Grilled chicken wings simmered in Coke 手羽のコーク照り焼き

japanese cake

We have seen recipes which involve meat cooked in or sauce made of Coca Cola. This recipe, involving simmering chicken wings in Cola before grilling, is from a Japanese cooking website I follow. Although we almost never drink soda/cola and we do not have cola handy in our household, I thought this was  worth a try. So the next time I was at the grocery store, I made a point of buying a bottle of Coca Cola (regular Coke, not diet or the “Zero” kind). I served a wing and drumette with lots of veggies including cauliflower with chimichurri sauce, coleslaw, blanched broccoli and skinned and sliced tomato seasoned with salt and olive oil.

The skin of the chicken was nicely browned but not crispy (but not unpleasant) and the meat was very tender.

I followed the directions fairly closely but I did not bother browning the skin before simmering in Coke and I also used both drumettes and wings (The original recipe only used drumettes).


Chicken wings, 6 each wings and drumettes

Coca-Cola, regular, 1 bottle (16 fl oz or about 500 ml)

Garlic, 2-3 cloves

Japanese small whole dried red pepper, seeds removed, 2

Salt, 1/2 tsp

Sake 4 tbs

Soy sauce 5 tbs + sugar 2-3 tbs (I did not add sugar since Coke, to me, is very sweet.. a 12 oz can/bottle contains 52grams of sugar!).


1. Brown skin in a frying pan with olive oil (I did not see the point of make skin brown before simmering in liquid and omitted this).

2. Add the Coke and sake to the chicken wings in the frying pan. Skim off any scum (for some reason, “scum” developed immediately when the Coke mixture was added. After the scum is removed, add soy sauce and cover the pan with aluminum foil which was shaped to fit the opening of the pan.

3. Simmer for 30 minutes.

4. I let it cool to room temperature.

5. Since I was not ready to eat the chicken I put the simmering liquid and the chicken wings in a sealable container and in the refrigerator.

6. A few days later, I removed the chicken wings from the marinade and grilled them in the toaster oven for 10-15 minutes or until the skin was nicely browned.

This is rather good. Coca Cola* contains acid (phosphoric acid) which apparently tenderized the meat. The other ingredients added flavor. Compared to the other grilled chicken wings we make, the meat of this one is very tender with a nice sweet and sour flavor.  If you divide up the simmering and baking steps for different days, as I have done here, you can enjoy baked/grilled chicken wings very quickly even on a workweek evening. I wonder if I cook the wings in black vinegar, soy sauce and mirin mixture, will the effect be similar.

*It contains Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Natural Flavors, Caffeine (as per Coca-cola website). 

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