turn into a perfectly uniform fine powder—just do the best you can.
  2. Add the ground spices to a large mixing bowl, then add all the remaining spices. Mix thoroughly. Place the chicken wings in a separate large bowl. Sprinkle the spice mix evenly over the top of the chicken wings, then toss to evenly coat the wings in spices. Marinate in the refrigerator overnight.
  3. You can make the barbecue sauce ahead of time if you want. It keeps in the refrigerator for at least one week. To make the sauce, heat your broiler to 550°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a silicone mat or foil (just don't use parchment, which can burn), and broil the onion and tomatoes for 8 to 10 minutes, or until they begin to char and blacken along the edges.
  4. Add the charred onion and tomatoes to a high-powered blender. Add the remaining sauce ingredients. Blend on the highest setting. Set the sauce aside until ready to use. Refrigerate if you're not using it imminently.
  5. To cook the wings, preheat the oven to 500°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a silicone mat or foil. Arrange the wings on the baking sheet. Cook in the oven for 20 minutes, then drop the temperature to 350°F and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Serve immediately, with barbecue sauce on the side for dipping. Enjoy!

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Reviews (1) Questions (0)

1 Review

Ella Q. January 31, 2019
These are so excellent—I want to try using this rub on a whole chicken, too.