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Beer Can Chicken


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Beer Can Chicken

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1-1¼ hours

Serves: 4




  • 4 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper




  • Any light lager in a can. Go with something cheap, but relatively drinkable.


  • A 3½–4 lb. chicken
  • Foil baking pan (for drippings)

The Nitty Gritty – Rub


  1. Combine salt, brown sugar, paprika and cayenne in a small bowl or resealable container.
  2. Make as much as you want, but maintain the ratio of 4-3-2-1 as outlined in the ingredients.

The Nitty Gritty – Chicken & Beer


  1. Pour out (drink, you fool!) half a beer.
  2. Prepare grill for high, indirect heat and fit with grill pan.

    For a charcoal grill, bank coals on 1 side of the grill and put the drip pan on the empty side; for a gas grill, leave 1 burner turned off and place the drip pan over the unlit burner. Add water to the pan to a depth of ½ inch.
  3. Season the chicken with at least 2 tablespoons of spice rub.
  4. Place the cavity of the chicken, legs pointing down, onto the open can so that it supports the chicken upright.
  5. Place the newly assembled beer-chicken tower on the grill over indirect heat, above the drip pan.
  6. Grill chicken, covered, until cooked through, with the thickest part of the thigh registering an internal temp of 165°. (45-60 minutes. If using charcoal, you may need to add more to maintain the heat.)
  7. Let chicken rest for 10 minutes before serving.
  8. Serve with drippings. And whatever’s left of the case of beer.
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