Lemonade Chicken Wings Recipe

A lemon juice and hot sauce brine, combined with an additional buttermilk brine, followed by a light batter, make these the most moist, flavorful, and crispy chicken wings you could ever dream of.
September 10, 2020, 11:00am
Photo by Farideh Sadeghin

Serves  4
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 2 ½ hours (2 hours of brining)


12 wings (about 2 pounds|1 kilogram)
½ cup|125 ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ cup|125 ml hot sauce
¼ cup|60 grams grams plus 2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons granulated garlic
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons onion powder
1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
4 cups|1 liter buttermilk
1 cup|60 grams all-purpose flour
¼ cup|50 grams cornmeal
2 ¼ teaspoons baking powder
2 ¼ teaspoons cornstarch
canola oil, for frying
1 lemon



  1. Combine the lemon juice, hot sauce, ¼ cup salt, the granulated garlic, 1 tablespoon sugar, the onion powder, cumin, and 1 quart water in a large bowl. Whisk together until combined. Add the chicken and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. Transfer the chicken to a clean bowl and cover with buttermilk and refrigerate for another hour.
  3. In a baking dish, combine the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and cornstarch.
  4. Heat 2-inches oil in a large heavy-bottomed saucepan until a deep-fry thermometer reads 325°F. Remove the chicken from the buttermilk and dredge in the dry mix. Let sit for 10 minutes on a rack fitted over a baking sheet.
  5. Meanwhile, mix the remaining 2 tablespoons salt and the sugar together in a small bowl. Zest in the lemon and set aside until ready to use.
  6. Working in batches, fry the chicken until cooked through and crisp, or until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part reads 165°F, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined baking sheet and sprinkle with the lemon pepper seasoning, then serve.

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