Chicken On A Beer Can

Chicken On A Beer Can

· 2 tsp of dried sage (10ml)
· 2 tsp of cayenne (10ml)
· 1 tbsp of celery salt (15ml)
· 1 tbsp of black pepper (15ml)
· 2 tbsp of brown sugar (30ml)
· 1 tbsp of garlic powder (15ml)
· 1 tbsp of thyme leaves (15ml)


· 1 x large King Can of beer (16 ounces)
· 1/4 cup of chicken stock (60ml)
· 1 tbsp of brandy (15ml)
· 2 tsp of lemon juice, freshly squeezed (10ml)
· 2 tbsp of butter (30ml)
· 1 x roasting chicken (6-7 lbs)
· 4 tbsp of melted butter (60ml)
· 2 cups of hickory wood chips (475ml)


  1. Combine all of the rub ingredients into a bowl and mix.


  1. Pour half of the beer over half the wood chips to soak for 30 minutes. Using a church key style can opener, make 2 additional holes in the top of the beer can and set it aside for future use.

  2. To inject the marinade into the chicken, place the chicken stock, brandy, lemon juice, butter and 1 tablespoon of the Cajun rub into a medium sized saucepan. Warm through gently until the butter melts. Remove from the heat and set aside until the mixture comes to room temperature.

  3. Remove the giblets from the chicken and set aside. Remove the fat from just inside the body and neck cavities. Rinse the chicken inside and out and pat dry. Season the cavity of the chicken with 2 tablespoons of the Cajun Rub.

  4. Pull the injector marinade into a large syringe. Inject the sauce into the breasts, thighs and drumsticks of the chicken until plump.

  5. Brush the outside of the bird with some of the melted butter and season with 3 tablespoons of the Cajun rub.

  6. Hold the bird upright with the opening of the body cavity down. Lower the chicken into the upright beer can pull its legs forward to form a tripod allowing the bird to stand upright.

  7. Tuck the wing tips so that they don’t burn.

  8. Preheat the grill to high heat (500°F) on one side (indirect grilling). Place a drip pan on the other side of the grill with no heat underneath.

  9. Squeeze the excess beer from the soaking wood hunks and place in the center of a large piece of foil. Add the hickory wood chunks and fold the foil around the wood to create a sealed package. Using a fork, poke holes in both sides of the wood package and place it directly over the heat source on the grill. Close the lid and wait for smoke.

  10. When smoke is visible, reduce the heat to medium under the wood chip package and leave the other burners off.

  11. Place the chicken upright on the cool side of the grill over the drip pan. Brush with melted butter. Close the lid and cook at 220°F (110°C) for 2½ hours until golden brown and the internal temperature has reached 180°F.

  12. Baste the bird carefully every 45 minutes to an hour with more melted butter. If the bird begins to get excessively browned on the outside, cover it gently with foil.

  13. Remove the finished chicken from the beer can carefully. Do not touch without proper protection as both the can and the liquid will be very hot. Let the chicken rest covered for 5 minutes before carving.

I’ve had beer-butt chicken before, and it is great…so moist! But this recipe is DYNAMITE…I am soooo dying to try this…I may never to be able to BBQ again without my neighbours standing in line with their plate held out, mouths open and utensils in hand! Great post…thank you very much! :wink:

B-man :smiley:

Hey b-man! I’m glad that you like this recipe; so do I. Now if I can only TASTE it !!! :lol: Let me know how it tastes. 8) (I’ve been after my husband to buy me a bigger BBQ to fit a chicken like this…lol)

Aline, While you are waiting for that ‘Big BBQ’, you can do your beer-can chicken in your oven. Since the oven cooks by the indirect method, your results will be almost the same. The only thing you miss is the flavor of the wood smoke. That can somewhat be remedied by putting some liquid smoke in the beer can. I found a mesquite flavor that I really like. ‘Stubb’s Mesquite Liquid Smoke’ If you can’t find it in your local market go to I have also added the liquid smoke to my dry rub to make a paste to coat the cavity of the chicken before sitting it on the beer can. Just position your oven rack low enough to accommodate the full height of the chicken(or turkey…just use a 32oz beer can). Preheat oven to 350F, place chicken on beer can in a roasting pan and when juices run clear…enjoy your feast!


Thank you very much Joanie! I never thought of doing it in the oven. What kind of beer works better? Ale or lager? Not a beer drinker LOL

P.S. I won’t tell hubby. I still want my BBQ lol :lol:

It really doesn’t matter that much because the beer flavor you get is pretty mild any way. The ale and darker beers give a sweet malty flavor, but still delicate. Also, the better beers from micro-brewers etc. seem to come in bottles and not cans and you would have to transfer it to a can anyway. You don’t even have to use beer. I have used cans of Coca Cola, root beer, apple juice and apricot nectar…all with great results.