June 8, 2021

Rodney’s Wings

Recipe: Rodney Scott

Try Rodney’s Wings from the new cookbook, Rodney Scott’s World of BBQ.

I knew I wanted to have chicken wings on the menu and I knew I wanted to do something different from the fried wings that are on every sports bar menu from coast to coast. The obvious thing was to put them in our pits to get that flavor on them and then fry them for that wing-crispy crunch everybody loves. The first couple of times we tried it, we smoked the wings too long. They came out of the fryer dry. We finally found the sweet spot by smoking them for about 30 minutes and then chilling them until just before time to serve them. Then, after a quick fry, they’re just right. When you’re planning the timing of your meal, don’t forget that these wings need to be refrigerated for 1 hour before they are fried and served.


Rib Rub
(Makes 2 cups)

  • ½ cup Diamond Crystal kosher salt
  • ¼ cup Jesus’s Tears (aka MSG)
  • ¼ cup freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup paprika
  • ¼ cup chili powder
  • ¼ cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper

Chicken Wings

  • 2 to 5 pounds chicken wings, split into drumettes and flats (leave the wing tip attached to the flats if you choose)
  • 2 to 5 tbsp Rib Rub (1 tbsp per pound of wings)
  • 2 cups canola or other vegetable oil, for frying



Rib Rub

  1. Mix all of the ingredients and place them in an airtight container. Cover and store in a cool dry place until ready to use.

Chicken Wings

  1. Fire up your grill to between 225°F and 250°F.
  2. Pat the wings dry with paper towels and season them with half of the rib rub. Place the wings directly on the grill grate, spreading them out so they do not overlap. Close and cook the wings until the smoke and rub have rendered them a deep red color, almost maroon, about 30 minutes. Be careful not to overcook the wings or they’ll be dry after they are fried. Remove the wings from the grill, allow to cool completely, then refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  3. Add the oil to a cast-iron skillet to fill it about 2 inches deep and heat it to 375°F. Working in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan, use tongs to transfer the wings to the oil. Fry the wings until they are golden brown on both sides, 2 to 3 minutes, flipping regularly, to ensure even cooking.
  4. Use a slotted spoon or frying spider to transfer the cooked wings from the skillet to a large bowl and toss them with a few sprinkles of the remaining rib rub. Repeat with the remaining wings and serve.

Reprinted with permission from Rodney Scott’s World of BBQ: Every Day is a Good Day by Rodney Scott and Lolis Eric Elie Copyright © 2021 by Rodney Scott’s BBQ, LLC, a South Carolina limited liability company. Photographs copyright © 2021 by Jerrelle Guy. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House.