In our house, Friday nights have always been about no-nonsense, minimum preparation food. And these sticky chicken wings with a soy and honey glaze are exactly that. Juicy and succulent, spiced up with a hint of chilli, they will have you licking your fingers and reaching for ‘just one more’.
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Sticky chicken wings
Back in the day when I was working at a full-time job, and having to come home and feed the family every night of the week, I very quickly decided that Friday nights would be easy, pre-cooked, pre-frozen dinners.
If it wasn’t ready-made and in the freezer then we weren’t eating it!
I’d freeze leftovers during the week (bolognese sauce, curry, meatballs and stews). I’d even freeze left-over pasta and rice. And on Friday night we’d whip something out of the freezer, set the microwave into action, and have a meal on the table in 15 minutes or less.
My one concession to Friday cooking was sticky chicken wings. On Saturdays when I did my shopping, I’d often pick up a pack of chicken wings and pop them in a freezer bag, complete with soy and honey marinade, ready to be taken out and baked when needed.
This was my favourite Friday supper – sticky chicken wings – served with crusty bread coated in garlic butter, with a sliced tomato on the side. I don’t know what it is about chicken, garlic bread and tomato, but they seem to go so well together. A slice of garlic bread, topped with fresh tomato and a mouthful of juicy chicken is my idea of heaven.
OK – so they do take 30 minutes in the oven, but as they are pre-prepared and marinated, there is not much work involved.
And while they are in the oven you’ll have time to enjoy a glass of your favourite tipple! A great start to the weekend.
What you will need
You will probably find the easiest way to joint the chicken wings is with a pair of kitchen shears. Failing that you can use a sharp knife and a chopping board.
You will also need a mixing bowl large enough to hold the marinade and the chicken wings. I like these bowls because they come with lids so you don’t have to mess about with plastic wrap.
For baking the chicken wings you will need a large roasting tray or baking dish which I always like to line with baking parchment or tin foil to make washing up afterwards easier. This roasting tin comes with a wire rack so if you prefer to keep the wings out of the marinade while they are baking you can just arrange them on the rack.
**You can get the complete list of ingredients and full instructions on how to make these sticky chicken wings on the printable recipe card at the end of this post**
This recipe will make enough chicken wings for 4 people.
Chicken wings – snip off the wing tips and either discarded them or keep them for making chicken stock. The remaining piece of the wing can be left whole or separated into two pieces by cutting through the joint between the drumette and the flat part or ‘wingette’.
Olive oil – adding a small amount of olive oil to the marinade means you don’t have to use any oil when you are cooking these wings.
Honey – this adds a sweet stickiness
Soy sauce – I use dark soy sauce because I find the light soy sauce to be too salty. If you do use light soy sauce you may find that you don’t need to add any extra salt.
Ginger – you can peel and grate a thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, or do as I do and use ginger paste from a jar.
Garlic – once again I use ready-crushed garlic from a jar. If you prefer to use fresh garlic it should be finely minced.
Chilli flakes or chilli paste. This is optional – if you like a bit of heat then add chilli to your own taste, otherwise leave it out.
Salt and pepper – to taste.
What to do
Combine the marinade ingredients in a large bowl.
Add the pieces of chicken wings to the marinade and stir well to coat each piece of chicken. Cover the bowl and leave it in the refrigerator to marinate for half an hour, giving it a stir after 15 minutes.
Arrange the chicken wings skin-side down in a single layer in a baking tray lined with baking parchment. If you prefer you could use a tray with a rack and arrange the chicken on the rack. Do not tip the marinade into the chicken.
Bake the chicken wings for 15 minutes in a preheated oven (200C / 400F). Remove the wings from the oven and turn them over so they are skin-side up. Spoon one or two tablespoons of marinade over the chicken and return the dish to the oven for a further 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes the chicken should be fully cooked with a crispy skin. Cooked chicken should register 74C / 165F on a digital probe thermometer.
Transfer the chicken wings to a serving dish, garnish with chopped parsley or sesame seeds, and serve hot with slices of garlic bread and a tomato salad.
Leftover marinade makes a tasty dipping sauce. Pour the leftover marinade, along with the cooking juices, into a saucepan. Combine one to two teaspoons of cornflour (or cornstarch) with one to two tablespoons of cold water and stir it slowly into the marinade over a gentle heat until the marinade thickens. You may not need all the cornflour mixture.
Pour the thickened marinade into a small bowl and serve with the chicken.
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Sticky chicken wings FAQ
You can freeze the wings before cooking them (provided the chicken wings have not been previously frozen). Tip the chicken wings and marinade into a large strong plastic bag or other suitable container and freeze for up to 3 months.
To use, allow to defrost in the refrigerator and then cook for the times and temperature given in the recipe.
These wings are delicious either hot or cold. You can store the cooked chicken (once it has cooled to room temperature) in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
You may like to try the dipping sauces from one of these recipes:
Crispy air-fryer chicken wings with blue cheese sauce
Crispy chicken wings with barbeque sauce
A chicken wing has three different parts:
– the wing tip, which is mostly bone and cartilage and which is normally discarded or used to make stock.
– the drumette – which resembles a mini drumstick and which has only one piece of bone running through it.
– the wingette – sometimes called the flat – which has two bones running through it.
The drumette normally has a higher proportion of meat, whereas the wingette has more skin.
Save for later
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Other Friday night recipes
I like to prepare and freeze crispy orange chicken along with a container of orange sauce. Then on a Friday night, I can just take the chicken out of the freezer, pop it onto a baking sheet and allow it to bake for 15 minutes while I defrost the sauce. Warm up a container of frozen Chinese Egg Fried Rice, and you have a delicious Chinese meal faster than you could order from the takeaway.
Peri peri chicken livers freeze like a dream. I always make a double batch and freeze half, then when I don’t feel like cooking I just defrost and warm the livers, and pop a couple of bread rolls in the oven to crisp.
I always keep a batch of chilli bolognese sauce in the freezer. It’s a great standby for a lazy supper. The spaghetti cooks in the time that the bolognese sauce is being defrosted and warmed, so you have a quick supper in the time it takes to boil a pot of pasta.
I love to buy a rack of uncooked pork spare ribs from my local supermarket, get them home and separate them into individual ribs. Then I pop them in a freezer bag with a homemade marinade. For a quick meal, just take them out of the freezer, defrost and bake. Easy!
And of course, don’t forget the obligatory Friday night homemade crispy potato fries.
Sticky Chicken Wings with a soy and honey glaze
(Click the stars to rate this recipe)
- 2 lb / 1 kg chicken wings tips discarded and wings separated into two pieces
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 tablespoons runny honey
- 4 tablespoons dark soy sauce
- 1 inch piece ginger – grated
- 2 cloves garlic – finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon chilli flakes or to your own taste
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Chopped parsley or sesame seeds for garnish
- Pre-heat the oven to 200 °C / 400°F
- Chop the tips off the wings and discard2 lb / 1 kg chicken wings
- Cut the wings into two pieces through the joint
- Combine the remainder of the marinade ingredients into a bowl and toss in the chicken pieces, making sure each piece is nicely coated2 tablespoons olive oil, 4 tablespoons runny honey, 4 tablespoons dark soy sauce, 1 inch piece ginger – grated, 2 cloves garlic – finely chopped, 1 teaspoon chilli flakes, Salt and pepper to taste
- Cover the bowl with cling film and leave in the fridge to marinate for half an hour or so
- Place the chicken wings skin-side down onto a baking sheet that has been lined with baking parchment.
- Bake for 15 minutes then turn them over, baste with 2 tablespoons of leftover marinade and bake for another 15 minutes until they are nicely golden brown and sticky
- Serve with a fresh green salad, and slices of garlic bread.
To use, allow to defrost in the refrigerator and then cook for the times and temperature given in the recipe. Store cooked chicken wings for up to to days in a covered container in the refrigerator.
I am not a nutritionist. The nutrition information has been calculated using an on-line calculator, and is intended for information and guidance purposes only. If the nutrition information is important to you, you should consider calculating it yourself, using your preferred tool.
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