Preparing Smoked Beer Can Chicken
How To Season And Prep The Chicken
Flavor is the name of the game for our BBQ beer can chicken and with so few ingredients, its important to maximize where we can. Therefore, when soaking the wood chips, immerse them in a mixture of water and beerto amplify flavors a the wood chips smoke. Further, we like to add a little BBQ seasoning rub to the other half of the beer, so that as the chicken smokes on the outside, the beer and dry rub cook the interior of the bird with a smoky, spicy steam bath. Mmmm. Doesnt that sound good?
What Is Smoked Beer Can Chicken
Youve heard of beer can chicken, right? You know, when you shove a full can of beer into the cavity of the chicken and grill it?
Well, making smoked beer can chicken is super easy to do.
First, theres the smoker. You can use a Masterbuilt Electric Smoker.
This was my go-to smoker for beer can chicken until we finally wore it out.
Or you can use something like a Kamado Joe Grill. While its not as easy to use as an electric smoker, we now make Kamado Joe beer can chicken as well as steaks, ribs, and brisket. Amazing!
You can also do this smoked chicken recipe on a gas grill, pellet grill, or charcoal grill.
Pro tip: If you have room, do two birds on your smoker. Having leftover chicken for several meals is a real treat!
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Why Is Smoked Beer Butt Chicken So Good
Smoked Beer Can Chicken is the type of recipe that may seem a little intimidating at first, but after making it once, youll wonder why you didnt try it sooner. Forget roasting or grilling you wont find another way to make chicken as moist and flavorful as cooking beer-can chicken in a smoker.
The secret is the beer not only helps steam and flavor the inside of the bird, but the can is a convenient way to keep the chicken upright.
Smoke The Beer Can Chicken For 3 Hours Then Turn Up The Temperature
For the first three hours, youll want to keep the temperature on your pellet grill or smoker right around 225°f. This will gently cook the chicken while keeping the meat moist and tender.
After three hours, its time to turn up the heat and crip that chicken skin!
If youre using a stick burner or a charcoal smoker/grill, youll start your temperature step-up 10-15 minutes early to allow your fuel time to begin to combust and build the temperature in the smoking chamber.
Once the smoker is up to temp, allow the chicken to cook for another hour to fully crisp the skin.
Once the internal temperature of the chicken has reached 165°f, you can carefully remove the smoked beer can chicken from the smoker and allow it to rest.
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Putting Your Beer Can Chicken In Your Masterbuilt Gravity Series
Now that you have preheated your smoker and prepared your chicken, it is time to place it on the grate in the smoker. Take half a can of beer and place it in the center of the smoker. Try to avoid the edges of the grates.
Place the chicken with the but side down and put your finger in the cavity so you can hold it open. Lift the chicken and slide it on top of the beer can. Push the chicken down until it rests evenly on the can and the grill grate.
Seal the top of the chicken. You can seal this opening in many ways. Some people use a small glass cup, while others stitch it closed with a string like a turkey. However, I like to use a potato, but first, I cut it to a small point shaped like the opening. Trim the potato as small as possible but still provide a good seal as it will be discarded when you are done cooking.
Keep in mind that there are many cheap beer can chicken racks that will increase stability and are budget-friendly. However, the more stable your smoker, the less your need a beer can rack. The Masterbuilt gravity series smokers are very stable.
Tip: Your beer works best at room temperature, so it can steam as soon as possible. Some people will preheat half a can of liquid for better results.
Smoked Beer Can Chicken On A Pit Boss Traeger Or Other Pellet Grill
Crispy skin with tender and juicy insides, this smoked beer can chicken is EASY with four simple ingredients! Set it on your pellet smoker, insert the temperature probe and let your pellet grill do all of the hard work. This method for smoking a whole chicken on your Traeger, Pit Boss, or other pellet grill couldnt be more simple. Smoked Beer Can Chicken requires only four ingredients: chicken, oil, beer, and a good meat rub. Try it now, thank me later!
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What If You Dont Drink Beer Beer Can Chicken Without Beer
Make soda chicken! If you dont drink beer you can still use this technique to make chicken. I suggest using a can of sprite, coke, ginger-ale or rootbeer. Make sure to use the real thing . Heating diet sodas can change the chemical composition of some artificial sweetener to something unsafe. The contents of the can dont really get on the meat , but I understand that not everyone buys alcoholic beverages.
Enjoy the recipe!
Preheating Your Masterbuilt Gravity Series For Beer Can Chicken
When preheating a Masterbuilt gravity series smoker for beer can chicken, set the smoker to 50 degrees higher than your intended cooking temperature. After the smoker reaches the set temperature, wait for five minutes, then reduce to your cooking temperature. This preheating technique will allow the smoker cook box to heat up, reducing temperature fluctuation ultimately.
We will preheat the smoker to 325 degrees in todays cooking process. After the smoker reaches this temperature waiting for five to ten minutes will allow all parts of the smoker to preheat.
The five to ten-minute preheating time is the perfect amount of time to prepare your chicken. When you place the chicken in the smoker, start by lowering the temperature to 275 degrees.
Load the chicken as quickly as possible and close the smoker door. Once your smoker door is shut, the digital controller will promptly balance the temperature.
Masterbuilt 1050 Gravity Series is our favorite smoker/grill. The key points for this smoker are durability, size, and ease of use. Check out our review article for the 1050 or the 560. Also, we have a YouTube playlist for the 1050 and the 560.
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What Are The Best Wood Chips For Beer Can Chicken On A Pellet Grill
If you are new to using wood pellets or smoking, here are a few guidelines for selecting the best hardwood pellets to use in this recipe:
- Premium pellets dont contain bark, fillers, or added flavorings. They may be a few bucks more, but theyre worth the additional cost.
- Applewood pellets give the meat a mild smoky sweetness that may not pair the best with chicken.
- Maple pellets are smoky with a distinct flavor that pairs well with all kinds of meat, including chicken. Good maple pellets arent cheap, but they are a fantastic choice.
- Hickory pellets are strong and smoky. They can easily overpower chicken, but if you love a strong flavor, you may want to experiment with them.
- Mesquite pellets give the meat that classic Texas-style BBQ flavor. These hardwood pellets are a good option for those who cant get enough of that smoky goodness.
- Pecan pellets work well with chicken, especially if you want to add a slight nuttiness with spicy undertones.
Traeger Smoked Beer Can Chicken
Youll need smoker pellets or wood chips if you have an electric smoker. Either type will work.
Either way we prefer apple flavor and have both types of smokers. This time we made it in our Green Mountain pellet grill and smoker. We have a Traeger and Charbroil electric version as well.
Then youll need to get your chicken ready to be rubbed down. I have a printable recipe card at the bottom of this post but here is a quick step by step to peek at:
- First youll want to preheat your pellet or electric smoker to 350 degrees F. so its ready once your whole chicken is prepped.
- Pour beer into your chicken stand. Rinse the chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Take everything out of the cavity of the chicken .
- Now pour your beer into your chicken stand. Rinse the chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Take everything out of the cavity of the chicken .
- Rub or spray olive oil on the outside of the skin. Then mix together the ingredients for your dry rub and cover the outside well. Sit your chicken on top of its throne.
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Smoked Beer Can Chicken With Dry Rub
THIS POST SHARES LINKS TO THE THINGS I LOVE.
Its finally football season and theres nothing tastier than a nice piece of smoked beer can chicken to eat while watching the game or tailgating with friends!
Beer can chicken has been around for more than 20 years and is still a popular dish. One reason for its popularity is that you can cook a beer can chicken in the oven, on a gas grill, on a charcoal grill or on a pellet grill/smoker. Whatever method is employed, the chicken is always flavorful, tender, and juicy.
I first heard about beer can chicken when I received my first grilling book Steven Raichlins, How To Grill. He is credited as the inventor of the original tasty recipe. His book is awesome and a gateway to his newer book, Project Smoke, which is the ultimate guide on how to smoke. Its a must have for those who are interested in getting the most flavor out of their backyard smokers.
Ive made beer can chicken on my gas grill before and it was easy. But, the acquisition of a Traeger Pellet Grill was a game-changer! We are obsessed with backyard smoking and want to smoke all the things! And, smoked beer can chicken is amazing.
Smoked Beer Can Chicken Recipe
Smoked beer can chicken gets everyone in my family excited! It could be that the chicken is joining in on an afternoon beer. Or is knowing that chicken sitting on a can of beer makes means an exceptionally juicy and flavorsome bird!No matter what the real reason is, I do know that beer can chicken is a favorite around my family table!Hungry Now?Jump Straight to My Beer Can Chicken Recipe!
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Beer Can Chicken In The Oven
You can cook beer can chicken in the oven. Its not exactly the same, but its still pretty darn good. Move the oven rack down to the lower third or bottom rack depending on the size of your oven. You may want to rub/brush a little liquid smoke on your bird before running in oil and with the dry rub to add that smoky flavor.
Prepare the chicken as mentioned above, place it standing up on a cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 1 1 ½ hour or until the thickest part of the thigh registers 165 on your oven thermometer.
Gather All Of Your Ingredients
Before you start cooking anything, read the recipe thoroughly to ensure you understand each step, and then gather your ingredients together. Youd be surprised how many mistakes or accidents you can avoid by checking this step off the list before proceeding!
One absolutely crucial piece of equipment for this recipe is a beer can chicken stand. While you can truss the chicken and carefully arrange it to keep it from falling during the cooking process, the beer can chicken stand makes the job a ton easier, and once you taste this recipe, youre definitely going to make it again!
Once youve got all of your ingredients on hand and fully understand the recipe, go ahead and get down to cooking.
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What Kind Of Marinade
I like to use this Easy Chicken Marinade recipe.
If you dont want to make anything from scratch, use store-bought, olive oil based vinaigrette salad dressing instead.
Dont worry about the marinade if youre doing keto or any type of low-carb diet. It just adds moisture to the poultry, not a bunch of carbs.
Is Cooking Beer Can Chicken Dangerous
In the past, it has been said that beer can chicken can be dangerous.
One reason people say this is because the chicken can fall over while cooking.
However, if this occurs, you can simply use gloves to put the chicken back in its upright position.
Some people are also concerned that the ink from the beer can will get on the chicken and contaminate it while its cooking.
However, tests have been conducted, and, time and time again, it has been found that none of the ink from the can got on the meat of the chicken.
Pellet smoker beer can chicken is a great way to cook up a nice, juicy bird.
Whats your favorite way to make this delicious recipe?
Hi, I’m Joost, the founder of Lakeside Smokers. I love trying out new food with BBQ Smoking at the heart of my passion, and I’ve been creating in-depth guides since 2016 to help you with recipes & cooking tips.
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How To Make Beer Can Chicken
Now don’t get all scared about using wood chips, you don’t need a smoker to use them. All you need is a gas grill and a small pan to put those wood chips in. Thrift yourself a small cast iron pan to use in your BBQ and you will have it made in the shade!
This recipe yields the tenderest, juiciest, most delicious beer can chicken EVER. We have eaten it three times in the past two weeks. mainly because the first time I didn’t get photos, the second time we planned to get photos and did and then last night we made it because the kids LOVE it. It’s also easy as heck to make.
First off, mesquite smoke turns your chicken pink in places. Don’t worry, it will be cooked. It will be weird to see pink chicken, but as long as your thermometer reads that 180 in the thigh area you are good. It’s just what mesquite wood chip can do to a chicken. We actually OVER cooked the one in the photo above and you can see that the thigh meat turned smoky pink.
You’ll also notice that we use a cheap aluminum pan to catch the drippings. It’s the easiest way to make the chicken and yes, we do re-use the pan. It’s been washed and used three times now and works like a charm! While this is in our smoker, you simple take out any top rack in your BBQ and place the chicken on the grill just like this one above.
Beer Can Chicken On The Smoker
Beer Can Chicken, or better known as “beer butt chicken” is one of my favorite smoked foods. It’s fun to prepare, easy to cook, and comical to serve. And every time I cook them, they always turn out perfect.If you like rotisserie chicken, but want a smoke and beer flavor to compliment the chicken, this is the absolute way to go. This is my own recipe and winged it the first time I smoked it. It was awesome and now something I do at least twice a year.
I smoked the whole chickens in my Masterbuilt Electric Smoker, so the cooking time and temperature may vary if you are using a different type of smoker. But for the most part, it should turn out perfect as long as you follow this recipe.Unlike grilled chicken, the smoked beer can chicken cooks at a much lower temperature, thus doesn’t boil the beer in the can. But it still gets hot, creating a light steam along with the gentle smoke to deeply marinate and moisten the chicken while it slowly roasts.Another great benefit with cooking your chicken in the smoker is that you don’t have to rotate it around. Once you set it in the smoker, it stays where it is until it is done. Just be careful removing it from the smoker as the contents of the beer can are extremely hot, along with the whole chicken.
I will be trying this recipe in an offset smoker next and will let you know any differences.
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