The Absolute Best Chicken Rub for Smoking {Gluten Free, Allergy Friendly}

I recently decided to try smoking chicken wings for the first time on a whim, and believe me, it was a game changer.  This is how I came up with the best chicken rub for smoking, and I’ll never go back to wings any other way again!

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When you think about a smoked chicken wing rub recipe, you really need to think about the flavor you want.

To me, I want my wings to taste like BBQ, and BBQ to me means a slightly sweet yet smoky flavor.

best gluten free chicken rub for smoking

The best dry rub for wings could not be simpler, and chances are you already have everything you need on hand to make it.

The best part about this smoked chicken wing rub recipe is that because it is so simple it is gluten free, dairy free, and allergy friendly.  If you have onion and garlic allergies like me, you have found the right rub for chicken!

What’s In The Best Chicken Rub for Smoking?

You may be wondering what goes into a rub for smoking chicken.  I like to keep it simple.

smoked chicken wing rub recipe

Salt and sugar.  That’s it!  

Now if you have ever worked with any BBQ rubs before, you are probably used to much more salt.  As a general rule I don’t use a lot of salt in cooking because quite honestly, you just don’t need it.  Sure, it is a bit of adjustment if you are used to alot of salt in your diet, but you won’t miss it at all after very long.

The truth of the matter is smoked chicken wing rub does not need that much salt at all.  Just a tiny bit to help the skin get nice and quickly and give the flavor of your wings some more dimension.

These wings are beyond perfect all alone, but you can also serve them with some sauce for dipping, like my homemade BBQ sauce.

If you want to smoke a whole chicken, or pieces of chicken, this rub also works great on any kind of chicken at all.

What Temp to Smoke Chicken?

This is really a two pronged question I get asked quite a lot.

First of all, we want to smoke our chicken to an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.  This is just good food safety, as mentioned by the FDA and the general cooking temperature of chicken.

As for what temperature to smoke chicken at for your grill temperature, I like to smoke my chicken at 225 F.  Most people say somewhere between 200 F and 225 F.  

Especially when it comes to chicken wings I like to smoke them at the 225 F temperature to help the fat render out of the skin, and help the skin get nice and crispy, not chewy.

best dry rub for wings

The key to these delicious melt in your mouth chicken wings is definitely low and slow, they take about two hours and are worth the wait!

Yield: 8 Servings

The Best Chicken Rub for Smoking {Gluten Free, Allergy Friendly}

best chicken rub for smoking gluten free

This is the absolute best chicken rub for smoking I discovered accidentally one day when I wanted to smoke some chicken wings. Besides being great for a whole chicken, or pieces of chicken, it is also the best dry rub for wings. This smoked chicken (or chicken wing) rub recipe is super simple, gluten free, and allergy friendly.

Best of all, you can add to it to make it your own. Things like chili powder and cayenne paper add a great kick to this smoked chicken wing rub if that is what you like.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes


  • 2 pounds chicken wings
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Measure one cup brown sugar and one teaspoon salt.
  2. Combine brown sugar and salt in a small bowl until they are completely mixed together.
  3. Place rub and desired chicken into ziplock bag and shake, or place into bowl and mix well.
  4. Smoke chicken immediately or allow to marinate for an hour before smoking.
  5. Smoke chicken at 225 degrees F until an internal temperature reaches 165 F, about 2 hours for chicken wings.


This makes enough rub to coat two pounds of chicken wings, or one chicken, whole or cut up into pieces. To make more chicken, simply double, triple, or even quadruple the recipe for a big BBQ!

If you would like to give this recipe a little kick, start with half a teaspoon of cayenne pepper or a teaspoon of chili powder. Add this to the brown sugar and salt mixture before you coat the chicken with it.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 611Total Fat: 37gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 21gCholesterol: 124mgSodium: 955mgCarbohydrates: 45gFiber: 1gSugar: 30gProtein: 26g

Nutrition data is estimated.

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