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Grilled Beer Can Chicken with Spicy Chili Rub

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  • Prep 15 min
  • Total 1 hr 45 min
  • Servings 4
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Amazing but true, propping an intensely seasoned chicken atop a can filled with beer, then grilling, produces a remarkably moist and flavourful bird.
Created Jun 5, 2013
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  • 1 (3 1/2 to 4-lb/1.5 to 2 kg) whole roasting chicken
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) paprika
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) seasoned salt
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) cumin
  • 1/4 tsp ( 1 mL) pepper
  • 1/4 tsp (1 mL) ground red pepper (cayenne)
  • 1 can (355 mL) beer


  • 1
    If using charcoal grill, place drip pan directly under grilling area and arrange coals around edge of firebox. Heat coals or gas grill for indirect heat.
  • 2
    Remove and discard neck and giblets from chicken cavity. Rinse chicken with cold water; pat dry with paper towels.
  • 3
    In small bowl, combine all remaining ingredients except beer; mix well. Rub mixture on inside and over outside of chicken, using all of mixture.
  • 4
    Open beer can; with can opener, make several other openings in top. Measure out 2/3 cup beer; discard or reserve for another use. Spray outside of half-full can of beer with nonstick cooking spray; place in ungreased shallow roasting pan. Carefully place chicken cavity over can, pushing until chicken balances in pan.
  • 5
    When grill is heated, using tongs and pancake turner, remove chicken and can from pan; place on grill directly over drip pan, making sure chicken is balanced. Cover grill; cook 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours or until chicken juices run clear and thermometer inserted in thickest part of thigh registers 180ºF.
  • 6
    With thick hot pads and tongs, carefully remove chicken and can from grill; place in clean baking pan or on serving platter. Twist can to remove from chicken; discard can. Let chicken stand 10 minutes before carving.

Expert Tips

  • Tip 1
    Oven Directions: To bake chicken, place on can in 15x10x1-inch baking pan; bake at 375 F. on lowest oven rack using times above as a guide.
  • Tip 2
    Tip: Indirect cooking methods will vary depending on whether you have a charcoal or gas grill, how the burners on your gas grill are arranged and what you are cooking. Just remember, indirect means that the food is not directly over the heat. On a gas grill with two burners, that means cooking over the side of the grill that is not turned on. On a one-burner gas grill, cook on low setting. On a charcoal grill, it means the food is cooked over a drip pan and not directly over the coals.
  • Tip 3
    Tip: If desired, tie or skewer the legs together before grilling.
  • Tip 4
    Substitution: Use 355 mL can of gingerale or lemon-lime soda pop instead of the beer.

Nutrition Information

425 Calories, 24g Total Fat, 47g Protein, 5g Total Carbs, 3g Sugars

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 4 Servings
Total Fat
Saturated Fat
Total Carbs
Dietary Fiber
% Daily Value*:
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
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