Barbecued beer can chicken

    2 hours 5 min

    Whole chickens are rubbed with a spice rub, before being place onto a half full can of beer and barbecued. This recipe produces a robustly flavoured chicken, every time.

    30 people made this

    Serves: 8 

    • 230g cherry wood chips
    • 2 (440ml) cans beer, half full
    • 110g dark brown soft sugar
    • 115g sea salt
    • 55g paprika
    • 4 tablespoons ground black pepper
    • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
    • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
    • 2 (1.35kg) whole chickens

    Prep:25min  ›  Cook:1hr30min  ›  Extra time:10min resting  ›  Ready in:2hr5min 

    1. Soak wood chips in water for at least 1 hour.
    2. Preheat an outdoor barbecue for indirect medium heat.
    3. Mix together dark brown soft sugar, sea salt, paprika, ground black pepper and cayenne pepper in a small bowl. Place two half full cans of beer on a baking tray. Spoon 1 teaspoon seasoning mix into each can. Be careful, this will make the beer foam up and out of the can.
    4. Rub each chicken with 2 tablespoons vegetable oil. Rub the remaining seasoning mix over the entire chicken, inside and out. Fit each chicken over a can of beer with the legs on the bottom; keep upright.
    5. Drain the wood chips and place them with the coals or in an tin on or under the barbecue grate as directed by the barbecue's manual. Place the two chickens, standing on their cans directly on the barbecue. Close the lid and barbecue the chicken until no longer pink at the bone and the juices run clear, about 1 hour 30 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, near the bone should read 82 degrees C. Remove the chickens from the barbecue and discard the beer cans. Cover the chicken with a doubled sheet of foil and allow to rest in a warm area for 10 minutes before slicing.


    Cherry wood chips can be purchased online.

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    Reviews in English (34)


    There's nothing quite like Beer Can Chicken at an outdoor BBQ! Ever since stumbling onto recipes like these here on AR we make these every summer. And, since there's never a shortage of beer in this house or neighbor's to help us eat these birds they've become a favorite. One I made with regular paprika and one I made with smoked paprika and I added a couple teaspoons of garlic powder to each one. It's much easier to take the seasoning mixture and blend it with melted butter vs. veg. oil and place half of it into the beer can and baste the chicken with the other half. Invest in the holder that you can purchase at Wal-Mart or Bed, Bath, & Beyond, you'll be glad you did!  -  10 Jul 2011  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    I used this recipe as my template - I sprayed the chicken with cooking spray, rubbed on my favorite spices and used the rest for the beer can. Wood chips are a must! I used indirect heat (one side of grill turned off), kept the temp at 350 turning the chicken around halfway thru. Best chicken ever - moist and tender and flavorful. We are SO using this to make dinner for Father's Day. Best thing? No hot oven to overheat the house during the summer. Thanks, this is a keeper!  -  03 Jun 2010  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    I also put a small red potato over the neck of the chicken so the meat steams from the inside and stays nice and moist. you could also use small balls of aluminum foil. 6/24/2010 For those of you that don't have a rack use a 24oz can for more leverage. 7/11/2010 Sorry that's a 16oz can.  -  16 Jun 2010  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)