Chicken Wing Substitutes (10 Meat and Meat-Free Options)

Chicken wings are a delicious dish. 

They’re a firm favorite when it comes to snacks and entertaining. 

But wing prices are going up and you may need a substitute. 

Plus not everyone has the same dietary requirements! 

We’ve put together a list of options so that you can cook something that will please everyone! 

Have a read of the guide below to find some alternatives to chicken wings. 

Meat Alternatives for Chicken Wings

For a classic meat substitute, you have several options available. 

Not all of these will have the same budget, but all are tasty!

Have a read of some of these delicious alternatives and discover your new favorite. 

Boneless Chicken Wings

Boneless chicken wings are chicken breast that has been chopped and coated. 

For the best possible results, we recommend using chicken tenderloins. 

Other cuts of chicken could result in rubbery meat. 

Chicken Legs

This is as close to a chicken wing substitute as you’re going to get. 

The only main difference is that drumsticks will be larger than regular wings. 

If you’re substituting with chicken legs be sure to increase the cooking time. 

smoked chicken legs are a alternatives to wings

Turkey Wings

If you’re looking for something a bit different, try turkey wings as a substitute. 

When cooking turkey wings be careful as the meat can dry out and toughen. 

We recommend smoking the turkey wings. 

Our Favorite Chicken Wing Recipe

Decide just want some chicken wings?

See our favorite smoked wings recipe here.

Vegan And Vegetarian Options

For those with a vegan or vegetarian diet, there are plenty of substitutes. 

We think the plant-based meat alternatives are tastier!

Have a look at the substitutes for chicken wings below. 

Tofu Wings

Tofu is a great option for vegetarian and vegan chicken wings. 

Firm tofu can be easily sliced into a wing or drumstick shape. 

Tofu is also fantastic for absorbing spices and is amazing with hot sauce. 


Seitan is an awesome ingredient and meat-free product made out of gluten. 

It is very soft and has a meaty texture perfect for chicken drumettes. 

Seitan has a high protein content, is low in fat, and is perfect for a low-calorie diet. 

A Mixture Of Seitan And Tofu

A combination of seitan and tofu is a great idea!

By adding tofu to seitan you will end up with a richer taste. 

However, it’s not ideal for those following a gluten-free diet or who have soy allergies. 

Cauliflower Bites

Cauliflower is a popular plant-based substitute when it comes to vegan options. 

It has a similar appearance to chicken drumettes and the average price is cheap.

Cauliflower also cooks quickly and is fantastic for absorbing flavors. 

Oyster Mushroom Wings

For something super easy use oyster mushrooms for your wings substitute. 

You can deep-fry, bake or fry oyster mushrooms. 

This vegan chicken alternative is also soy-free, dairy-free, egg-free, and gluten-free. 

Buffalo Ranch Fries

These fries are less like wings but work well as a tasty appetizer or alternate snack. 

Treat them like poutine and load them with cheese and gravy.

Alternatively, blue cheese dressing, ranch dressing, and buffalo sauce are also excellent toppings. 

Chicken wings are tasty, spicy, and mouth-wateringly good. 

But if there’s a price increase or a chicken wing shortage, you’ll need alternative options. 

No need to worry. 

There are plenty of meat substitutes that don’t involve animal products. 

One of our favorite aspects is the range of alternative proteins and plant-based meat substitutes. There’s something out there for every cook!

What is your favorite alternative to wings? 

Smoke On!


Author: Charlie Reeves
Hi, I’m Charlie, I am head taste tester at Simply Meat Smoking! I love it grilling, smoking, and getting out in the yard with the kids! The family also love to test all my recipes (especially my EXTRA CRISPY pulled pork, smoky pork loin, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill)

You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling adventures with you!

You can read more on our About Us page.

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