The best beer can chicken roaster
If chicken is what's for dinner most nights, you might be looking to change up your cooking style to keep things interesting -- and appealing.
With a beer can chicken roaster, it's easy to enjoy juicy, flavorful chicken. In fact, you don't even need to have a beer can on hand to use one. Rather, beer can chicken roasters borrow the beer can design and interpret it as a cylindrical container that can be filled with liquid and ingredients of your choosing.
That's all there is to it: simply load up your ingredients and let your chicken roast. If that sounds appealing, keep reading our buying guide on beer can chicken roasters. We'll share popular features, plus we're including a few product recommendations at the end. Our favorite, Outset Cast-Iron Beer Can Chicken Holder, is naturally nonstick for easy cleaning.
Considerations when choosing beer can chicken roasters
Given the design of these accessories, chickens are roasted upright. Depending on the size of the chicken, that could mean it reaches 10 to 16 inches in height. As a result, you'll need to adjust racks if you're cooking in an oven or ensure there's adequate clearance for it in an outdoor grill.
To add flavor to the beer can chicken roaster, fill the receptacle with your preferred liquid, such as beer, soda, or marinade. You can also add dry ingredients, like fruits, vegetables, and spices, the essences and flavors of which will work their way into the chicken. It's also recommended to apply a spice rub or sauce to the outside of the chicken to enjoy flavor inside and out.
Ease of cleaning
One of the first features you'll notice about beer can chicken roasters is their simple design. Not only does this make them easy to use, it also means they're incredibly easy to clean. More often than not, they're made with stainless steel or food-safe plastic, both of which are dishwasher safe. Cast-iron roasters aren't dishwasher safe, though they remain easy to clean by hand.
Parts of beer can chicken roasters
The beer can is the crown jewel of these roasters, though the term "beer can" is used rather loosely. More than anything, it refers to the receptacle in which ingredients are placed. They have a capacity of 10 to 14 ounces and are traditionally cylindrical in shape.
Juices seep out of the chicken while it's cooking, so most beer can chicken roasters come with drip trays. They have raised edges to catch liquid, and in some cases, they have a spout for easy pouring.
If you're a fan of roasting veggies or grilling shrimp, consider investing in a beer can chicken roaster that comes with skewers. These designs usually feature more involved construction to hold or mount skewers around the chicken.
If you're not sure how to use your beer can chicken roaster, rest assured that most are packaged with recipe booklets. While the roasting process is fairly easy to master, these booklets come in handy to expand your horizons with a diverse collection of flavor infusion recipes.
Run-of-the-mill beer can chicken roasters cost $20 and below and are usually limited to the beer can receptacle. Those priced closer to $40 are made of stainless steel or cast iron and often come with bonus accessories. High-end roasters made by speciality kitchen accessory brands run as high as $60.
Q. Can I use a beer can chicken roaster with other poultry?
A. Provided the poultry fits, yes. In fact, beer can chicken roasters are often used to cook turkey and duck as well. While you may need to adjust flavor profiles and cooking times accordingly, it's definitely worth exploring if you'd like to expand your palate.
Q. What is the best material for a beer can chicken roaster?
A. It depends on your needs. If ease of cleaning is your top concern, stick to plastic or stainless-steel roasters. If you're in search of a roaster that will last through years of heavy use, it's best to invest in a cast-iron model.
Beer can chicken roasters we recommend
Best of the best: Outset's Cast-Iron Beer Can Chicken Holder
Our take: Earns high marks for its sturdy construction with heavyweight cast iron.
What we like: Two-piece unit is easy to clean. Doubles as a convenient garlic roaster.
What we dislike: Height is likely too tall for certain types of grills.
Best bang for your buck: Treasure Gurus' Beer Can Chicken Roaster
Our take: Simple stainless-steel design that keeps the process straightforward and clean.
What we like: Compatible with most grill types. Triangular base won't fall between grates.
What we dislike: Stable base but doesn't have the same center of gravity as heavier options.
Our take: Multifunctional design lets you cook your main course with all the fixings.
What we like: Stainless steel design is easy to clean. Skewers are popular to cook veggies or shrimp.
What we dislike: Some sharp edges, so it's important to look before you reach.
Sian Babish is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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