Ever wondered what to do with turkey wings? Sure you can turn the meat into mince but there’s just too much flavor to pass up on this wing goodness. Here’s a delicious turkey wings recipe with the use of a slow cooker.
We often hear of chicken wings and we actually love eating them. They’re often breaded and then deep-fried to a crisp. Later on, these crispy chicken wings are glazed with the famous buffalo sauce of spiciness and tang. We dip this wonderfully glazed chicken wing into a bowl of bleu cheese sauce. After that, we’re extremely happy with that addicting dish and a bottle of beer.
But what about the wings of other birds that we love to eat? We have duck, goose, quail, and turkey also. What do we do with the wings of those birds? With turkey, we often just see it in cold cut meat form, roast form, whole deep-fried form, turkey breast, turkey thigh, ground turkey, and that’s about it. What about the wings?
We could also utilize the wings of the turkey and turn it into something absolutely delicious. However, this is the part where it’s a little tougher than most. This bird is bigger than chicken so the meat tends to be a little less tender.
The answer to that question is a super delicious recipe for slow-cooked turkey wings.
Are turkey wings better than chicken wings?
Turkey in general is the healthier choice because it contains fewer calories compared to chicken. Chicken breast is packed with protein and it is relatively lower in calories compared to its other meat counterparts like pork and beef.
The upper part of the chicken is considered white meat and the lower part is considered dark meat.
With turkey, only the breast area is considered as white meat and the rest, dark meat.
If this is solely based on taste preference, the taste of turkey wings has a lot more character because it is a red meat. If you want your wings to taste a little bit more subtle, have chicken wings instead of turkey wings.
Why are my turkey wings chewy?
Since turkey wings get a whole lot more action than chicken wings, it tends to be tougher. If you do not cook your turkey right, there’s a tendency that it may dry out and become more chewy, just like with beef or pork.
In order to make your turkey meat a little bit more tender, you have to cook it properly and this is exactly why we’re serving you a turkey wings recipe cooked using a slow cooker.
Why is my turkey always dry?
Turkey has more dark meat than white. Dark meat has more connective tissues meaning that it takes longer for them to break down and become more tender. By the time the dark meat sections of the turkey are cooked, the white meat has turned dry.
You could use some ways to prevent this like bringing. Brining helps keep the moisture of the turkey while cooking. It’s also important to follow the proper time and temperature control while cooking.
- Turkey Wings
Turkey wings aren’t too easy to find compared to the other cuts of turkey. Turkey is often sold whole, minced or just sold as breasts. If you are able to find turkey wings at the butcher’s, grab some and bring them home to cook this beautiful dish.
- Salt and Pepper
Use rock sea salt pepper and fresh ground black pepper.
- Cooking Oil
It’s good to use a neutral oil for this recipe. We like using vegetable or canola oil for this recipe.
- Sherry Wine
Any brand of sherry vinegar will do. This is to balance the flavors in this recipe and help cook the turkey better in the slow cooker.
- Soy Sauce
Use low sodium soy sauce for this recipe since we will be adding plenty of other flavors to the dish.
- Light Brown Sugar
Brown sugar isn’t to make this dish so sweet but to balance the many flavors into it. If you don’t have light brown sugar, any form of brown sugar would do.
- Sesame Oil
Sesame oil adds delicious oriental flavor into the dish.
Make sure that you use fresh scallions for this recipe. Chop the sweet spot between the white and green part.
Minced the garlic cloves well.
Make sure to use fresh ginger for this recipe as ginger powder won’t really bring out the flavors that we need ginger to do in this recipe.
A cinnamon bark would do for this recipe.
Make sure that the anise pod you will be using is fresh and not too old. Old anise pods tend to have added flavor and aroma that isn’t so desirable.
- Red Pepper
Red pepper flakes should be used for this recipe rather than fresh red pepper.
- Rice Vinegar
Rice vinegar doesn’t serve the same purpose as the sherry vinegar in the recipe. This flavors the sauce while the sherry vinegar helps break down the connective tissues of the turkey meat in the slow cooker.
- Sesame Seeds
Remember to toast your sesame seeds to release the oils and aroma of the seeds.
Tips and Tricks
- Make sure you follow the correct cooking time for the turkey
We often think that some long amount of time is close to perfect when cooking something in the slow cooker. What we don’t take into account is that the amount of time indicated in the recipe for slow cooking actually plays a huge part in brewing the flavors and tenderizing the meat.
- Do not use very old spice pods
In this recipe, we will be using a lot of spices in their whole form. In order not to get those funky smells and tastes from stale spices, make sure the spices aren’t expired or too old.
How to make turkey wings in slow cooker
Slow cooker turkey wings are quite easy to make but they take some time to cook.
First, make sure all your ingredients are well prepared.
Pat the wings dry with paper towels. Season the wings with salt and pepper.
In a skillet, heat up 1 TBSP of oil over moderate high heat. Brown the turkey wings for 7 minutes each and place in the slow cooker.
Add the sherry wine to the skillet and reduce for up to 1 minute. Scrape down the browns on the side of the pan and pour the wine mixture into the slow cooker together with the wings.
In a bowl, combine the soy sauce, brown sugar, and sesame oil. Pour the soy sauce mixture over the turkey and then add the chopped scallions on top together with the garlic, ginger, cinnamon stick, anise pod, and pepper flakes. Cover the slow cooker and cook for 7 hours on low.
Preheat the broiler. Cover the oven-safe rack with aluminum foil to make cleaning a lot easier after use. Arrange the turkey wings on the rack. Strain the sauce.
Brush the sauce onto the chicken wings. Broil with a distance of 4” from the heat for 8 minutes, rotating the rack to even out the cooking. Broil until the turkey wings start to crisp.
Whisk the rice vinegar into the remaining sauce and transfer the wings to a serving platter. Sprinkle some chopped scallions and toasted sesame seeds over the wings.
What to serve with turkey wings
This particular recipe for slow cooker chicken wings is oriental in flavor. Although they’re perfect to eat with your hands, they’re also very tasty with a bowl of steamed rice.
You can have these turkey wings with potato crisps, lime wedges, dry noodles, and bread. They’re so much you can pair these wings with and it’s ultimately up to you how you’d want to serve it.