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Vortex chicken wings

Vortex Chicken Wings

  • Author: The BBQ Brothers
  • Prep Time: 3 hours
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 4 hours
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Smoked, Vortex
  • Cuisine: American


The best and easiest way to make golden brown, crispy wings at home is by using your smoker and a vortex! After you have vortex chicken wings you'll never want to mess with a fryer again!


Meat Used: 10 whole wings, cut into flats and drums with a sharp knife

Seasoning: We used the Owens buffalo wing seasoning that came with our vortex but you can use any kind of wing seasoning you want (or even our all purpose BBQ rub.)

Wood Used: One chunk of hickory wood

Grill Temperature: Vortex will create intense heat, over 550 degrees

Meat Temperature: 175 F

Smoke time: About 1 hour


  1. We are going to begin by separating 10 wings so we have the traditional “flat” and “drum." For this step make sure you have a very sharp knife just like we used for our chicken lollipops.
  2. Once the wings are separated, lay them on a baking sheet and sprinkle some wing seasoning on them. We used the Owens buffalo wing seasoning that came with our vortex but you can use any kind you want (or even our all purpose BBQ rub.) 
  3. Next, throw them in the fridge for at least 2-3 hrs, but ideally overnight. The reason we do this is because we want the salt from the seasoning to pull the moisture out of the skin. The reason we want less moisture is because we want that crispy skin that we all love from our favorite wing place.
  4. Now we get to play with our new toy! The vortex! We will place the vortex directly in the center of our grill. The set up shown in the photos of this post is for indirect, even, high heat cooking. You can use this same set up for direct, high heat searing, or you can turn it upside down for indirect low and slow cooking or for infrared cooking such as doing a rotisseree style chicken.
  5. Next. we want to start a half chimney full of hot coals and once hot, we will place them inside the vortex. What you will have is a hot coal volcano that will make the temp of your grill extremely high (mine went to over 550 degrees).
  6. Once your grill is hot, place the wings around the vortex in a circle, throw a chunk of hickory wood on top of the open vortex and close the lid for 30 min. Flip the wings and then close the lid for another 25-30 min.
  7. Boom, after about an hour you're done! The wings should have an internal temp of about 175. Take them off and you will have some golden brown, crispy wings ready to be tossed in your favorite sauce!


See post notes for 2 sauce reviews!

Keywords: vortex smoked chicken wings, smoker wings, easy smoked wings, cook out appetizer, crispy game day wings

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