Beer Can Chicken In The Oven

LAST UPDATED: Mar 03, 2020 | PUBLISHED: Aug 29, 2019 | By: Julie Blanner

Whether you roast Beer Can Chicken in the Oven or sear it on the grill, this Beer Can Chicken Recipe is moist and flavorful on the inside with a seasoned rub that creates a crispy caramelized exterior. Beer Chicken retains the moisture of beer for a delicious dinner that’s perfect for game day and beyond! 

White platter featuring a beer can roasted chicken with golden skin. Blue linen napkin to side. #beercanchicken

Beer Can Chicken In The Oven

Here’s something you might not know about me. While I am not a huge sports fan, I really love the experiences and celebrations of game day. Chris and the girls love going to local games of all kinds, and game day traditions are a big part of our lives. Much more than the games themselves, I love the game day food. Who can blame me? 

That’s where this Beer Can Chicken Recipe comes in. I love creating a game day experience at home, and for those lazy fall weekends where we’re at home watching games or entertaining friends, this beer chicken is the ultimate easy dinner in the oven or on the grill!

Looking inside range at a beer can chicken in the oven, inside a white roasting pan. #beerchicken #beercanchickeninoven

The Best Beer Can Chicken Recipe

When we lived in Kansas City, I used to order the beer can chicken sandwich at Gram and Dun- it made the chicken so juicy and succulent. That was the original inspiration when we started making this beer can chicken recipe! It’s an old school recipe that creates a delicious meal- what’s not to love?  

While it is possible to simply rest your beer chicken right onto the can of beer, you can also buy a beer can chicken rack specifically for this purpose. It’s something to consider if you think you’ll be making this chicken often- it does stabilize the chicken and you don’t have to worry about spills. 

White platter featuring a beer can roasted chicken with golden skin. Blue linen napkin to side. #beercanchicken

Beer Chicken Ingredients

The simpler, the better! And if you want, you get to drink a little beer as you’re preparing your beer can chicken. How can you go wrong? 

  • One whole chicken – Ours was around 4 lbs- just make sure that you’re getting plenty of leftovers. Pulled chicken leftovers are great for so many next-day recipes! 
  • vegetable oil – most any type of oil will do.
  • salt – don’t be afraid of the salt in this recipe! Use a touch more than you normally might, because that crispy salted skin doesn’t happen on its own.
  • pepper – again- don’t be afraid to use a slightly heavier hand here. 
  • poultry seasoning – I love the flexibility of using your own poultry rub. You can use any combination of spices that suit you, but I have suggestions below to make your own beer can chicken rub.
  • One can of beer – use a big can! It gives your chicken more stability. I like to use whatever I have on hand- in this case it was an IPA. What you’re looking for here is the moisture content, not necessarily complexity with added flavors.

Whole chicken resting on a can of beer, on a gold sheetpan. #beercanchicken

Beer Can Chicken Rub

This dry rub recipe is so simple and can be completely customized to your tastes. These are the seasonings that I combined to create a crave-worthy beer chicken rub. The specific amounts of this poultry rub deserves its own post- coming very soon! 

  • dried sage
  • dried thyme
  • dried marjoram
  • dried rosemary
  • ground nutmeg
  • finely ground black pepper

White platter featuring a beer can roasted chicken with golden skin. Blue linen napkin to side. #beercanchicken

How to Make Beer Can Chicken in Oven

You can absolutely make this beer can chicken right in your oven! It’s going to create a juicy, succulent bird whether you’re cooking outside or in.

  • Open your beer and feel free to drink a little- I didn’t because I was preparing this recipe for the blog in the middle of a work day! 

Can of beer inside a white roasting pan with beer at the bottom of the pan, on a white surface.

  • Prepare chicken by removing any giblets, etc, and discard. Rinse the chicken and pat dry- be thorough here! Keeping the exterior dry as you prep is important. Next, place the beer can chicken directly into a roasting pan. In fact, you can pour 1/3 of your can of beer into the base of the roasting pan. Why not add that extra moisture? 

Raw whole chicken in a white roasting pan, resting on a beer can with beer at the base of the pan.

  • Rub the chicken with your vegetable oil. Use your salt, pepper and dry rub all over the inside and outside of the bird. Set aside.

Raw whole chicken in a white roasting pan, resting on a beer can with beer at the base of the pan.

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place your chicken into the oven and roast for one hour and fifteen minutes. Check your temp with a meat thermometer- you’ll want to see 180 degrees in the thickest part of the thigh, 165 in the breast.

Looking inside range at a beer can chicken in the oven, inside a white roasting pan. #beerchicken #beercanchickeninoven

  • Let rest for 10 minutes or so before you carve and serve. You can even make a loose tent over the chicken to create a moisture trap.

Looking inside range at a beer can chicken in the oven, inside a white roasting pan. #beerchicken #beercanchickeninoven

How to Make Beer Chicken On The Grill

  1. Follow the first two steps (above) to prepare your chicken.  
  2. Open your beer and drink a little- you don’t want it to be too full.

Whole roasted beer can chicken on grill. #beercanchickenrecipe #beerchicken

  1. Fit your chicken over the beer can (which should be about half full at this point) and place the can onto the center of your grill grate. Use indirect heat for about 75 minutes, with the grill at medium-high heat. This temperature and placement works perfectly for me each time- you’ll want to check that the internal temp is 165 degrees in the breast.
  2. Let rest for 10 minutes before carving and serving- you can remove the beer can once you take it off the grill.

Whole roasted beer can chicken on grill. #beercanchickenrecipe #beerchicken

Smoked Beer Can Chicken Recipe

Smoking this beer can chicken is very simple! Simply follow the oven directions above- if you have an electric smoker, set the temp for 350 degrees and cook until the meat thermometer shows the appropriate temperature, approximately 75 minutes. 

What Can I Use Instead of Beer? 

There are lots of options! Just to clarify, this chicken isn’t filled with the taste of beer- the beer itself creates moisture in the cavity of the chicken. Any liquid would work here- try it with chicken or vegetable broth or even lemon lime soda if you’d prefer to cook without alcohol.

Verical image of roasted chicken resting on a beer can, placed on a gold sheetpan on top of range. #beercanchicken

What to Serve with This Beer Can Chicken Recipe

This beer chicken works beautifully with all types of side salads and oven-friendly side dishes. Here’s just a few ideas you’ll enjoy! 

White platter featuring a beer can roasted chicken with golden skin. Blue linen napkin to side. #beercanchicken

If you love this easy Chicken Recipe you’ll love

What are your favorite game day foods? Do you love entertaining friends and family to watch games at home? If you create this beer can chicken in the oven, I’d love to hear from you! Please come back and leave a review and rate the recipe. 

White platter featuring a beer can roasted chicken with golden skin. Blue linen napkin to side. #beercanchicken

Beer Can Chicken in the Oven

Whether you roast Beer Can Chicken in the Oven or sear it on the grill, this Beer Can Chicken Recipe is moist and flavorful on the inside with a seasoned rub that creates a crispy caramelized exterior. Beer Chicken retains the moisture of beer for a delicious dinner that's perfect for game day and beyond! 
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Course: Entree, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings (hover to scale): 6 people
Calories: 345kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 chicken whole
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 3 tbsp poultry seasoning
  • 1 can beer

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  • Prepare chicken by removing any giblets, etc, and discard. Rinse the chicken and pat dry- be thorough here! Keeping the exterior dry as you prep is important. 
  • Rub the chicken with your vegetable oil. Use your salt, pepper and dry rub all over the inside and outside of the bird. Set aside.
  • Open your beer and place the beer can directly inside the cavity of the chicken.
  • Next, place the beer can chicken directly into a roasting pan. Pour 1/3 of your can of beer into the base of the roasting pan.
  • Place your chicken into the oven and roast for one hour and fifteen minutes. Check your temp with a meat thermometer- you'll want to see 180 degrees in the thickest part of the thigh, 165 in the breast.
  • Let rest for 10 minutes or so before you carve and serve. You can even make a loose tent over the chicken to create a moisture trap.

Notes

  • Be sure to pat the chicken dry before adding oil and seasoning! 
  • don't be afraid of the salt and pepper in this recipe! Use a touch more than you normally might, because that crispy salted skin doesn't happen on its own.
  • I love the flexibility of using your own poultry rub. You can use any combination of spices that suit you.
  • Use any kind of beer you have on hand! 

Nutrition

Calories: 345kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 95mg | Sodium: 2417mg | Potassium: 271mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 236IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 38mg | Iron: 2mg
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