BBQ Beer-Can Chicken on a Charcoal Grill

Published August 1, 2005.

Why this recipe works:

A classic of the barbecue circuit, BBQ Beer-Can Chicken involves resting a whole chicken upright on a can of beer and grill-roasting it. We lanced the chicken’s skin with a skewer to make holes from which rendering fat could escape, then rubbed the chicken liberally with a spice rub on top of… read more

A classic of the barbecue circuit, BBQ Beer-Can Chicken involves resting a whole chicken upright on a can of beer and grill-roasting it. We lanced the chicken’s skin with a skewer to make holes from which rendering fat could escape, then rubbed the chicken liberally with a spice rub on top of and underneath the skin. We opened the top of the beer can wide open with a church key to allow the greatest amount of steam to escape—the normal pop-top hole is far too small. We banked the coals in the grill on either side of a disposable aluminum pan. The coals cooked the chicken evenly and the pan caught dripping fat from the chicken. Finally, we coated the chicken with a sweet-tart glaze toward the end of cooking to improve the chicken’s flavor and color.

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Makes 2 chickens, serving 4 to 6

Look for chickens that weigh between 3 and 3 1/2 pounds; if they are significantly larger, you may have trouble fitting the lid on the grill.

Ingredients

Detail sfs bbq beer can chicken
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