Recipes / Beer Can Chicken

Beer Can Chicken

Beer Can

Aug 20, 21

Beer Can Chicken

Beer Can Chicken

Cook Time: 2.5 - 3 hrs
Print Recipe
Print Recipe


This week on the Summer Grill Series, I make a super cheap and easy beer can chicken! Chicken held vertical by a beer can in the charcoal grill, stays incredibly moist with crispy skin and has a ton of flavor. I serve this one with a nice summer-y pesto sauce.


  • 1 whole chicken (gizzards removed)
  • Chud rub or preferred seasoning
  • 1/2 can of beer (Miller Lite or any preferred beer)
  • Cooking oil spray
For the Pesto Sauce:
  • Fresh basil leaves
  • Pine nuts
  • Garlic cloves
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Salt
  • Extra virgin olive oil (EVO)
  • Lemon juice


  • Take your bird and make sure there are no gizzards inside. Season the chicken generously on all sides, including the cavity, with chud rub or your preferred seasoning. Ensure the chicken is fully coated.
  • Tuck the wing tips behind the chicken to prevent them from burning during grilling.
  • Take a half-full can of beer, such as Miller Lite, and place it upright on a stable surface. Carefully insert the chicken cavity over the can so that it stands upright on its own. The can should be inside the chicken.
  • Give the chicken a final touch-up of the rub, and if needed, spray it with cooking oil.
  • Place the beer can chicken directly on the grill grates, making sure it is positioned securely. Close the lid of the grill and let it cook.
  • Check on the chicken periodically, turning it occasionally to ensure all sides are evenly cooked and develop a nice color. Maintain a grill temperature of around 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius).
  • After approximately 2.5 hours of cooking, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the chicken. The chicken is done when the thickest part reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit (74 degrees Celsius). 
  • Once the chicken reaches the desired internal temperature, carefully remove it from the grill. Allow the chicken to rest for a few minutes before carving.
  • While the chicken is cooking  prepare the pesto sauce.
  • In a food processor, add fresh basil leaves, pine nuts, garlic cloves, Parmesan cheese, and salt. Blend the ingredients until a paste-like consistency forms.
  • Drizzle in extra virgin olive oil (EVO) while the food processor is running, continuing to blend until the desired consistency is achieved. Add a little squeeze of lemon juice for a refreshing tang.
  • Carve the beer can chicken into serving pieces, and serve it with the homemade pesto sauce on the side.
  • Dive in!
Brad author info

Hi, I'm Brad

"My goal is to provide recipes meant for the backyard, but using skills I've learned with my years cooking professionally. Go cook something outside!"

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