Learning how to reheat wings in an air fryer is crucial if you enjoy this popular party appetizer. Reheating leftover chicken wings this way takes minimal time and effort, and they will taste just like they did when they were first cooked.
Air fryers have a unique way of cooking and reheating food. Here, we’ll look at how they produce such delicious results, along with some tips and techniques to have you air frying like an expert in no time.
Why Is an Air Fryer the Best Way to Reheat Chicken Wings?
Traditional methods of reheating leftover wings, such as using an oven, toaster oven, or microwave, deliver subpar results. What’s more, an oven takes a long time to warm up and lets off a lot of heat in the kitchen.
On the other hand, using a microwave will turn the breading of fried chicken wings soggy.
An air fryer is the best way to reheat wings because it leaves them tasting like they did when they were first cooked with minimal effort. And because of their size, they only take a few minutes to reheat.
Besides having a faster cooking time, air fryers make little to no mess, especially if you use aluminum foil or another liner for your air fryer basket or wire rack.
How to Reheat Wings in an Air Fryer
If you’re using your air fryer for the first time, read the user’s manual for your air fryer model before turning on the appliance. Different models have different settings and functions, and it is a good idea to know ahead of time what all the buttons and functions do.
Familiarize yourself with the attachments, especially the basket. I also recommend wearing oven mitts when handling the air fryer or any of its parts. While they don’t produce much ambient heat, the outside can get a little too warm for comfort.
Make sure you place your air fryer on a flat surface with enough clearance to open the door without any issues. Opening a hot air fryer door without enough clearance to safely remove its contents is never fun.
Ingredients Needed for Reheating Chicken Wings
- Wings (This one’s kind of obvious)
- Olive oil or cooking spray (optional)
- Extra sauce
- Meat thermometer
Reheating Chicken Wings in an Air Fryer
- Place the chicken wings on the counter for 10 to 15 minutes to bring them up to temperature. Make sure they stay covered.
- After a few minutes, preheat the air fryer to 375°F. Once it’s preheated, add water to the bottom if you choose.
- If you are coating the wings with extra sauce or oil, do it while the air fryer is preheating to save time.
- Once the air fryer is preheated, place the chicken wings in a single layer and seal the air fryer. Set a timer for five minutes.
- Flip the wings halfway through the cooking time.
- When the five-minute timer goes off, check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer. Chicken should be at an internal temperature of 165°F before serving.
If the wings are not at the proper temperature, keep cooking them at two-minute intervals, checking the temperature every two minutes.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!
More Tips and Tricks for the Perfect Reheated Chicken Wings
Reheating chicken wings in an air fryer is a simple process. That said, you’ll find useful tips and techniques that not only enhance the flavor of the wings but also help out in the cooking process.
1. Preheat the air fryer.
Preheating an air fryer before using it to cook or reheat food always produces the best results. Unlike a traditional oven, air fryers only take a few minutes to preheat. A preheated air fryer will cook the wings evenly and quicker than if it’s not preheated.
2. Bring the chicken wings to room temperature.
You will want to bring the wings up to room temperature before placing them in an air fryer. Doing this prevents them from becoming tough due to the sudden temperature change from the refrigerator to a preheated air fryer.
3. Use olive oil or cooking spray on the skin to keep the wings juicy.
Whether I’m reheating naked or breaded wings in my air fryer, I brush the wings with olive oil (cooking spray works, too) or place a couple of tablespoons of water in the bottom of the air fryer in a metal bowl.
This trick introduces steam, which keeps the wings moist without ruining the outside crispiness.
4. Don’t overcrowd the air fryer basket or wire rack.
Another great trick is to never overcrowd the air fryer basket. Overcrowding doesn’t allow the hot air to circulate around the wings, and they will overcook. Place the wings in a single layer in the basket or rack.
5. If the wings are coated in sauce, add a little water to the bottom of the air fryer to avoid excess smoke.
This trick is similar to smoking meat. Water adds moisture to the meat during a slow and long cooking process. In other words, the water helps to retain the moisture that is already in the chicken wings, which is how they remain moist.
6. Use a rotisserie attachment.
If I reheat wings with no sauce, I use the rotisserie attachment in my air fryer. This attachment rotates the wings in the air fryer as they reheat, so I don’t have to flip them halfway through cooking. Plus, they will cook evenly or more evenly in the rotisserie.
If I am reheating wings with heavy sauce, like in Buffalo wings, I also add some water to the bottom of the air fryer. So, even if the sauce produces smoke, the water will dissipate it.
7. Only reheat the wings that you will eat.
Reheating wings multiple times will dry them out. I always reheat wings in small batches, and when everyone is ready for seconds, I kick on the air fryer again.
FAQs About Reheating Chicken Wings in an Air Fryer
1. Can I reheat boneless wings in an air fryer?
Boneless wings can be reheated in an air fryer. You can also prep them like traditional wings. The only difference is that they only need three minutes to reheat. Like with any chicken, always check the temperature to make sure it’s 165°F before serving.
2. Can I reheat frozen chicken wings?
Reheating frozen chicken wings follows the same process as reheating Buffalo wings. They do need to defrost first. The best way to reheat frozen chicken wings is to let them set in the refrigerator overnight. Then, prep them like usual and air fry them.
3. Can I overcook chicken wings in an air fryer?
You can overcook chicken wings in an air fryer rather quickly, so it’s best to use a timer to prevent overcooking. If the wings are average-sized or bigger, start at five minutes. For smaller ones, set the timer to three minutes.
The wings need to be flipped halfway through the cooking time. That’s also a good time to take the temperature of one or two wings to get an idea of how much longer they need to cook.
4. Can I reheat sauced wings?
It’s possible to reheat sauced wings in an air fryer, but expect them to make a bigger mess. To prevent this, it’s best to use a perforated liner for easier cleanup. I also add two tablespoons of water to the bottom of the air fryer to prevent excessive smoking.
5. What is the proper way to store chicken wings?
Aside from learning how to reheat wings in an air fryer, you must also know how to properly store them in the refrigerator so that they don’t spoil.
More than anything, it is important to remember to place the wings in the refrigerator no more than two hours after they are cooked. Chicken wings will stay good for three to four days in the fridge if kept in an airtight container or plastic wrap.
Reheating Chicken Wings to Perfection
Most foodies love chicken wings. Not only are they easy to prepare and full of flavor, but there’s also no end to the flavor combinations one can come up with. The problem is that it’s easy to mess things up if you don’t know how to reheat leftover wings.
Of the many ways to reheat Buffalo wings, air frying is the most effective. It’s a simple, no-fuss method that produces the crunchy results we all want from our chicken wings.
That said, it’s not surprising to learn that this handy kitchen appliance can do so much more than just air fry. In fact, you’ll find countless air fryer recipes to satisfy your cravings. And once you master air frying, it might just end up being the only appliance on your countertop.