Air-Fried Wings Done on the Weber Kettle in Fifteen Minutes

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Marknmd

Meat Mopper
Original poster
Jun 22, 2022
256
223
I tried vortex wings a couple weeks ago - they were okay. Wife wanted the skin to be crispier.

Then yesterday I remembered the crack in the lid method. I've heard of it before but had forgotten about it and never actually tried it. So this time I thought I'd try a more conventional indirect setup, but with a crack in the lid near the food which would force hot air into the grate area where the food was located, allowing convective hot air to blast directly into the meat, making the temp at the grate significantly hotter than it would be otherwise. I could even close off the top vent which could potentially make it even hotter. I would use a nice large charcoal basket area similar to the SnS basket size.

Here's the setup (shown after the cook). Jealous Devil lump started in a chimney, then dumped with more JD piled on top. Foil you see is to block air trying to come in from the back side of the tilted lid. All vents wide open.

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Once the lump was poured into the Weber and lid was placed with a crack, it was showing extreme heat in no time. You can see the grate temp probe is positioned right where the meat will be. I'd already seasoned the wings with a Chipotle blend dry rub. I put the wings on and set a timer for fifteen minutes. My plan was to check the chicken every fifteen mins. I only had 12 pieces which made it easy. Then placed the lid with a half inch crack on the food side. Again, the temp went screaming up almost instantly.

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That temp you see above was actually after I closed the bottom intake to about half way because it shot so high, it went to HHH on my Thermoworks Smoke. HHH on the readout is what happens when the temp exceeds 575 F. It was climbing so fast, it probably hit 650 F before I was able to calm it down. I think I need a analog dial thermometer to read higher temps.

I then closed the lid completely with top vent open to calm it down. It finally stabilized at around 520 F or so. I wanted closer to 550, so I cracked it again. Half inch crack near the food. Again the temp shot up which is when I took the above pic. I never got a chance to see what would happen if I cracked the lid with the top vent closed.

By this time the beeper was going off telling me fifteen mins had gone by and it was time to check the chicken. But I've barely had a chance to even sit down! So I open it up and the chicken is looking like it's done! How can this be? But I still had to flip them, right? So I flipped them and the down side looked just as done as the top side! Then I check them with my instant read and the chicken pieces were all reading 198-202 F. These boys are done!!!

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In summary, nice crispy wings in fifteen minutes with no need to flip the pieces. Perfect wings. I think my wife would be pleased. Happy wife, happy life. :-)

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Last edited:

masssmoke

Meat Mopper
May 8, 2016
196
164
Massachusetts
Interesting and nice job. I have been trying vortex wings and would say out of the three times I have done them only one time was good. The other times they were rubbery on the skin and the other time to avoid that issue I let them go to long and they were dried out but with crispy skin.
I might try a the charcoal bucket like you have that I got with my Weber Kettle and the crack the lid method to get the grill really hot and see if I can replicate your success.
 
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