Extra Crispy Chicken wings with the zesty flavor of lemon pepper are a delicious twist on a classic and easy to make, fried, air fried, or baked!
These lemon pepper wings are coated in an irresistible mixture of melted butter and lemon pepper seasoning. They are tangy, zesty, and extra crispy with the help of a little bit of flour and oil.
You can make lemon pepper wings three different ways! Use whichever method is most convenient for you. Choose from deep-frying (the traditional method), air frying, or baking chicken wings in the oven. You don’t need a deep fryer either. I do all of my frying in a heavy dutch oven on the stove.
However you decide to cook these wings, you’ll be glad that you did!
And, if you want to try another spin on the classic chicken wing, grab my recipe for Smoked Chicken Wings!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Big Flavor – Adding lemon pepper seasoning and lemon juice to a wing sauce is a different experience from the typical hot buffalo wing, but it’s super tasty. This recipe is great for those who don’t enjoy spicy foods but can also be spiced up a bit if you like.
- Three Ways to Cook It– I’ll show you how to make chicken wings using a deep fryer or a pot of oil on the stove. I’ll also tell you how to make this recipe in the air fryer or in your oven.
- Extra Crispy Wings – If I’m eating chicken wings, they better be extra crispy! A thin coating of flour helps these wings get that way.
Ingredients In Lemon Pepper Chicken Wings
Here’s what you need to make these tasty, sharable appetizers.
- Chicken Wings: The sauce we’re making is enough to coat 3 pounds of chicken wings. Separate the wings into drumettes and wingettes if needed.
- Flour, salt, and pepper: Before frying, the wings get a thin coating of seasoned flour. This gives them an extra crispy exterior.
- Oil, for frying: Vegetable Oil, Canola Oil, or Peanut Oil works well for deep frying. The exact amount you need will depend on the size of your pot or deep fryer.
- Lemon Pepper Sauce: This wing sauce is so simple! Mix together melted butter, lemon pepper seasoning, and the juice from half a lemon. Before you juice the lemon, zest it so you can use the zest along with some fresh parsley as a delicious garnish.
Complete list of ingredients and amounts can be found in the recipe card below.
Once you learn how to make lemon pepper sauce, you can put it on chicken, fish, or vegetables too. This sauce is tasty on everything.
If you are planning to bake your wings or air fry them, you’ll want to use a mixture of cornstarch and baking powder in place of the flour. This works better to get them extra crispy without all the oil!
How To Make Lemon Pepper Chicken Wings
First I’ll show you how to make crispy lemon pepper chicken wings by deep frying them! You can use a dutch oven or an electric deep fryer for this method.
- Prep the Wings: Make sure the chicken is dry by patting the wings with paper towels. Then combine flour with salt and pepper in a bowl.
- Coat with Flour: Coat each chicken wing in the flour, pressing it in so that flour gets into all the little nooks and crannies of the wings. Shake off excess flour, and place on a wire rack to air dry.
- Fry: To a dutch oven or deep fryer, add about 1 ½ – 2 inches of oil and preheat to 350°F/180°C. Drop the wings into the hot oil, working in 4 batches so that you don’t overcrowd the pot. Deep fry for 6-7 minutes, making sure that the temperature of the oil does not drop.
- Keep Warm: Remove wings when the internal temperature is 165°F/74°C, and place them on a wire rack in a warm oven as you fry the other batches.
- Make the Sauce: To make lemon pepper sauce for wings, melt the butter, then mix it with lemon pepper seasoning and lemon juice.
- Toss: Toss the crispy chicken wings in the sauce. Garnish with fresh parsley, lemon zest, and extra lemon pepper seasoning if desired.
For the crispiest wings, let them air dry overnight in the fridge on a wire rack. Leave them uncovered so that the skin really dries out!
How to Air Fry Crispy Lemon Pepper Wings
Follow this recipe, but instead of flour, toss the wings in 1 tablespoon of aluminum-free baking powder and 1 tablespoon of cornstarch.
Air Fry wings at 400°F/200°C for 20 minutes. Shake the wings once or twice during that time, and be sure not to overcrowd the air fryer basket. Toss the wings with the lemon pepper sauce before serving.
See my recipe for Air Fryer Buffalo Chicken Wings for more details about the process for air frying wings. It’s easy and low-mess.
How to Bake Crispy Lemon Pepper Chicken Wings
Just like the air fryer, use cornstarch and baking powder to coat the wings.
Bake in a preheated 450°F/230°C oven for 35-40 minutes. For easy cleanup, line the pan with foil. Add the sauce to the wings once they are cooked through.
- Toss ‘Em! When adding sauce to chicken wings, the best way is to place hot wings in a large bowl, then pour the sauce over them. Use the bowl to stir and flip the wings to evenly cover each piece. If you’re not that confident yet, you can stir them in the bowl with a spoon instead.
- Must-Have Dip: Chicken wings require a creamy dipping sauce. Lemon pepper wings are delicious with Blue Cheese Dressing or Ranch.
- Enjoy Some Variety: You can serve different flavors of chicken wings. Once they’re cooked, toss half of them in the lemon pepper sauce, and toss the other half in classic Buffalo Wing Sauce.
How to Buy and Prepare Chicken Wings
Here’s what to look for when shopping for chicken wings, plus some helpful information on how to prep them for cooking.
- Fresh is Best. Frozen Chicken wings are much harder to get crispy because the freezing process makes them wet. Look for fresh chicken wings that have been air chilled rather than water chilled. If you really want to cook frozen wings today, check out my Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Wings recipe!
- Whole or Pieces? Depending on your store or butcher, you may be able to buy chicken wings already split into flats and drums. Sometimes, what is available are whole chicken wings, which have a wingette, drumette, and an extra piece (the tip) that you don’t need. These need to be butchered before you start cooking.
- To separate whole wings: You need a sharp knife and a cutting board. Use the knife to cut off the wing tip (that’s the pointy part that doesn’t have any meat on it), by cutting through the joint. Then, find the space in the joint between the other two pieces, and carefully cut them apart. Discard the tips and start cooking!
Leftover chicken wings can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. They are best reheated in the air fryer or the oven. Microwaving wings just doesn’t work well.
What To Serve With Lemon Pepper Wings
I often make wings and enjoy them all on their own as a delicious meal. A side of celery and carrot sticks is sometimes all that is required!
You can deep fry frozen wings, although I find that they aren’t as juicy as fresh ones. You will need to fry the wings for at least 10 minutes to get them cooked through. Also, be careful of splatter when adding frozen things to hot oil.
My lemon pepper sauce is super easy! It’s made with melted butter, lemon juice, and lemon pepper seasoning.
You can add some heat to the lemon pepper sauce by mixing it with Franks Red Hot or adding cayenne pepper. I’ll let you decide how hot you want your chicken wings! Play around with the sauce until it’s perfect for you.
Lemon Pepper Wings are a great change from the typical Buffalo-style wings, and the whole family will love the tangy, tasty lemon sauce. Pin the recipe for later!
- 3 pounds (1.5kg) chicken wings separated into drumettes and wingettes, see notes 1 and 2
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Oil for frying
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley for garnish, optional
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon zest for garnish, optional
If Baking or Air Frying
- 1 tablespoon baking powder aluminum free
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
Lemon Pepper Sauce
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons lemon pepper seasoning
- ½ lemon juiced
- Pat the chicken wings dry with paper towels.
- In a bowl, combine flour with salt and pepper. Coat each chicken wing in flour, press it in the flour so you get all the nooks and crannies. Shake off any excess flour, and place on a wire rack to air dry as you preheat the oil.
- To a dutch oven or deep fryer, add about 1 ½ – 2 inches of oil and preheat to 350°F/180°C. Drop the wings in hot oil, in 4 batches so you don’t overcrowd the pot. Deep fry for 6-7 minutes and make sure that the temperature does not drop. Remove the wings when the internal temperature is 165°F/74°C, and place on a wire rack in a warm oven as you fry the other batches.
- To make the sauce, melt the butter then mix it with lemon pepper seasoning, and lemon juice.
- Toss the crispy chicken wings in the sauce, then garnish with fresh parsley, lemon zest, and extra lemon pepper seasoning if desired. Enjoy warm.
- Pat the chicken wings dry with paper towels. Skip the flour, and toss wings in 1 tablespoon of aluminum free baking powder and 1 tablespoon of cornstarch.
- Bake at 450°F/230°C for 35-40 minutes.
- Remove the wings from the oven once they are cooked through, and toss with lemon pepper sauce before serving.
- Pat the chicken wings dry with paper towels. Skip the flour, and toss wings in 1 tablespoon of aluminum-free baking powder and 1 tablespoon of cornstarch.
- Air fry 400°F/200°C for 20 minutes, shaking or flipping the wings once or twice, until they are cooked through.
- Remove from the air fryer and toss wings with lemon pepper sauce before serving.
- When you buy wings, try to get air-chilled ones rather than water chilled ones. These have less retained moisture and result in crispier wings. You also want to use fresh wings if possible, or frozen wings that have been thawed.
- For the crispiest wings, let raw wings air-dry overnight in the fridge on a wire rack. Leave them uncovered so that the skin really dries out!
- Chicken wings require a creamy dipping sauce. Lemon pepper wings are delicious with Blue Cheese Dressing or Ranch.
- The best way to evenly coat wings with sauce is to use a large mixing bowl to toss the sauce and wings together. Otherwise, use a spoon to stir and evenly coat the wings.
- You can use the methods described in this recipe to make other flavors of wings. Try Buffalo sauce or BBQ sauce too.
- To Store: Leftover chicken wings can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. They reheat best in a 350°F air fryer (3-5 minutes).
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.
© Little Sunny Kitchen