How to Make Amazing Beer-Can Chicken on Your Grill

Make moist and flavorful chicken in a few simple steps
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How to Make Amazing Beer-Can Chicken on Your Grill

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Learn to make moist and flavorful chicken by following these simple steps.

Create Indirect Heat on Your Grill

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Since the chicken needs to be on the grill for a relatively long time in order to cook through, you want to cook it over indirect heat. If you have a charcoal grill, simply gather the coals on one side of your grill and cook the chicken on the other. If you’re using a gas grill, light all of the burners and preheat the grill. Then turn one burner off and cook the chicken over that area of the grill.

Pat the Chicken Dry

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Remove the giblets from the chicken (if necessary) and then pat the bird dry with paper towels.

Add a Dry Rub

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Combine salt and your favorite mix of spices in a bowl and then rub the spice mixture all over the chicken, inside and out. Try to cover the entire chicken.

Set the Chicken on the Beer Can

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Then, take a half-full can of beer (what you do with the other half of the beer is up to you!) and set it upright on a solid surface. Place the chicken onto the beer can so that the can is inserted into the cavity of the bird. Set the bird on the grill (over indirect heat) using the legs to support it if need be. 

Cover the Grill and Cook the Chicken

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Cover the grill and let the chicken cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the breast meat registers 160 degrees F (the chicken will reach the FDA-approved 165 degrees F as it rests) and the bird’s legs feel loose. If you want to baste the chicken with sauce, do so during the final 20 to 30 minutes of its cook time.

Let the Chicken Rest

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Very carefully remove the chicken from the grill, making sure that you don’t spill hot fat or beer as you do. If you can, hold the chicken with a sturdy pair of tongs and place a spatula under the beer can. Then, lift the bird and place it upright on a cutting board to rest for 10 to 15 minutes before carving.