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  • Writer's pictureRita Winthrop

Sweet + Sticky Grilled Chicken Wings

Hey guys. How was everyone’s 4th? Ours was filled with cramming in this bathroom renovation which is basically done. It’s kind of wild to think that just like that we now have a fully functioning bathroom. This afternoon I’ll be doing the touch up paint and moving all of our things back in there. Just a few things left like extra trim details, a back splash and waiting for our new shower curtain and bathmat to arrive.

What does this have to do with grilled chicken wings you might ask? Well, not much. Other than the fact that we’ve been working like crazy people on this, and I haven’t had much free time to write, let alone recipe test. It’s also been so crazy hot and humid, and I think I’ve literally grilled every single night because the idea of making it any hotter in my house is ludacris. These chicken wings though – were so good that I made them twice in the matter of 3 days – yes, that means I made them, made something else the next night, and the Frank requested I make them again the following night. They’re also so wildly easy and the ingredients for the marinade are likely sitting right in your fridge right now.

The first time that I made them I did both wings and thighs – the second time I just stuck to wings, mostly due to the fact that their cooking times are different. However, you can use this marinade on both, or even chicken breasts if you didn’t want finger food. I let these marinade overnight, but you could also just marinade for 30 minutes as long as you’re diligent about basting while grilling.

These wings are sticky, sweet and finish with a hint of heat, and the char from the grill really brings out an amazing smoky flavor. Here’s how to make them.

Take your wings and place them into a large bowl. Add in your favorite barbecue sauce, tamari, sriracha, rice vinegar and maple syrup. Give it a good stir and cover the bowl. Allow to marinate as long as you can – I’ve done as long as 24 hours. And yes, that’s it.

When you’re getting ready to cook the wings, turn on the grill to high heat at first. You’ll lower the temperature to medium as you’re putting the wings on the grill. Lay them onto the heat, skin side down first. The most labor intensive part about this recipe is basting and flipping them so frequently. Because of the sugar content in the maple syrup and BBQ sauce, they can burn quickly (although it’s a good tasting char!) so you’ll want to keep an eye on them.

After about 5 minutes you’ll want to flip the wings, and baste. Continue basting and flipping, keeping the heat to medium, even a medium low if you find that they are cooking too fast. After about 25 minutes these babies should be cooked through to about 165-180 degrees F (that’s the safe temperature to eat poultry) I love using my digital thermometer to check each one just to be sure. I remove from the heat as they’re coming to temperature.

You certainly could dip these into some dressing if you really wanted to, but honestly, they are pretty kick ass on their own.

Sweet + Sticky Grilled Chicken Wings

Prep Time: 10 minutes plus at least 30 minutes to marinate (the longer the better)

Cook Time: 25-30 minutes


  • 1 lb chicken wings and/or 4-5 bone-in chicken thighs

  • ¼ cup your favorite BBQ sauce

  • 3 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup

  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar

  • 1 tablespoon sriracha


  1. Add all ingredients into a large bowl and mix. Allow to marinate for as long as possible, at least 30 minutes.

  2. Turn on grill to high heat. Allow to come to temperature for about 7-9 minutes.

  3. Place wings or thighs, skin side down and lower temperature to medium heat.

  4. Baste wings and flip about every 5 minutes until inside temp reads between 165-180F.

  5. Remove from heat and eat hot.



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