Reheating Boneless Wings: The Best Way To Get Juicy Tender Wings

December 24, 2022
Written by Kristy J. Norton

Whenever you have to reheat boneless wings, the rule to go by is always to keep the reheating time to a minimum. Boneless chicken wings are small and so it follows that they will lose a huge percentage of that juicy moisture and tenderness the longer they are exposed to direct heat.

I have my family and friends over every weekend and boneless wings are for all intents and purposes, the centerpiece of our lunch. Despite their mammoth appetites I always end up with enough leftover boneless wings for a least two meals so I have learned to reheat wings to perfection. 

In this article, I have broken down the various ways to reheat boneless wings so that you can avoid the problem of drying them out and get juicy tender wings as good as the fresh item. Let’s get started.

Reheating Boneless Wings

What is the Best Way to Reheat Boneless Chicken Wings?

In a Microwave

Reheating boneless wings in the microwave is not only conveniently fast but also easy. The only thing you have to be careful about is ensuring they do not become dry and lose moisture because you left them in there for too long.

If they have been sitting at room temperature and all you want is a quick nuke to warm them up then a minute or two will suffice. If they have been in the fridge, here’s what to do.

Remove them from the fridge and place them on the counter for about ten minutes to rid of the low temperature. Arrange the wings on a wide microwave-safe plate such that none is on top of the other.

In a small bowl, pour some warm water and place the bowl at the center of the bowl of wings. If this does not appeal to you then just use a spritz bottle and spray a thin film of either water or olive oil on the wings.

Cover the whole plate with a microwave food cover to prevent moisture and succulence from splashing all over your microwave and also to hold back as much moisture as possible from escaping and drying the wings.

Let the wings heat on medium-high heat for approximately 7 – 10 minutes or until you can see a fog under the food cover.

Just to be sure you are not overheating the wings you can check them at seven minutes and if they are hot enough just remove them. Use the thermometer to confirm that the internal temperature is 165 degrees Fahrenheit. If it is, dig in.

In the Oven

Heating up leftover wings in the oven is not as fast as popping them into the microwave but it is by far the best method in my experience. The wings come out so well done and evenly heated through and through that they are just like freshly made wings.

This method also allows you to reheat a large portion of wings since the oven is much bigger.

First, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper and place the wings in a single layer such that the wings are not overlapping.

Some people will forego the foil and use the bare baking sheet. However, this means the wings could stick to the baking tray which will ruin perfectly good wings and force you to scrape off bits of meat from the tray after the job is done.

Baked Boneless Wings with BBQ Sauce

Aluminum foil not only prevents this sticking but it ensures there is no direct dry heat coming into contact with your wings and charring them. It will also be handy in collecting the gravy that may seep from the wings.

If you don’t have foil paper then you can use a non-stick cooking spray. I use Happy Belly Cooking Spray. Spitz a film of this spray on the baking tray to prevent the meat from sticking to it.

Using a spritz bottle spray a bit of water or olive oil on the wings. You can also brush the wings with some butter if that is more your speed. This will prevent the wings from charring and drying out as they heat up.

Place the wings in the oven and let them heat up for 8 – 10 minutes. Halfway through that time, you can turn them over using tongs but this is seldom necessary. Wings heat up evenly quite easily and within ten minutes your wings should be evenly done.

By Deep Frying

Reheating boneless wings by deep frying them is a tricky thing to do because it is easy to wind up with tougher dried-out wings full of fat. Additionally, the extra fat content is not minimal even if you pat the wings dry afterward. 

If you want to use this method here’s what you need to do:

Heat up at least three inches of cooking oil in a heavy-base cast iron skillet if you do not have a deep fryer. Let the oil heat up to at least 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

At a lower temperature, the wings will be sitting in oil soaking up the oil for too long and when ready they will be too soggy to be palatable so for deep frying, a higher temperature is the best option.

Place the wings in the hot oil and let them fry for about two minutes before removing them. Place them on a paper towel and pat them dry to get rid of the excess oil.

Use a thermometer to ascertain that the internal temperature has reached 165 degrees. Allow the wings to cool for a while before digging in.

A sauce would be great to go along with your deep-fried boneless wings.

Deep Fried Boneless Wings with Lemon Wedges

In a Pan

Reheating wings in a frying pan is also a great way to get your snack ready in a jiffy. This is particularly useful if you only want to reheat a few pieces for a quick meal. This method also allows you to get creative since you can add some herbs and spices to enhance the flavor if so wish.

Place a heavy base frying pan on the stove and turn on the heat. 

Pour some olive oil into the pan and let it heat up. Place the boneless wings into the heated oil ensuring that all the wings rest at the bottom of the pan and on the oil.

Any wings not resting directly on the pan will take too long to heat up and in that time the wings at the bottom will be burning.

As the wings heat up, you can sprinkle some black pepper granules or any spice that you would like to enhance the flavor of the wings. Cover the wings for two minutes and turn them over to heat up the top sides.  

Sprinkle some more spices or herbs on the wings and cover them to let the flavors meld. This should take no more than two minutes.

Do not leave them for too long on the pan since the wings will likely stick and burn thus ruining your meal.

A non-stick pan would be an excellent idea for reheating wings if you have one. However, even with the non-stick pan wings will stick to the pan if left for too long which is not what you are going for.

In a Broiler

If you have a broiler or a broiling function in your oven, this is also an excellent way to reheat boneless wings and is fairly similar to oven reheating.

Preheat the broiler to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and let the interior heat up before placing the boneless wings in the broiler. 

On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil, place the wings in a single layer such that none is lying on top of the other. This is a recurrent theme. Overlapping is not recommended.

Place the wings on the broiler rack which should be no more than ten inches from the heating element and allow them to heat up for 10 – 15 minutes depending on the individual size of the wings. The larger the wings, the denser they will be so they will take longer to heat up.

Keep an eye on them to ensure they do not char and burn. Unlike the oven which creates an evenly heated cavity through convectional currents, a broiler may not heat up the wings evenly since heat pours down directly from the heating element and downwards onto the food.

For such a short cooking time, the heat may not permeate the food evenly. At the halfway mark, you must turn over the wings to allow the underside to heat up as well. I reserved my broiler for long cooking times but it works just as well for quick heating needs.

On the Grill

The option to reheat boneless wings on the grill is not a method I find particularly advisable. This is unless you are reheating them to feed a large group of people in which case it is just the best. 

When you reheat boneless wings they lose their moisture easily. On a grill, this is almost a guarantee since the wings will literary pour their moisture through the grates and become dry. If you place them directly over a flame this will happen too fast.

Barbecued chicken wings on grill

The better method would be to wrap them up in aluminum foil and place them on the grill over medium heat. Heat them up slowly and contain the moisture within the foil. This way, at least they will not lose all their succulence. This will result in incredibly juicy wings.

Allow them to heat up slowly so that the heat penetrates every one of the wings adequately enough to reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Serve the hot wings with your favorite sauce, mashed potatoes, or pasta. 

In an Air Fryer

This is another quick method to reheat your wings conveniently. If you have family and friends waiting on the wings, however, this is not a very practical method since you will have to reheat them in several batches not to mention the other chores still waiting on you.

If you are looking to make a quick snack, however, this is undoubtedly a great way to get s meal going for you and the kids.

Pop a few wings into the air fryer depending on the size. Be careful not to overcrowd the fryer basket. If you do they will not heat up all the way through. Use a spray bottle to spritz some olive oil on the wings.

Simply set the fryer to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and a time of 5 – 10 minutes. When ready, serve the crispy wings with sauce and a side of lemon rice. Enjoy!

Must I Reheat Boneless Wings?

Not at all.

It may not be necessary to reheat boneless wings if you want to make a chicken veggie salad. It is perfectly safe to eat chilled wings straight out of the fridge if the proper measures had been taken to store them safely.

As long as the fresh version had not been sitting at room temperature for more than two hours before being refrigerated, they are safe to eat.

Boneless wings can make a great addition to a vegetable salad. The chilled boneless wings may even be more delicious since the flavor and mouthfeel are maintained while they are in the fridge. Here is a simple chicken salad recipe you can put together on the go.

Simple Chicken Salad Recipe


  • 1 lb chilled boneless wings
  • 10 cherry tomatoes sliced in half
  • 1 medium-sized red onion sliced and diced
  • ½ cup feta cheese
  • 5 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 4 large leaves of lettuce
  • Black pepper
  • Salt


Put the onion in a bowl and pour in the vinegar. Let this sit for a minute before adding the tomatoes and lettuce. 

Mix these up the throw in the cheese. Split up the boneless wings into chunk-sized bits using your fingers and throw them into the bowl. Mix all these evenly through.

Drizzle some salt and pepper to taste and enjoy. It’s that simple!

How Can I Reheat Boneless Wings To Perfection?

The thing to remember with wings is that they are incredibly succulent and tender when freshly made and this moisture easily dries out or seeps out the longer the wings sit out and start to cool.

For the first two hours or while they are still hot, they are pretty safe. After that, they begin to lose moisture even soaking up the breaded crispy external layer making the whole thing soggy and unpleasant.

Moreover, the wings will become a breeding ground for bacteria the longer they sit at room temperature. If you haven’t consumed the whole batch the best course of action is to refrigerate or freeze them to be consumed at a later time.

To be on the safe side, whenever you have to reheat boneless chicken wings, ensure the internal temperature reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. At this temperature, harmful bacteria will be destroyed making the food safe for consumption.

Seasoned cooks such as myself do not need a meat thermometer but you should consider getting one if you are not experienced enough to tell whether your reheated food reached the recommended internal temperature.

I would recommend the ThermoPro Meat Thermometer. It has been my trusted partner for many years.

What is the Best Way to Reheat Breaded Chicken Wings?

Depending on how many wings you have the best way to reheat breaded wings is in the oven or in the air fryer. These two methods are the least likely to make your breaded wings soggy and unpleasant.

Deep frying breaded wings are also an option but only if that is how they were freshly prepared to begin with. Even so, the wings could end up losing too much moisture in a deep fry.

Breaded Boneless Chicken Wings

Reheating breaded chicken wings in a pan on the stove will also introduce this problem. The wings will likely also stick to the bottom and the breaded crispy layer will fall away ruining your wings.

Remove your wings from the refrigerator and set them on the counter to bring them to room temperature before popping them in the oven or the air fryer. Follow the simple instructions above and you’re good to go.

What is the Best Way to Reheat Buffalo Wings?

They are not that different from boneless wings. Buffalo wings are the actual chicken wing so they have both the bone and the chicken skin. They are also unbreaded.

Since they still have the skin, they do not readily lose as much moisture as boneless wings do so any of the methods outlined above are suitable if you want to reheat buffalo wild wings.

My recommendation would still be to use the oven method. You will get the best results.

Reheating Wings That Have Sauce

Wings that had been covered in a sauce before being stored should be reheated in the oven for the best results. 

Set your oven temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

Place your wings on the baking sheet and ensure they are not sitting atop one another. Pop the baking sheet in the oven and let the bones heat up for ten minutes. You can turn them at the halfway mark to ensure evenness.

The sauce is an extra source of moisture and the oven is the best method to ensure the wings do not get overwhelmed by moisture and become soggy and ruined. Only reheat what you are certain you can eat and finish to avoid refrigerating reheated wings all over again.

Serving Ideas For Reheated Boneless Wings

If you get it just right, there should be no notable or obvious difference between reheated chicken wings and freshly cooked wings so these serving suggestions should work in both instances.

Reheated wings pair beautifully with onion rings so give this a try.

Serve the wings with mashed potatoes or baked sweet potatoes and a marinara sauce on the side.

A side of good old fries with hot chicken wings and salsa should have you singing.

The suggestions here are totally up to you and anything you fancy as an accompaniment for chicken.

Safety Precautions

  • To keep yourself and your family safe, follow these simple guidelines to prevent foodborne illnesses.
  • Do not let freshly cooked wings sit at room temperature for more than two hours. Any unconsumed wings should be stored before this to avoid the growth of harmful bacteria.
  • Refrigerating meat after bacteria has infested the food may slow down further spoilage but will not reverse any proliferation that had already begun.
  • Do not thaw boneless chicken wings on the counter. Instead, let the wings thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating them the following day. The USDA recommends this method as the safest way to thaw cooked foods.
  • Only take out and reheat what you are certain you want to eat. Thawing wings triggers the growth of bacteria and returning them to the freezer does not reverse the process.
  • Avoid heating wings more than once. While they may be perfectly safe to consume, you cannot be sure how much bacteria had the chance to grow each time you retrieve them so you could be placing yourself and your family in danger.
BBQ Boneless Chicken Wings with Celery


How Long Can Boneless Wings Last in the Fridge?

The recommended duration for keeping cooked boneless wings in the fridge is no more than four days. Refrigeration slows down bacterial action but it does not altogether stop it. After four days bacterial growth continues spoiling the meat.

If you intend to consume the wings beyond four days, you should freeze the wings. Freezer temperatures are 0 degrees Fahrenheit. This low temperature will stop bacterial growth safeguarding your boneless wings. In the freezer, cooked wings can stay safe for at least four months.

It is important to mention however that frozen chicken when thawed and reheated will have significantly deteriorated in taste and texture.

How Should I Store Wings Before Reheating?

This will depend on how soon you intend to consume the wings. The best option would be to only prepare what you can consume at a go to avoid the need to reheat chicken wings but this is not always a possibility.

Your options are refrigeration and freezing. If you intend to consume the leftovers within four days then refrigerating them is good enough. Store leftover chicken wings in the fridge or freezer within two hours after cooking.

If more than four days will go by before you can consume boneless chicken wings then freeze them.

When placing your leftover chicken meat in cold storage, put them in Ziploc bags and rid the packaging of as much air as possible to ensure the meat has the best chance of remaining free of bacterial action.

Removing the air also prevents frozen wings from getting freezer burn which is irreversible.

What is the Difference Between Bone in and Boneless Wings?

Bone in wings are the genuine item. These are actual chicken wings and they contain the bone and the chicken skin. They are less available and cost more than boneless wings. Boneless wings on the other hand are not actual wings.

Boneless wings are made of meat obtained from chicken breasts. This meat is skinned, cut, breaded, fried, and covered in various types of sauces depending on where you buy it.

Boneless chicken wings were devised to satisfy the demand for wings that could not be met with actual chicken wings.

Bone-in chicken wings are harder to come by since a chicken can only produce two wings which is so much less than the chicken breast meat that is used to make boneless chicken wings. 

Is Reheating Boneless Wings Different From Reheating Regular Chicken Wings?

Not really. 

All the methods above can sufficiently be used to heat up regular chicken wings with excellent results. In fact, since regular wings have the actual chicken skin on them they are not easily fried out by reheating.

They are also more succulent which means they can withstand reheating in high to medium heat much better than boneless wings.

Can I Reheat Wings More Than Once?

Yes, you can.

However, you really should avoid it. Thawing kickstarts the growth and proliferation of bacteria as soon as the boneless chicken wings are retrieved from the fridge or freezer.

To reheat them, they must come to room temperature first, which facilitates microbial action.

Reheating them once, then cooling them, refrigerating, and retrieving them for another round of reheating simply means there are multiple instances for bacterial activity to occur in your meat.

While you could toss the coin by reheating them a second time, you are taking unworthy risks with your health and the health of those you are responsible for. 

How Long Do Raw Wings Last in the Fridge?

Raw wings can safely last in the fridge for one to two days. The USDA recommends that you store raw chicken in the fridge for no more than two days. If you cannot consume it within this time limit then you should store raw wings in the freezer.

Raw chicken can keep in the freezer for up to 9 months. Freezing raw wings for many months however will compromise the texture and succulence of the meat. When you finally cook it, it will not taste as good as the fresh stuff.

Raw Chicken Wings

The Takeaway

Boneless wings are both fantastic and easy to make. They can be paired with just about any dish you enjoy which is why we all love having a few of these culinary treasures in the fridge.

As far as reheating boneless wings is concerned, my recommendation would be to always go for the oven method. It is the best way to reheat leftover wings.

You are likely to end up with a batch of juicy tender reheated wings as good as the fresh item without much hassle. If you have just a few, pop them into the air fryer.

Sogginess is often the main complaint I hear about. This is largely brought on by heating boneless wings over medium-low heat for a longer time which allows the crisp exterior to soak up the juice. Heat up boneless wings fast and short for best results.

By Kristy J. Norton
I'm Kristy – a chef and connoisseur of all things BBQ! You can find me either in my kitchen (or someone else's) or at a big outdoor barbecue surrounded by friends and family. In both my professional and personal life I’ve picked up more than a few tips and tricks for turning out delicious food. I consider it a privilege to share it with others!
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