Beer Chicken BBQ Recipe

When you think of barbecueing, a few things come to mind. Not the least of which is beer and chicken. These two BBQ mainstays are great together but have you ever given any thought to cooking the chicken with beer? Now, it’s no secret that alcohol in various forms has been used in cooking for a very long time. Having said that, I’d be willing to bet that the first guy who tried barbecueing chicken with beer probably just spilled his beer on the chicken while he was preparing it and discovered that it turned out juicy and tasty.

In all seriousness though, I get a lot of people asking about cooking chicken with beer so I thought I’d write a bit about it. When I first started cooking with beer, we just used the smoker. Just wrap the whole bird in aluminum foil add whatever spices you like and pour some beer on top. Then just add a couple of tablespoons of beer every 40 minutes or so until it’s done. This works fine and certainly it doesn’t take any sort of master chef to pull it off.

However, a while back I discovered a new technique which produces an exceptionally juicy and flavorful bird. You actually cook the chicken with a can of beer stuck inside it. Don’t fire up the grill just yet though. Check out this beer chicken BBQ recipe.

Beer Chicken BBQ Recipe
1 Whole Chicken (4 or 5 pounds)

For the Rub:
1 tsp. of Sea Salt
1 tsp. of Garlic Powder
1 tsp. of Paprika
1/2 tsp. of Coarsely Ground Black Pepper
1/2 tsp. of Ground Coridaner (Fresh Coriander is better but sometimes hard to find.)
1/2 tsp. of Ground Cumin
3 tsp. of Melted Butter

Start by combining all the ingredients for the rub in a small bowl.

Now, remove giblets from inside chicken as well as any excess fat. Then rinse the bird with cold water on the inside and outside. Pat dry with paper towels and then generously apply the rub to inside and outside of the bird.

Next thing to do is to prepare the beer. You don’t have to do anything special but I fnd adding a few key ingredients to the beer really helps.

For the Beer:
2 tbsp. of Melted Butter
2 tbsp. of All Round Spice
1 tsp. of Thyme (Again, fresh is better if you can get it)
1 Can of Beer (12 ounces)

Wash the can off before you open it to remove any unwanted germs and dirt. Now pour half the beer out and add the other ingredients listed above to the can.

Cooking the Chicken:
Set up the grill for indirect cooking with a drip pan in the middle. Fill the grill with charcoal and light it up. Once the coals have gotten a thin layer of gray ash on them, clear out a spot in the middle and place a thick metal pan half full of water in the middle.

Place the beer can on a flat surface and hold the chicken upright, with the opening of the body cavity at the bottom. Simply lower the bird onto the beer can. Pull the chicken legs forward so it will stand upright on its own (this isn’t a tough as it sounds). You can tuck the the wings back behind the chicken to help prevent them from burning.

When you are ready to cook, stand the chicken in the center of the hot grill, over the drip pan. Getting any of the chicken over the coals will result in charring. Use the chicken legs and the beer can to get the chicken to stand upright and stabile. Then you simply cover the grill and cook until the chicken for about an hour and a half to three hours depending on the size of the bird and the temperature of the grill. The skin should be brown and crispy when you are done. (see Meat Doneness Temperatures) *Note: You will likely have to add more charcoal after about an hour of cooking.

Once it’s done, remove the chicken from the grill and let it stand for about 5 to 10 minutes before trying to remove the chicken from the beer can. Then simply slice it and serve. Delicious!

Pro Tips:


A Quick BBQ Fact:

Did you know there are six different ways to spell barbecue in the english language? BBQ, Bar-BQ, Bar-B-Cue, Bar-B-Que, Barbeque and Barbecue. That's a lot of BBQs!