Beer-Barbecued Chicken

By Logo inline

Here’s our spin on the roast-a-chicken-on-top-of-a-can-of-beer technique that’s popular with barbecue aficionados. To simplify things, we just pour a little beer inside the chicken as it cooks. The beer keeps the meat juicy and a smoky-flavored spice rub both under and over the skin gives it extra flavor. Barbecuing poultry with the skin on helps prevent the meat from drying out. To keep calories and fat in check, remove the skin before serving.

 Beer-Barbecued Chicken
photographer: Ken Burris
Nutritionist Tested & Approved
  • Total Time: 1 3/4 hours

  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika, (see Shopping Tip)

  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt

  • 1 teaspoon packed dark brown sugar

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle chile, (see Shopping Tip)

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

  • 1 4-pound chicken

  • 1 12-ounce bottle beer, preferably pale ale or American lager, divided

  1. Equipment: Kitchen string, metal or foil drip pan

  2. 6 servings

  3. Preheat a gas grill (with all burners lit) to 400°F or build a fire in a charcoal grill and let it burn down to medium heat (about 400°F).

  4. Combine paprika, oregano, salt, brown sugar, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, chipotle chile and pepper in a small bowl.

  5. Remove giblets from chicken (if included) and trim any excess skin. Loosen the skin over the breast and thigh meat. Rub the spice mixture under the skin onto the breast meat and leg meat, a little on the skin and inside the cavity. Tuck wings under the body and tie the legs together with kitchen string.

  6. If using a gas grill, turn off one burner (leaving 1 to 2 burners lit, depending on your grill). If using a charcoal grill, move the coals to one side. Wearing an oven mitt, carefully place a drip pan under the grill rack on the unheated side. Place the chicken breast-side down on the rack over the pan. Pour half the beer into the cavity (it’s OK if some drips out into the drip pan).

  7. Close the lid and roast undisturbed for 45 minutes.

  8. Turn the chicken breast-side up. Pour the remaining beer into the cavity. Cover and continue roasting until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh without touching bone registers 165°F, 30 to 45 minutes more. Transfer the chicken to a clean cutting board; let rest for 10 minutes before removing the string and carving.

Nutritional Facts

Per serving (without skin)
Saturated Fat
Monounsaturated Fat
Dietary Fiber
Added Sugars
3 1/2 lean meat
Carbohydrate Servings
Iron (15% daily value).

In partnership with EatingWell EATINGWELL® is a registered trademark of EatingWell, Inc.

american main dish moderate picnic spring summer super bowl winter eatingwell housewarming grill barbecue birthday budget chicken entertainment fall fathers day fourth of july chicken/poultry