This beer brine chicken is perfect for snacking on during the next football game, but they'd be excellent at a barbecue too!
I'm a big fan of cooking chicken with beer in one way or another because even though I dislike the taste and smells of beer- it does wonderful things to a good cut of meat! Even my Beer Can Chicken Recipe is a favorite around here.
Tenderizing the chicken while infusing flavors throughout the meat. Seriously, try the chicken wing brine, you'll be amazed! It has such a subtle beer taste, it's not overpowering at all in fact you can easily miss it if you aren't looking for it. But the juicy chicken meat is soooo good!
I made these beer brine chicken wings for my husband (a big chicken wing lover) in an attempt to cut down on the deli-made ones he keeps buying from the grocery store.
Unfortunately, I find myself making these beer marinated chicken wings more and more as he keeps asking when the next time I'm going to make wing is. Ha, the irony of doing this to myself.
🍯 Why This Recipe Works
- Simple ingredients. We don't need anything too fancy to make this recipe work, and that's awesome. Minimal shopping is needed.
- Easy to follow steps. There is very little hands-on work needed for this recipe, keeping it very simple and basic. This recipe would be great for beginner chefs.
- Cheap alternative. Buying chicken wings precooked from anywhere can be pricey, but making them yourself can definitely help to save a few dollars here and there. Enjoy your favorite appetizer but with a frugal twist.
Chicken wings- You will want to use some chicken wings and drummettes for this recipe. Make sure that they are thawed and not frozen.
Kosher Salt- This is a thicker grain than table salt. It will help to brine the chicken. Do NOT use table salt. The results will NOT be the same.
Beer- Use your favorite can of beer or whatever is on hand.
Optional Add-ins- You can add in stuff like whole peppercorns, whole cloves, or even fresh herbs.
For specific ingredients and measurements, please see the recipe card below.
🔪 Instructions for Beer Brine Chicken Wings
Step 1: Add the salt, brown sugar, and 1 cup of water to a small saucepan.
Step 2: Heat until the sugar and salt have dissolved. Remove from heat.
Step 3: Transfer the mixture to a large bowl with 1 cup of water. Stir to combine.
Step 4: Add in the 2 cups of beer along with any flavor add-ins (if desired).
Step 5: Place your chicken wings inside the liquid and press down to submerge.
Step 6: Cover bowl in plastic wrap and place into the fridge for 3-5 hours.
Step 7: When ready to cook, drain liquid and place chicken wings in an even layer on a foil-lined baking sheet.
Step 8: Bake at 400 degrees F for 45 minutes until cooked through. If desired, broil on high for 1-2 minutes to crisp up the chicken skin.
🍴 Recipe Tips
Making beer brined chicken is an easy recipe but does require a little planning thanks to the time it takes to marinate. I recommend not letting it rest in the mixture for more than 5 hours as it may become over-brined by that point (yes, that's a thing).
3-4 hours seems to be the best because the meat is perfectly flavored, juicy, and tender.
You should also make sure to use a beer that you actually like as the chicken wings will maintain some beer flavor and leftover chicken wings taste even more like the beer the following day.
You will know that your chicken has finished cooking properly when you can insert an instant read food thermometer into the meat and have it register as 165 degrees F. The meat and juices may still have a slight pink coloration to them but they should not look raw.
Microwave- I recommend laying chicken wings on a microwave-safe plate between two sheets of slightly dampened paper towels. Heat for 2 minutes or until warmed through. The paper towels will keep the chicken from drying out.
Oven- Preheat your oven to 350F and lay your chicken wings onto a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake for 10-20 minutes or until fully heated through and crispy.
Air fryer- Reheat chicken wings in the air fryer by laying them in an even layer in the basket and cooking at 360F for 5 minutes. You may wish to flip them over halfway so that they can cook evenly.
💭 Recipe FAQs
Brines should be left on chickens for a minimum of 1 hour, but up to 5 hours if needed. 3-4 hours is a good amount of time to let your thawed chicken wings brine.
The beer brined wings work like magic to help break down different things in the chicken meat to tenderize it to perfection. It also adds a subtle flavor and leaves the chicken extra juicy, so make sure to have some napkins handy.
No! Unless otherwise stated you should never try to rinse off a brine before baking. The brine is what makes the end results so good. To rinse it off would be undoing all the work and waiting that you JUST did.
I would recommend not adding any salty flavors to the chicken until after they've finished baking and you can safely taste one first. Then adjust to taste. The brine will leave some saltiness on the chicken already, so it's best to taste and adjust so that your chicken doesn't turn out too salty.
❤️ More Delicious Appetizer Recipes
If you tried these Beer Brined Chicken Wings, please leave a ⭐️ star rating and share your feedback in the 📝 comments section below. I would truly appreciate it!
Beer Brined Chicken Wings
- 2 pounds Chicken wings, thawed ($6.50)
- ¼ cup Salt ($0.06)
- ¼ cup Brown sugar ($0.11)
- 2 cups Water, divided ($0.00)
- 2 cups Beer ($0.92)
- In a pot on the stove dissolve 1 cup of water with salt and brown sugar. Stir as needed.
- Once dissolved, pour the mixture into a bowl with 1 cup of cold water.
- Add in the 2 cups of beer and any add-ins. Stir to combine.
- Place chicken inside bowl, and press down slightly to submerge.
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap and store in fridge for 3-5 hours.
- When ready to cook, preheat oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with foil.
- Remove chicken from bowl, and place on baking sheet in an even layer (or close to it).
- Bake for 45 minutes. If desired, broil on high 1-2 minutes after baking for a crisper skin.
- Serve warm.