Nothing beats the classic Air Fryer Lemon Pepper Wings recipe. It has a bright and tangy citrus taste, with a dash of earthiness from the black pepper! 🤩 Fry it, to believe it!
One of my favorite wing recipes is the air fryer lemon pepper wings. Squeezing fresh lemon juice over them enhances the already tangy lemony taste.
Recently, the lemony wings has taken on a new increase in popularity as chefs all over social media have featured the classic seasoning on things like wood-fired steaks and whole chickens.
People adore them for the way the bright, acidic zest compliments the spicy black pepper, and for the way it goes well on just about anything. Potatoes, fish, and chicken wings are all delicious with a good sprinkling of lemon pepper seasoning!
However, the process of making lemon pepper from scratch is time-consuming as it involves dehydrating lemon rinds for an extended period and combining them with freshly ground black pepper and salt.
To make this recipe easier, we opted for a ready made lemon pepper dry rub.
Please note that we’re going to make the dry lemon pepper chicken wings. If you want the wet version, I have a tip for you below.
Air Fryer Lemon Pepper Chicken Wings Ingredients
Here are all the ingredients you will need to make air fried lemon pepper chicken wings:
- Chicken wings
- Garlic powder
- Lemon pepper seasoning
- Olive oil
- Lemon wedges and chopped parsley, for garnish
📣 You can find the exact measurements and adjust the number of servings in the recipe card down below.
💡Pro Tip: Some lemon pepper seasonings contain salt and some do not. If you’re using a seasoning that already contains salt, especially if it’s the first ingredient listed on the label, you may be able to skip using additional salt altogether.
You could always wait until the wings are done, then try them to taste for seasoning and sprinkle a little extra salt if needed. Better to be a bit under seasoned than too salty!
A note about wings: Chicken wings come whole and pre-cut. We always prefer to buy the pre-cut option (sometimes labeled party wings) because then you can avoid the additional prep of having to cut them before cooking.
ASMR Recipe Video: Air Fried Lemon Pepper Wings
Don’t have time to read? We made this short recipe video just for you. 😉
*You can find the exact amount of ingredients and adjust the number of servings in the recipe card below.
How to Make Lemon Pepper Wings in an Air Fryer?
Making lemon pepper wings in the air fryer is fast, easy, and requires almost no clean up! You’ll fall in love with these addictingly-delicious wings. This recipe will take about 30 minutes from start to finish, so the wings will be on the table in no-time!
1. Preheat your air fryer to 380°F (193°C).
If your air fryer doesn’t have a preheating option, you can set the temperature to 380°F (193°C) and then let it cook without food for 5 minutes.
Please don’t skip this step as longer cooking time may result in a dryer texture for your chicken wings.
2. Get your chicken wings ready.
If your wings are frozen, defrost them before continuing with the recipe. (The wings cannot be cooked frozen.) The best way to defrost wings is in the refrigerator overnight.
Alternatively, you could submerge the package of wings in a bowl of cold water and change the water every 30 minutes until the wings are defrosted.
Add the wings to a medium bowl and thoroughly pat them dry with a paper towel.
3. Season the wings.
Sprinkle on the garlic powder, salt and lemon pepper and toss to evenly coat all the wings.
In a small bowl, combine the olive oil with the remaining lemon pepper seasoning and set aside.
4. Air fry the chicken wings for 20-25 minutes.
When the air fryer is preheated, add the wings in a single layer. Air fry for about 12 minutes and then flip.
5. Prepare the basting sauce.
Combine olive oil and lemon pepper seasoning in a small bowl.
6. Baste the chicken wings with lemon pepper sauce.
Using a food-safe brush, brush all the wings with the prepared lemon pepper olive oil mixture.
Continue air frying until thoroughly crispy and cooked-through, about 10-12 minutes. To test if your wings are fully cooked, insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the largest wing: the internal temperature should be at least 165ºF.
I used a 6-quart air fryer to test this recipe. Cooking time and temperature may vary depending on your air fryer and the number of servings you are making. For optimal results, begin with the lower end of the suggested cooking time.
7. Serve and enjoy your air fryer lemon pepper chicken wings!
When the lemon pepper wings are completely cooked, carefully transfer to a plate. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve with lemon wedges on the side!
In addition to lemon wedges, we think these wings would go really well with a simple yogurt- or sour cream-based dip!
Just combine a little yogurt or sour cream with lemon juice and some chopped chives for a delicious, flavorful dip that perfectly complements the lemon pepper goodness!
Wet Lemon Pepper Chicken Wings
To make wet version of the lemon pepper chicken wings, simply melt ¼ cup butter in a saucepan together with 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of the lemon pepper dry rub.
After air frying the chicken wings, simply toss them with the lemon pepper sauce in a large mixing bowl.
If you want to make a sticky version, remove the wings from the air fryer when they hit 160°F and transfer them to the medium-sized saucepan with the lemon butter mixture
Put the pan back over low heat, tossing the wings constantly to finish cooking and to really adhere the sauce to the wings.
Freezing & Storage
Freezing: Once the air fryer lemon pepper wings have cooled completely, add to a freezer-style zip-top bag or airtight container and freeze for up to 2 months. To reheat, thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then follow the instructions below.
Fridge: Once the wings have cooled completely, add to a zip-top bag or airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Reheating: To reheat wings without sauce, add to an air fryer preheated to 350°F and air fry for 3-4 minutes or until heated through and crispy again.
Lemon Pepper Wings In Air Fryer FAQs
How to air fry lemon pepper wings?
To air fry lemon pepper wings, begin by thawing your chicken wings overnight if they are frozen. Then preheat your air fryer to 380°F (193°C). While preheating, coat the wings with oil, salt, garlic powder, and lemon pepper seasoning. Air fry the wings for 20-25 minutes until they are golden brown and crispy, flipping them halfway through. Check the internal temperature to ensure that it has reached 165°F (74°C) or higher. Serve with a side of lemon wedges and enjoy!
Zesty Air Fryer Lemon Pepper Wings Recipe
- 1 pound chicken wings 10-12 pieces
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning
Lemon Pepper Basting Sauce
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning
- 4 lemon wedges
- 1 teaspoon parsley chopped
- Preheat the air fryer to 380°F (193°C).
- Get your chicken wings ready. If you don’t have fresh ones, thaw them overnight. Then pat the wings dry with paper towels.
- While preheating, season the wings with oil, then add the salt, garlic powder, and lemon pepper seasoning. Toss and massage the wingettes and drumettes until fully coated.
- Air fry the seasoned lemon pepper wings for 20-25 minutes, flipping them halfway through. Cook until they turn golden brown and crispy. Ensure that the internal temperature of the wings reaches 165°F (74°C) or higher.
- In a small bowl, prepare the lemon pepper basting sauce by combining olive oil and lemon pepper seasoning.
- Brush the chicken wings with the sauce halfway through cooking, and continue brushing until all the sauce has been used.
- Serve and enjoy your air fried lemon pepper chicken wings! Garnish with chopped parsley and lemon wedges.
- Fresh chicken wings will yield the best results.
- The best way to thaw your chicken wings is to leave them in the refrigerator overnight. Another effective method for thawing wings is to place them in cold water, changing the water every 30 minutes. It typically takes 2-4 hours for the wings to fully defrost.
- We do not recommend defrosting your wings in the microwave as it may dry out the meat and potentially make it unsafe to eat.
- If you air fry wings directly from frozen, they will have a dry texture and require a longer cooking time.
- Some lemon pepper seasonings contain salt and some do not. If you’re using a seasoning that already contains salt, especially if it’s the first ingredient listed on the label, you may be able to skip using additional salt altogether.
- If your air fryer doesn’t have a preheating option, you can set the temperature to 380°F (193°C) and then let it cook for 4-5 minutes without food.
- Preheating and thawing your chicken wings properly will yield juicier results. Based on our tests, the longer you cook your chicken wings, the drier they will become.
- It’s not ideal to wash your chicken wings as it may contaminate your kitchen.
- Chicken wings are considered white meat and should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) or higher.
- Time Saver: Skip the basting, It will taste the same with the dry rub alone.
- Wet Version: Melt ¼ cup butter in a saucepan together with 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of the lemon pepper dry rub. After air frying the chicken wings, simply toss them with the lemon pepper sauce in a large mixing bowl.
- I used a 6-quart Instant Pot Vortex Plus to test the air fryer lemon pepper wings recipe. Cooking time and temperature may vary depending on your air fryer and the number of servings being prepared. For best results, start with the lower end of the suggested cooking time.
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