The Famous Beer Can Chicken recipe
Yes, this is the Beer Can Chicken recipe that you've heard so much about, a nice plump juicy bird perched on an open can of beer and then grilled to perfection.
Also called Beer Butt Chicken this recipe first started making the rounds by word of mouth.
Now there's a whole industry dedicated to helping you make a BBQ Beer Can chicken including special spices, unique chicken holders and even cans preloaded with different flavored liquids.
It's this simple method that makes it so great - the fat drains off making the skin nice and crispy all while the beer in the can steams up into the chicken keeping it moist and adding flavor.
Serves: 2 - 4
Indirect Heat: 350F - 400F
Work your fingers under the skin and lift the skin up from the meat of the bird.
Work the rub over the skin with your fingers and replace the skin back over the meat of the bird.
Variations: try different spices or rubs to change the flavor of the chicken. Lemon Pepper is nice, or even just a blend of 1 part onion powder, 1 part garlic powder and 1 part black pepper.
Tip: shown here is a spicy hot pepper infused olive oil instead of plain oil. You can find these in larger grocery stores in different flavors including garlic, lemon or basil.
Rub into the skin well so it doesn't fall off while moving or cooking.
Tip: shown here I'm inserting a clove of garlic into the can of beer. You could also use spices or herbs like basil, rosemary or tarragon. Just needs some imagination...
Variations: try different liquids in the can to infuse different flavors in the bird. Lemonade, white wine or even just (gasp!) water.
The can should insert at least 50% into the cavity of the bird.
Position the two legs to act as supports like a tripod with the beer can being the 3rd support leg.
Tip: shown here is a very inexpensive but extremely useful beer can chicken holder. There are many shapes and sizes to choose from. You're basically looking for something to help prevent the bird from falling over as well as collect the fat and moisture drippings.
If your using wood chips add them now. If using a gas grill and you don't have a smoking chip holder consider using a foil packet to hold the chips or pellets.
Close the grill lid and cook the bird at medium heat (350F) until the skin is a nice crispy golden brown and the internal temperature reaches 170F and the juices run clear (not pink).
If grilling over charcoal you'll need to replenish the fire with at least 12 briquettes or lump charcoal after an hour.
Tip: insert a wireless remote temperature probe in the thickest part of the thigh and not touching the bone.
Remove the bird from the beer can. You can either discard the beer or use it to make chicken BBQ sauce.
Cover the chicken and let rest for 10 minutes before carving. The internal temperature will continue to rise at least 5 degrees.
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