Crispy baked chicken wings are so easy to make that you will wonder why you ever fried wings in the first place!
Even with the skin, these are still considered clean eating compliant too!
Later in this post, I am going to introduce you to your new best friend…the Convection setting on the oven! Believe me when I say it WILL change your life!
Once you see just how easy and delicious these chicken wings are, they will quickly become a family favorite! They are perfect for Superbowl, Parties or just laid back nights at home!
How To Save Money on Organic Chicken
When we started eating organic, pasture raised chicken, it became more economical to purchase whole chickens and cut them up ourselves.
At first, the kids were disgusted watching me cut up whole chickens. But now they are used to it. I tried to teach them how to cut the chicken into pieces, but they refused to touch it and only wanted to watch. So that is a lesson for another day!
However, my son was eager to help me season the wings!
We use chicken breasts amazingly quickly. I mean, it can be used in almost any dish!
The chicken thighs are typically used in soups and fast weeknight meals. And we BBQ the drumsticks for the kids when we BBQ every Sunday night!
But the chicken wings? When am I ever going to cook only 2 wings? Even 4 wings would be pushing it.
So, I just put them in the freezer for another day. One day I realized that we had a bag full of chicken wings. At about that same time, the kids discovered a love of wings!
That sounds like a good thing, but it’s not…because I love wings too and now I have to share them!
We have always enjoyed roasted chicken in the oven, so I started experimenting. What we discovered was delicious crispy baked chicken wings that can be eaten fresh from the oven, or with BBQ sauce (for the kids) and hot sauce (for the adults).
The trick is using the convection setting on the oven…
The Oven Convection Setting
Have you ever noticed the convection setting on your oven? Often times, it is just an on/off button. Ours looks like this:
It is so simple to turn on and off that the kids often play with it and I don’t always know.
I had a convection oven for over 8 years before I finally figured out how to use it! The button was always there, but I thought it might have something to do with the self cleaning feature, or another feature that I cleary wasn’t using!
Back before kids….when I had time to google random things…I decided to figure out exactly what a convection oven was. It turns out it is a superhero in the kitchen!
It has an amazing way of making foods brown and crispy, and it cuts the cooking time almost in half!
Convection ovens are great when it comes to crisping foods. Think whole chickens, chicken wings (obviously!), chicken nuggets, salmon, and so on. Do you love those grocery store rotisserie chickens? Well your convection oven will give you an even better crispy, flavorful crust!
Because the convection oven is more efficient at pushing heat around the food, it cuts down on cooking times. It also means you need to drop the heat slightly to keep the food from burning.
For example, a whole roasted chicken takes about 1 hour at 400° in the traditional oven. In a convection oven, it cooks in about 40 minutes at 375°.
However, I have found that it does not work with pizza. It always ends up burning the pizza before the middle cooks. The same goes for certain cookies. While you are learning to use the convection oven, you need to keep a close eye on your food. It can burn quickly.
But trust me when I say that the learning curve is worth it! You will be making sure every oven you have the future has teh convection feature!
Oh, and the best part? You don’t have to preheat the oven…you’re welcome 😉
Sea Salt Chicken Seasoning
One of the best tricks when it comes to eating healthy is to learn to rely on herbs. Herbs are an easy way to add flavor to a dish without adding calories or processed foods.
Chicken wings are no exception! Below, I am sharing my favorite sea salt blend (it fits in to clean eating too!) If you want to make your own blend, just use a base of sea salt and add any herbs and seasonings that you have on hand!
Salt blend for the Best Baked Chicken Wings:
- 2 Tbsp Sea Salt
- 1 tsp Dried Chopped Onions
- 1/4 tsp Dried Rosemary
- 1/4 tsp Garlic Powder
- 1/8 tsp Ginger
- Fresh Black Pepper
Mix all ingredients well.
Here are a couple other ideas to try:
Salmon – Sea Salt and Dill
Beef – Sea Salt, Dried Onions, Garlic, Ginger and Fresh black pepper
Beef #2 – Sea Salt, Oregano, Basil, Garlic and Paprika
How Long To Bake Chicken Wings?
Chicken wings typically take about an hour in the oven. In this recipe we use the convection setting on the oven, which cuts off about 20 minutes.
We start with at 450° for 10 minutes to start the browning. Before it starts burning, we drop the temperature down to 350° for the remaining 15 minutes.
Just wait until you see how crispy they get!
Pasture Raised Chicken
One last note before we get to the recipe. If it is in your budget (you may be surprised to find that it is!), look into purchasing pasture raised chicken.
Not only are the chickens happier and have a much more humane life, but they also have nutritional benefits. They have higher concentrations of Vitamin A and E and Omega 3 fats.
Organic chicken breast at Trader Joes is $5.99 per pound. It isn’t necessarily pasture raised, just organic. At Crowd Cow, I typically pay about $12 per pound. However, drumsticks start at $7 per pound…that is just one reason I started cooking with drumsticks and thighs more often!
If you buy the whole chicken from Crowd Cow, it is closer to $8 per pound ($20 per chicken). Then you can cut it up yourself. While you are at it, teach your kids how to cut up a chicken. It’s a life skill they could use forever!
Kids Cooking Classes – Clean eating & Kid Friendly too
Baked chicken wings are the perfect way to show your kids that they can make and enjoy healthier versions of restaurant style foods without compromising flavor! In addition, they will learn the following:
- How to use the Convection Oven feature
- How to bake Chicken wings
- How to make seasoning salt
- How to create a crispy chicken that could be the base for multiple dishes, such as hot wings, BBQ wings or teriyaki wings
- How to be careful when putting pans in the oven and taking them out
Looking for an online cooking class designed to teach kids real kitchen techniques? check out our Apricot Kids course. Click HERE for the Deets!
Looking for more clean eating recipes to serve with the wings? Try these:
- 4 Pounds Chicken Wings, If using frozen, defrost first
- 2 Tablespoons Sea Salt
- 1 teaspoons chopped onions, dried
- 1/4 teaspoon Rosemary
- 1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder
- 1/8 teaspoon Ginger, dried
- Preheat oven to 400° and turn on your convection fan
- In a small bowl, mix the Sea Salt, Onion, Rosemary, Garlic Powder and Ginger. Mix well
- Place the chicken wings on a lined cookie sheet. Try to keep the wings from touching
- Evenly sprinkle half the salt mixture over the chicken wings. Turn them over and sprinkle the remaining salt mixture
- Place the wings in the oven for 10 minutes.
- Drop the oven temperature to 350° and cook for an additional 15 minutes
- Once chicken wings are brown, remove and let sit for 5 minutes
- Serve and enjoy!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 6 people
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 368Saturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 126mgSodium: 2452mgCarbohydrates: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 30g