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Beer Can Chicken on the grill

Beer Can Chicken

Yield: 6 servings 1x
Prep: 24 hoursCook: 2 1/2 hoursTotal: 0 hours


Brine (we used 1/2 of this turkey brine recipe, but feel free to use any favorite brine recipe)

1 large chicken (ours was 7 1/4 pounds. After draining and removing giblets, it weighed in at 6 1/2 pounds)

Spice rub for Chicken (we used this homemade chicken rub recipe, or this is a delicious store-bought option)

1 tall slender can of any light beer. We used a canned light Blue Moon called Light Sky

1 large sprig rosemary

8 small potatoes (red or yellow or both), cut in half or quarters

3 small onions, cut in half or quarters

4 ears of corn, husked and cut into 3 or 4 pieces

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Make the brine (half recipe) according to the instructions and cool.

Rinse the chicken and remove the giblets and neck. Place the chicken into a large food-grade zipper seal bag. Then lift the chicken in the bag and place in a large pot to hold it upright.

Pour in the cooled brine, squeeze out the air and zipper the bag. Brine refrigerated for 12-24 hours.

Mix the spice rub and set aside.

Set the beer can chicken rack into a disposable aluminum pan (for easy clean up) then set that onto a foil lined sheet tray. Set aside.

When ready to roast, about three hours before serving, heat grill or oven to 350 degrees F.

Pour out the brine and discard. Rinse the chicken under cold water then pat dry and brush the outside skin with half of the vegetable oil.

Pour off one quarter of the beer and stick a rosemary sprig into the can opening. We also twisted off the pull ring and discarded. Then place into the center of your beer can chicken rack, or if not using the rack, place the can in the center of the aluminum pan.

Hold the chicken upright over your cutting board and sprinkle generously with rub inside and out.

Slide the chicken over the beer can, legs pointing down. With kitchen shears, nip off the wing tips and discard. The chicken should sit upright without tipping and the legs should be suspended.

Place the cut-up vegetables around the pan bottom and around the chicken. If your chicken won’t stay upright, you can use a few of the potatoes to hold it in place.

NOTE: The corn may possibly be cooked before the chicken finishes. If the corn is tender and cooked, remove once cooked but add back in towards the end of the cooking time to heat back up. We pulled our corn after 90 minutes then added it back in for the last 15 minutes.

Brush the vegetables with the rest of the oil and sprinkle them with the salt and pepper.

Place into your heated grill with lid shut or oven and roast for 1 ½ to 2 ½ hours depending on the size of the chicken and the accuracy of your grill or oven. The internal temperature when you place a probe into the thickest part of the thigh should be 160 degrees F.

Our 7 ¼ pound chicken roasted at exactly 350 degrees F for just short of 2 ½ hours then rested for 15 minutes with a piece of foil over the top. I put the vegetables back in while the chicken rested to get them browned and crispy.

After resting for 15 minutes, slice and carve as you would any roast chicken and serve with the hot vegetables.

The liquid that settles on the bottom of the pan is delicious drizzled over the portions.

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© Author: A Family Feast
Cuisine: American Method: grilled, roasted