What the heck is beer can chicken? No, it's not chicken stuffed inside a beer can, it's actually the other way around. It's chicken propped up on a beer can (full, of course) and baked or grilled. The steam and flavor of the beer helps keep the chicken moist during cooking, and it gives it a great taste, too. So, how do you make beer can chicken? Read on for some simply great beer can chicken recipes!
Beer Can Chicken on the Electric Smoker
1 whole chicken (do not cut up)1 can beer at room temperature 2 Tbsp. onion, chopped 2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar 3 cloves garlic, minced Freshly ground black pepper Kosher salt
First, turn on the smoker to preheat according to your manufacturer's directions. Wash chicken and trim off loose skin if necessary, remove giblets from inside the chicken. Season the outside of the chicken with salt and pepper. As smoker heats, open beer and drink or pour out half the can, leaving half the beer in the can. Cut off the top of the can with a can opener, being careful not to spill. Add onion, vinegar, and garlic to beer, along with salt and pepper. When the smoker is heated, place the beer on the grill rack. Carefully place the opening of the chicken on the beer can, standing up with the legs down toward the grill rack. Adjust the chicken on the can until it stands up by itself. You have to completely cover the beer can with the chicken for this to work. Smoke the chicken on medium heat for about 4 hours or until the skin is a dark tan and the internal temperature of the thigh reads 170 degrees. Allow to stand 10 minutes before carving.
Beer Can Chicken on the Grill
1 whole chicken (do not cut up1 can beer at room temperature 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 tsp. dried rosemary 2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil 1 tsp. dried thyme 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes Juice of 1 lemon Freshly ground black pepper Kosher salt
Begin preheating grill. Rinse chicken and trim off any loose skin, if necessary. Take out giblets from inside the chicken. Sprinkle salt and pepper all over the outside of the chicken. Open beer and drink or pour out half. Place remaining ingredients inside the can. Use a can opener to take off the top of the can. Balance the chicken on top of the can, making sure the can is completely covered by the chicken. You may have to move the chicken around to get it to balance on the can. Place the chicken on the preheated grill. Cook over indirect heat for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or until the internal temperature of the thigh is 170 degrees. Let chicken stand about 10 minutes before carving.
You can adapt beer can chicken recipes to the oven, just use the beer can to balance the chicken and place it on the bottom rack in the oven and bake like you would normally. Beer can chicken recipes are a fun way to make chicken, and the juicy, tasty results are worth it!
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