Bring your favorite pub food home with these dairy-free blackened chicken wings. The drumettes and wingettes are liberally spiced to create a crispy, irresistible coating that seals in the juices while they bake. You can make them in your oven, convection, or air fryer – no deep frying required!
These Dairy-Free Blackened Chicken Wings are Simply Delicious
Blackened meats and buffalo sauce wings are often coated in butter at restaurants. But these dairy-free blackened chicken wings are both butter-free and oil-free. They’re even made without breading! Don’t worry – despite their free-from nature, everyone loves this flavorful finger food. Serve them as a football game appetizer or for relaxed Friday night fare with my Dairy-Free Cool Ranch Dip. If you want to mix things up, I have some recipe tips and options in the FAQs below.
Are these Blackened Chicken Wings Spicy?
Chipotle chili powder is typically spicy, but not as spicy as cayenne pepper. So I would call these medium spicy. You can increase the heat level with a little cayenne pepper, or reduce it by substituting a mild chili powder for part or all of the chipotle chili powder.
Is this Cajun Seasoning?
Blackened seasoning is similar to Cajun seasoning and Creole seasoning. And honestly, there are many variations of blackened seasoning. I use this name not only for the spice mix, but for the blackened effect the seasoning has when baked.
What’s Smoked Paprika?
It’s similar to regular paprika, but has a deep smoky flavor. It helps add depth to these dairy-free blackened chicken wings. Smoked paprika has become popular enough that most grocery stores offer a brand or two in the spice section. You can also order it online. In a pinch, you can substitute regular paprika, but the flavor will be a little less boisterous.
Can I Use this Spice on Other Chicken or Proteins?
You definitely can! It works well to coat chicken legs, too. For larger cuts of chicken, I would use it more like a spice rather than completely coating the chicken. The seasoning also goes well with turkey, meatier fish, and tofu if you need an option for a meat-free protein.
What are Wingettes and Drumettes?
They are really what you are eating when you typically order chicken wings. Whole chicken wings have wing tips (with no meat), wingettes, and drumettes. You can usually buy whole wings, just wingettes, just drumettes, or a combination of wingettes and drumettes at grocery stores. If your wings have the wing tips attached, remove them and then weigh out the two pounds. You can discard the wing tips or use them to make broth.
Should I Use Fresh or Frozen Chicken Wings?
You can use either, but it’s best to defrost the wings at least part way before using to help the spice mixture cling more easily.
Do You Have a Large Batch Recipe for the Seasoning?
Whether you want to scale the quantity up or down, just remember 2 parts chipotle chili powder and smoked paprika to 1 part ground cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, and salt. So if you wanted a quadruple batch, you would use 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) each of chipotle chili powder and smoked paprika and 2 tablespoons each of the remaining spices and salt.
Can I Make these Chicken Wings Lower in Sodium?
We use the amount of salt that really maximizes the flavor. The sodium number noted assumes all salt is consumed. In most cases, some of the salt isn’t eaten. But you can cut the salt in half, if needed.
Can You Prep these Dairy-Free Blackened Chicken Wings Ahead?
Yes, I would toss them with the spices and put them on the rack. Then you can put them in the refrigerator for up to one day before cooking them (as long as they are fresh wings).
Special Diet Notes: Blackened Chicken Wings
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, grain-free, nut-free, soy-free, added sugar-free, paleo, and top food allergy-friendly. It might also suit some keto diets, particularly if served with the dairy-free ranch dip.
- 1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1½ teaspoons ground cumin
- 1½ teaspoons garlic powder
- 1½ teaspoons onion powder
- 1½ teaspoons black pepper
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- 2 pounds chicken drumettes and wingettes (wing tips already removed)
- Dairy-Free Cool Ranch Dip, for serving (optional)
- Carrot sticks, for serving (optional)
- Celery sticks, for serving (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 400ºF and place a wire rack over a rimmed baking sheet.
- Place the chili powder, smoked paprika, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper and salt in a large sealable plastic bag. Seal the bag and shake until the spices are well distributed.
- Add the chicken drumettes and wingettes to the plastic bag, seal, and shake, so the wings toss around until fully coated with all seasoning.
- Place the coated chicken on the wire rack so the pieces are not touching one another.
- Bake the wings for 40 to 50 minutes or until lightly blackened and crispy on the outside.
- Serve the chicken wings with Cool Ranch Dip, carrot sticks, and celery sticks, if desired.