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Gluten-Free Honey Garlic Chicken Wings (Air Fryer, From Frozen)

These gluten-free honey garlic chicken wings are as easy to make in the air fryer as in the oven, and they’re dairy-free and lower histamine, to boot. With a simple sweet, savory & sticky sauce, these air fryer garlic honey wings will put your local Korean fried chicken spot to shame.

About this recipe

Medium Histamine: much like my copycat General Tso’s Chicken the apple cider vinegar and coconut aminos in these honey garlic chicken wings won’t be tolerated by everyone, but both have been shown to have negligible histamine levels and will be well-tolerated by most (unlike the rice wine vinegar and soy sauce that they’re replacing!). In addition, I’ve included low histamine alternatives to make this allergy-friendly chicken dish more accessible to all.

Korean Fried Chicken Dupe: the chicken itself is deliciously crispy when prepared this way, but adding the final broiling step really brings it to the next level. Add in the balanced, sweet & savory low histamine sauce to create truly remarkable air fried honey garlic chicken wings.

Make-Ahead: the sauce freezes beautifully, and so do the fresh raw chicken wings (for instant cooking later on, though you can also cook them now and do the final broiling step once you’re ready to eat them).

Ingredients

Frozen Chicken Wings: we have been loving the fresh-frozen options from Thrive Market, but use whatever source you tolerate. Just don’t forget to split them into drums & wings, which for this recipe ended up at about 13 pieces for me.

Baking Powder: this one weird ingredient is the secret to crispy air-fryer chicken. It allegedly helps to pull moisture to the surface during the cooking process.

Local Honey: possibly the best-kept secret on a low histamine diet, honey is a fantastic way to get a bit of sweetness into your diet without going overboard. It’s also the base for this delicious sauce, and adds the stickiness that caramelizes the wings. Bonus points if it’s local honey, which has been shown to blunt the effects of environmental allergies.

Raw Garlic: using raw garlic adds an umami element to the sauce that really complements the crispy air fried honey garlic wings.

Tapioca Flour: also known as tapioca starch, this low histamine flour has a very unusual texture. It’s sort of sticky but also extremely smooth, like powdered sugar, making it perfect for blending into this gluten-free honey garlic sauce. In reality, tapioca starch is the starchy portion of the yuca root (also called cassava), known for having almost no discernable taste, making it great as a thickener. A good alternative would be arrowroot starch.

Coconut Aminos: it’s still up for debate as to the histamine impact of coconut aminos, but they are a fermented food, which is widely an automatic no-no on a low histamine diet, though they’ve been show to have little residual histamine content (if any).

How to make air fryer honey garlic wings: step-by-step instructions

Step 1. Place your frozen chicken wings in warm water to defrost for 20 minutes, if time allows. Once ready to cook, separate your wings into drum sticks and wings, and pat them as dry as possible. If you don’t have time to defrost them, plop the lump into the air fryer at 400°F (205°C) for 2 minutes, then take them out and continue.

Step 2. Place them in a ziploc freezer bag along with your salt and baking powder, and toss until well-coated. This will help the wings crisp up despite coming almost directly from the freezer.

Step 3. Once coated, add the frozen chicken wings in a single layer to the basket of your air fryer. Cook them at 400°F (205°C) for 14 minutes, flipping them halfway through (I recommend cooking them 7 minutes, then flipping and setting it for 7 more minutes).

Step 4. While the wings are frying, combine the honey, minced garlic, water, tapioca starch, vinegar, and coconut aminos in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir the mixture until well-combined, and thickened to your desired consistency (about 3 minutes, for me).

Step 5. Once the honey garlic wings have cooked their 14 minutes, toss them in half of your honey garlic wing sauce and put them back in the air fryer to cook for another 4 minutes at 400°F (205°C).

Step 6. Take the honey garlic wings out of the air fryer and toss them with the remaining sauce, sprinkle on the sesame seeds and enjoy.

Recipe notes & tips

Coconut Aminos: many people with histamine issues shy away from coconut aminos because they are fermented. But this process, unlike with soy sauces and other protein-dense sources, doesn’t affect the histamine level of coconut aminos, so they’re still generally well-tolerated. But if you really still can’t handle them, a decent substitute is 1 tablespoon coconut sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 2 tablespoons water.

Histamine & Vinegar: similar to the aminos, apple cider vinegar is often avoided by masties on principle. If you already know you can’t tolerate this, a Tablespoon of any very acidic ingredient you can tolerate would make a decent substitute, eve pomegranate juice.

Thickness of the Sauce: if your sauce ends up not thick enough, let it simmer for another couple minutes, or stir in a half teaspoon more tapioca flour. If it’s too thick then add more water by the tablespoon until it reaches your desired consistency. The more you cook the honey garlic wing sauce, however, the more jelly-like it can become.

What to serve with honey garlic wings

Homemade Honey Garlic Chicken Wings Recipe Card

As always, if you like the recipe, I really appreciate a review or comment!

Gluten-Free Honey Garlic Chicken Wings (Air Fryer)

Gluten-Free Honey Garlic Chicken Wings (Air Fryer)

Yield: 2 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Crispy, sweet & savory air fryer honey garlic wings with a salty crunch and a delectable sticky sauce.

Ingredients

For the Chicken

  • 1 1/2 pounds frozen chicken wings (split into drums & wings, about 13 for me)
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

For the Sauce:

  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons honey
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 Tablespoons water
  • 1/2 Tablespoon tapioca starch
  • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar (alt. lemon juice)
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons coconut aminos (alt. 1/2 teaspoon salt + 2 Tablespoons water)
  • 1 Tablespoon sesame seeds (optional, to top)

Instructions

  1. Place your frozen chicken wings in warm water to defrost for 20 minutes, if time allows. Once ready to cook, separate your wings into drum sticks and wings, and pat them as dry as possible. If you don't have time to defrost them, plop the lump into the air fryer at 400°F (205°C) for 2 minutes, then take them out and continue.
  2. Place them in a ziploc freezer bag along with your salt and baking powder, and toss until well-coated. This will help the wings crisp up despite coming almost directly from the freezer.
  3. Once coated, add the frozen chicken wings in a single layer to the basket of your air fryer. Cook them at 400°F (205°C) for 14 minutes, flipping them halfway through (I recommend cooking them 7 minutes, then flipping and setting it for 7 more minutes).
  4. While the wings are frying, combine the honey, garlic, water, tapioca starch, vinegar, and coconut aminos in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir the mixture until well-combined, and thickened to your desired consistency (about 3 minutes, for me).
  5. Once the honey garlic wings have cooked their 14 minutes, toss them in half of your honey garlic wing sauce and put them back in the air fryer to cook for another 4 minutes at 400°F (205°C).
  6. Take them out of the air fryer and toss them with the remaining sauce, sprinkle on the sesame seeds and enjoy.

Notes

Coconut Aminos: many people with histamine issues shy away from coconut aminos because they are fermented. But this process, unlike with soy sauces and other protein-dense sources, doesn't affect the histamine level of coconut aminos, so they're still generally well-tolerated. But if you really still can't handle them, a decent substitute is 1 tablespoon coconut sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 2 tablespoons water.

Histamine & Vinegar
: similar to the aminos, apple cider vinegar is often avoided by masties on principle. If you already know you can't tolerate this, a Tablespoon of any very acidic ingredient you can tolerate would make a decent substitute, eve pomegranate juice.

Thickness of the Sauce: if your sauce ends up not thick enough, let it simmer for another couple minutes, or stir in a half teaspoon more tapioca flour. If it's too thick then add more water by the tablespoon until it reaches your desired consistency. The more you cook the honey garlic wing sauce, however, the more jelly-like it can become.

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