This is only the 2nd time I have done a whole chicken on my grill. My "new" grill (got it back in October, so it is not really all that new) has a rotisserie motor and spit rod, which I have used once. This beer can chicken blew away the rotisserie chicken that I made before.
What, you may ask, is beer can chicken?
Well, here are the basics:
- Drink half a can of beer.
- Stick the remaining half can of beer up a chicken's butt
- Cook the chicken on the grill
But here is what I did:
First, I asked my wife to pick up a whole chicken for the grocery store when she was there. She told me that she got the last one. It was around 5 lbs, which is a bit bigger than the birds in most of the recipes I saw. It was a nice sized bird for us, though.
Then, I brined the chicken in a couple of bottles of Rocktoberfest Lager, some onion salt, and some garlic salt. I only brined for an hour or two. I think for a brine to really work, it should be longer than that, so I don't know how much this helped with flavor. Next time I will try to remember to let the brine work longer.
Next, I got out a can of Boulder Beer Company's Hazed and Infused. I like this beer. It is an easy drinking, relatively low ABV beer. It is nice and hoppy without being overly bitter. I drank half of it and let the remainder sit in the can for awhile.
I took the bird out of the brine and patted it dry. I applied a rub that a co-worker had recently given me: "Fiorella's Jack Stack Barbecue KC All Purpose Rub."
While doing all this, the grill was preheating to around 400 degrees.
Then, I stuck the half-full can of beer up the chicken's butt, and placed the chicken over the middle burner on the grill. I turned off this middle burner and used indirect heating from the other two burners. I let the bird cook for an hour before even looking at it. When I opened the grill lid it looked like this:
I let it go a bit longer, then checked the temperature with a meat thermometer. The internal temperature was above 170 in every spot I put the probe, so I decided it was done.
Total, I think I let the bird cook for about an hour and a half at around 375.
After I took the bird out, I let it sit for awhile (10 minutes?) and then carefully took the beer can out.
And how was it? Awesome. I loved it. It was so moist and juicy. The skin was perfectly golden brown and the rub tasted amazing. To be honest, I didn't perceive must of a beer flavor, but it sure was juicy.
And so, my first ever attempt at Beer Can Chicken was a huge success. I am going to do this again.
Or maybe ... next time I will make Bacon Beer Can Chicken.