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Hot Lemon Pepper Wings

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Hot lemon pepper wings, baked and not fried, using just a few ingredients, and ready in about 45 minutes. Crispy skin, tender meat, and delicious lemon pepper flavor.

chicken wings with lemon pepper on a wire rack.

These hot lemon pepper wings are the perfect appetizer, quick snack, or dinner. Make a large batch, a dipping sauce, and maybe a salad on the side, and you will make your family perfectly happy.

Why are they so good?

  • Peppery and lemony, crispy on the outside and tender on the inside.
  • Economical: You will only need a few simple ingredients; five, and that with counting stuff like oil and salt.
  • Quick and easy recipe: Toss the wings with the zesty lemon pepper seasoning and bake them; they’ll be ready in about 45 minutes.
  • Healthier: Baking them instead of using the deep fryer lowers fat and calories. And no messy deep-frying is always a bonus anyway.

And if you like chicken wings just as much as we do, check out the hot Honey Lemon Pepper Wings, the Cajun Wings, and Baked Curry Chicken Wings. Or learn How to Parboil Chicken Wings or cook Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Wings.

Recipe ingredients

bowls with raw wings, oil, salt, garlic powder and lemon pepper.

Wings:

  • 2 lbs (900 g) – about 8-9 whole wings or 16-18 flats (wingettes) and drumettes.
  • Getting split pieces with the tips removed (party wings) is perfect; if not, cutting them at the joint is easy.

Lemon pepper seasoning:

  • I bought an excellent coarse black pepper and lemon blend at the farmer’s market. It’s pretty hot, so that I can use it economically. I needed one tablespoon of it for making these wings, and they were hot.
  • Make sure you know your seasoning and use it according to your taste; a little more or less is OK, as long as you like it.
  • Check out this Lemon Pepper Pasta Recipe as well, it’s amazing!

Other ingredients: two tablespoons of vegetable, canola, or olive oil, one teaspoon garlic powder, and a bit of fine sea salt (or Kosher salt). Fresh parsley (optional) and lemon wedges to serve.

How to split whole chicken wings?

If they are not already split into two parts, you can do that yourself quite quickly and easily.

  • Place one whole piece on a cutting board. Hold the little drumstick in your hand and stretch the joint open. The wingette (or flat part) should still be on the work surface. Cut through the joint; you should not encounter resistance.
  • If there is any, you didn’t hit the right spot. Move the knife a few millimeters more on the right or left until you find the right place to go through the skin and between the bones quickly.
  • If they still have the tips on, remove those too.
  • The wing tip is usually removed but remove it if it’s still attached. Use the tips to make chicken stock.
collage of two pictures with one raw chicken wings with description of the parts and a women diving wings at the joint.

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Step-by-step instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a sheet pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper and place an oven-safe wire rack on top. Brush the rack lightly with oil or use cooking spray.
  • Dry wings thoroughly with paper towels
  • Season: Place them in a large bowl, rub them well with oil, add the spice mixture and stir well to coat. Place on the baking sheet or rack in a single layer.
bowl with raw seasoned chicken wings.
  • Bake for 20 minutes. Flip and roast for another 20-25 minutes until golden brown and crispy.
  • Rest for about 5 minutes and sprinkle with chopped parsley if desired. Serve with lemon wedges.
collage of two pictures of chicken wings on a baking sheet before and after cooking.

Expert tips

  • Don’t wash the chicken before cooking. The bacteria will only be destroyed during the cooking process. Cleaning the chicken will only spread the bacteria all over your sink without removing it from the meat entirely. 

The USDA – Food Safety and Inspection Service says: “Washing raw poultry before cooking it is not recommended. Bacteria in raw meat and poultry juices can be spread to other food, utensils, and surfaces. This is called cross-contamination. Rinsing or soaking does not destroy bacteria. Only cooking will destroy any bacteria that might be present on fresh chicken.”

  • When garnishing the hot lemon pepper wings, you can leave the parsley if you don’t have it. But I recommend slicing a lemon and squeezing some fresh lemon juice on the hot wings; I really love the extra flavor.
  • You can bake the wings on aluminum foil or parchment paper or use an oven-safe wire rack. I prefer the wire rack, but otherwise, parchment paper is excellent. If using aluminum foil, brush the foil generously with oil and be careful when flipping the chicken wings; they are more likely to stick to foil than to parchment paper.
golden chicken wings cooling on a wire rack.

Recipe FAQ

How to check if the chicken is done?

Use a meat thermometer or pull the meat off the bone of one larger piece, the meat should be white, and there should be no pink or red spots near the bone.

What is the proper internal temperature for chicken?

165°F (75°C).

How to make the wings crispy?

It’s easy even without baking powder or flour.
Dry the wings
really well with a paper towel. If you have the time, you can coat them with the dry rub and let them dry out some more in the fridge (in a single layer) for a few hours.
Baking them on a wire rack also helps; the heat will circulate all around them, and they will not sit in a pool of their juices.

Can I use another seasoning?

Sure, anything you like. Try Cajun seasoning, curry powder, chicken seasoning, or another spice blend.

How to store and reheat?

Refrigerate any leftover wings in an airtight container for about 3 days
Freeze for up to 3 months in an airtight container or freezer bag. Defrost in the fridge.
Reheat in the preheated oven at 350°F (180°C) for 10-15 minutes or until hot. You can also reheat them in the air fryer basket for about 3 minutes or until hot.

How to serve?

  • Appetizer: 2 lbs of hot lemon pepper chicken wings will serve 5-6 people. Serve them with a dip if you like, something like buffalo wing sauce, hot sauce, blue cheese sauce, etc.
  • The hot lemon pepper wings recipe is perfect for any game day during the Super Bowl or the football season, great for parties, barbecues, etc.
hand holding up a chicken wing showing the tender meat.

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close up golden chicken wing showing the white tender meat.

Hot Lemon Pepper Wings

Hot lemon pepper wings, baked and not fried, using just a few ingredients, and ready in about 45 minutes. Crispy skin, tender meat, and delicious lemon pepper flavor.
5 from 2 votes
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Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 341kcal
Author: Adina

Equipment

  • Baking sheet

Ingredients  

  • 2 lbs chicken wings split, 900 g, Notes 1 and 2
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil or vegetable/canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning Note 3
  • ¾ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • fresh chopped parsley and lemon wedges to serve

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper and place an oven-safe wire rack on top. Brush the rack lightly with oil.
  • Dry the wings well with paper towels.
  • Season the chicken wings: Place them in a large bowl, pour the oil on top and stir well to coat. Mix garlic powder, lemon pepper, and salt in a small bowl. Sprinkle over the chicken pieces and stir well.
  • Bake the wings for 20 minutes. Flip them with tongs and cook for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and crispy.
  • Rest for about 5 minutes and sprinkle with chopped parsley if desired. Serve with lemon wedges.

Notes

  1. 2 lbs (900 g) – about 8-9 whole wings or 16-18 flats (wingettes) and drumettes.
  2. If required, split whole wings: Place one whole piece on a cutting board. Hold the little drumstick in your hand and stretch the joint open. The wingette (or flat part) should still be on the work surface. Cut through the joint; you should not encounter resistance. If there is any, you didn’t hit the right spot. Move the knife a few millimeters more on the right or left until you find the right place to go through the skin and between the bones quickly. If they still have the tips on, remove those too.
  3. Use more or less to taste. My mixture is relatively hot, so 1 tablespoon makes the wings pretty hot. If not hot enough, add a bit more or add a pinch of cayenne pepper.

Nutrition

Serving: 4pieces | Calories: 341kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 94mg | Sodium: 533mg | Potassium: 221mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 188IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 1mg
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