Making Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken Wings is an easy recipe that's super flavorful. If you love hot wings, this will be your new go-to recipe for spicy chicken wings. They are juicy, addicting & so tender they fall off the bone.
This electric pressure cooker chicken wing recipe is to die for. Just a few steps and set the Instant Pot and you have the best spicy wings. Enjoy them sauced or take the extra step for a crispy skin finished in the oven. Like my Hot Honey Lemon Pepper Wings, they are spicy & juicy.
Enjoy as a snack or appetizer. These buffalo wings are perfect for any game day, Super Bowl party, birthday, event, or holiday. Make it a meal and serve them with air fryer fries or sweet potato fries.
- What to Love about this Recipe
- Ingredients for Buffalo Chicken Wings
- Difference Between Wings, Wingettes & Drumettes
- Secret to the Best Instant Pot Chicken Wings
- How to Make Instant Pot Chicken Wings
- Storing & Reheating Buffalo Chicken Wings
- Substitutions & Variations
- What to Serve with Chicken Wings
- More Spicy Chicken or Wing Recipes
- Instant Pot Chicken Wings
What to Love about this Recipe
Here are all the reasons to love this recipe.
- Quick & easy recipe
- Keto, low-carb, gluten-free, & diabetic-friendly
- Crispy & crunchy skin
- Tender juicy meat that falls off the bone
- No breading, flour, or coating
- Easy recipe to double, triple, or make a lot for a crowd.
Ingredients for Buffalo Chicken Wings
This recipe only calls for a few ingredients. Besides the chicken wings, here is what you need to make spicy buffalo wings in the Instant Pot. Use drummettes, wings, or flats - all work well.
- Chicken Wings - defrosted or fresh drummettes & flats work just fine.
- Frank's Red Hot Original Hot Sauce - the best buffalo sauce is this classic store-bought favorite.
- Salted Butter - for that ultimate buttery sauce flavor.
- Apple Cide Vinegar - a punch of flavor & helps with that tender & moist chicken meat.
- Cayenne Pepper - extra spice.
- Salt & Pepper - season to taste.
See the recipe card for the amounts & full instructions.
Difference Between Wings, Wingettes & Drumettes
What I made with this recipe is what is technically called wingettes and drumettes, not a full chicken wing. But the consensus at home and in restaurants we all seem just simply call them wings. Here is more information on Chicken Wings vs Wingettes.
Secret to the Best Instant Pot Chicken Wings
The key to this recipe is the liquid that the chicken is cooked in. Most instant pot recipes call for the chicken to be cooked on a trivet above water. Yes with just water. My recipe layers the flavors in every step of the cooking process.
To make the chicken more distinct, these wings are cooked in a vinegary buffalo liquid that helps infuse flavor deep into the meat. This is so much better than simply adding the sauce only at the end.
How to Make Instant Pot Chicken Wings
It is as easy as 1 -2 - 3, to make chicken wings in the Instant Pot. The pressure cooker makes it fast & easy to have tender chicken wings.
- Season the Chicken Wings
- Pressure Cook the Wings
- Crisp & Sauce the Chicken Wings
1 - Season the Chicken Wings
Pat dry your chicken pieces and season liberally with salt and pepper.
The secret to making the best pressure cooker chicken wings is the cooking liquid. This stuff is liquid gold!
To begin, mix together in a pourable bowl or pyrex measuring cup the melted butter, apple cider vinegar, cayenne pepper, hot sauce, and water.
2 - Pressure Cook the Wings
Add the liquid and the chicken to the Instant Pot. Secure and lock the lid. Make sure the valve is set to sealing and is closed.
Set the Instant Pot to Manual for 5 minutes. The Instant Pot will say ON until it reaches pressure. Once it comes to pressure the 5 minutes will count down.
Once it beeps at 5 minutes, let the Instant Pot release pressure naturally for 10 minutes. After the clock reaches 10 minutes, move the valve carefully open using a wooden spoon or long utensil to release any remaining pressure.
The wings will be done and ready for the next step.
3 - Crisp & Sauce the Chicken Wings
There is one more step to perfect these wings. Remove the chicken wings from the Instant Pot and place them on a baking sheet. Crisp them up under the broiler on low, rotating as you cook to ensure all sides get golden. The skin will crisp up and caramelize the sauce that has been absorbed into every piece of chicken.
Time to heat things up! The final step is to melt the additional butter in a microwave-safe bowl and add ¼ cup of hot sauce. Add the wings then toss with a set of tongs. You can also serve it without the additional sauce for a mild version that even my kids like.
Storing & Reheating Buffalo Chicken Wings
Leftover wings keep for up to 3 days in the refrigerator. Store them in a container with an air-tight lid or in a Ziploc bag.
Reheat or enjoy cold for a picnic lunch. Warm up leftover wings in the oven for 10 minutes at 400°.
Substitutions & Variations
Here are some additional recipe ideas. Try these out to make it what you need based on lifestyle, dietary, & allergies you may have.
- Mild - skip the last step of additional sauce for less heat
- Butter & Cheese - instead of hot sauce at the end, add parmesan cheese to the melted butter & toss to coat
What to Serve with Chicken Wings
I recently had these with the pickled vegetables for a spicy & sour combination that is amazing. I also suggest serving these with my homemade ranch dressing. Or try one of these sides that go well with chicken wings.
Without breading, these wings are low-carb and a keto diet dream. There are almost zero carbs in this recipe. For a 6-ounce serving or ⅛ of this recipe, these chicken wings have 376 calories, 18g fat & .1 carbs.
When cooking the wings from frozen, you will need to set them for a longer time on the Instant Pot. So instead of 5 minutes on Manual, set it for 15 minutes on Manual. Still, let it release pressure naturally for 10 minutes afterward.
Reheating leftovers is so easy. My favorite way is to reheat wings in the air fryer.
This recipe is specific for making chicken wings in an electric pressure cooker. Try my other recipe for how to deep fry chicken wings if you want to make them that way instead.
Product Recommendations for this Recipe:
Instant Pot Chicken Wings
- pressure cooker
- 3 pounds chicken wings / drummettes
- ¾ cup water
- ¼ cup hot sauce
- 2 TB apple cider vinegar
- 4 TB salted butter melted
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- salt & pepper
- ¼ cup additional hot sauce
- Combine cooking liquid ingredients together – water, hot sauce, AC vinegar, 2 TB melted butter and the cayenne pepper. Pour into the insert of your Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker.
- Season chicken thoroughly with salt and pepper. Add to the pot.
- Lock and seal the lid. Close the steam valve on the lid. Select Manual and press the up or down arrows to set the Instant Pot to 5.
- It will take about 10 minutes to come to pressure. Once it does it will count down the 5 minutes. After it counts down the Instant Pot will beep. At this point let the pressure release naturally by keeping the lid locked and the valve sealed until the clock counts back up to 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes, open the steam valve carefully with a wooden spoon or long utensil. Remove the chicken wings with tongs and place on a baking sheet.
- Place under a low broiler and rotate to brown and crisp up all sides.
- While crisping, in a large bowl combine the other 2 TB of melted butter and more hot sauce – to your taste. I use usually about another ¼-1/2 cup at this point for all the wings.
- Once crispy toss wings in the butter and hot sauce mixture.
- Serve with ranch or blue cheese dressing, raw vegetable sticks or coleslaw.
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 18.4g||24%|
|Saturated Fat 7.1g||36%|
|Total Carbohydrate 0.2g||0%|
|Dietary Fiber 0.1g||0%|
|Total Sugars 0.2g|
|Vitamin D 4mcg||20%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.|