Beer Can Chicken

Prep Time

15 minutes

Cooking Time

1 - 1 1/2 hours


1 whole pasture raised chicken

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 open, half-full can of beer, room temperature

1 tablespoon kosher salt

2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 tablespoon dry thyme

1 tablespoon black pepper


1.  Prepare grill for heating.  If you are using charcoal, put the coals on one side of the grill.  If you are using a gas grill, fire up only half the burners.  If you are roasting in an oven, preheat to 350 degrees and use the bottom tray of the oven.

2.  Remove neck and giblets from the cavity of the chicken.  Rub the chicken all over with a mixture of the olive oil, salt, thyme and pepper.

3.  Make sure the beer can is open and half-full.  Lower the chicken on to the open can, so that the chicken is sitting upright, with the can in it's cavity (yes, really!).  Place the chicken on the cool side of the grill, using the legs and beer can to keep the bird upright.

4.  Cover the grill and walk away.  After one hour check the chicken and refresh coals if necessary.  The chicken is done when a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads at least 160 degrees.  The time will depend totally on the size of the bird so if it is not done keep checking every 10 minutes or so.

5.  Carefully transfer the chicken to a tray or pan.  Be aware that the chick and the beer can will be very hot.  Grab the neck using tongs and slide a metal spatula underneath to move the bird to a tray.  Allow to rest for 10 minutes then remove the can.

6.  Carve the chicken and serve.