During the winter we regularly roast chicken so that we have a healthy supply of homemade chicken stock and high-quality chicken to use during the week. Not to mention, it smells so good and homey with a chicken roasting. In the summertime, we can’t even think about heating up the kitchen like that. So what to do? Beer can chicken, of course! This is something new for us, but it will definitely become part of the repertoire. We did this on our gas grill, but I am looking forward to trying it over charcoal as well. Our grill doesn’t have a working temperature gauge so we just went with high heat since we were cooking two chickens at once. Another big bonus of cooking these outside is that the mess stays (mostly) outside. That means no cleaning of the oven. There are so many things you can do with this once it is cooked. The meat came out super flavorful, tender and moist. You can really put it in almost anything: salads, quesadillas, rice, pasta… By imparting the flavor through the steam from the beer, you get a ton of moisture! Plus, you can use whatever kind of beer you like. We used something we happened to have around, but there are so many good beers that would be great. Just like cooking with wine; use something you don’t mind drinking. I highly recommend trying this super easy technique!
Beer Can Chicken
1 Good Sized Chicken (Preferably a Roaster)
1 Can of Good Beer
2 Cloves of Garlic, Peeled
2 Sprigs Fresh Rosemary
3-5 Fresh Sage Leaves
1 t. Paprika
A Few Shakes of Hot Sauce
Salt & Pepper
Pre-heat your grill for about 30 minutes. Remove the giblets and neck from the chicken (if necessary) and rinse inside and out. Pat dry with paper towels then rub with olive oil, salt and pepper. (We made some hot spicy olive oil that we will tell you about later!)
Pour about 1/3 of the can of beer into a glass for the chef.
Add garlic cloves, hot sauce, paprika, and herbs to the beer can (leaving the herbs sticking out of the top of the can.)
Gently place the chicken onto the can so the can is resting in the cavity and supporting the chicken.
Tuck the wings back toward the back bone so the chicken is sitting nice and pretty. Make sure to adjust the seasonings on the skin if necessary.
Place on a broiler pan then place on the grill. You can place directly on the grill, but I think the pan helped prevent flare-ups.
Close the lid and cook for 1 hour- 1 hour 30 minutes checking partway through.
The chicken is cooked when golden brown and the temperature reaches 165° in the thigh.
Turn off the grill and allow to rest. Carefully remove the chicken from the can when cool enough. Serve immediately or refrigerate for later!
Kelly & Mary
P.S. These guys produced more smoke than expected, so keep that in mind if you are planning to enjoy your outdoor space while cooking.
P.P.S. Yes, that is a garlic roaster in the background. Roasted garlic is one of the best things ever!