Beer Can Chicken recipe for the 4th of July.

Chicken is sometimes considered a “boring” protein. We say if you’re on the “chicken is mundane” train, you’re just not chugging toward the right delicacy destination. Americans have been drinking beer and eating chicken since the days of our founding fathers. (We can’t actually back the up with sources.) So this Independence Day, take a break from burgers and drop those hot dogs. Here’s an awesome recipe to get you starting on spicing up your chicken this summer- and we’re delighted to declare it involves beer.

Beer Can Chicken Recipe

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 Whole Chicken
  • Olive Oil
  • Seasonings/ Herbs (of your choice)
  • 1 12 oz. can of beer (or soda)
  • Aluminum Foil or Foil Tray


  1. Preheat grill using indirect heat – ideally you will want the temperature around 350 degrees.
  2. Make a tray with edges out of aluminum foil big enough to set the check on and catch any drippings to avoid fire. (or use a store bought foil tray)
  3. Start with a whole chicken.
  4. Remove guts. (which you can boil with some salt and pepper and they are delicious)
  5. Wash chicken inside and out and pat dry.
  6. Rub with olive oil.
  7. Season inside and out . . . use your imagination . . . from salt and pepper to an herb blend or even rib rub.  This is the best part since you can make it different every time.
  8. Open a 12 ounce can of beer (can use soda too) and pour out (or drink) a quarter of it.
  9. Using your opened can, make a couple of additional holes in the top of the can.
  10. Stuff the can AND the cavity of the chicken with herbs of your choice. (We also highly recommend including garlic cloves.)
  11. Insert the can into a beer can chicken rack or, in absence of the rack just set the chicken on the can, using some force to stuff the can inside.  If you don’t have a rack you can just balance the chicken on the can by engaging the legs.
  12. Take the flap of skin where to neck was and cover the opening . . . creating a steaming effect.  You can also put a chunk of onion in the hole.
  13. Set the foil tray you made on the grill and set the chicken on top of it.
  14. Close the lid and cook for 1 hour 30 minutes, turning 180 degrees half way through.
  15. Take chicken off grill and let stand for 10 to 15 minutes before carving.

We didn’t want to include this as an official step in the recipe, but now would be a good time to enjoy the rest of the beer in that six-pack, perhaps while watching fireworks. While this unique main dish goes great with nearly any side, we recommend adding some potato or macaroni salad, corn on the cob, or any number of other side dishes to demonstrate your patriotism.

Have a different recipe slated for the 4th? Not to worry! We love this recipe because you can put so many different spins on it- use Mexican seasonings and serve it alongside rice and beans, or throw in Greek herbs and whip up a Greek salad to go with. The cuisine possibilities are endless. Oh, and in case we didn’t mention, it involves beer. Prepare it for your 4th of July feast this year- what is more American than chicken and beer?