Beer Can Chicken

Classic beer can chicken done on the grill. Easy recipe for BBQ chicken. with a rub and sauce

I love grilling season. The truth is I grill all year long which is no small feat in Canada. In the winter months I will bundle up in my winter coat and toque to cook on the grill. Even though I will fire up the BBQ any month of the year, there is nothing like those warm summer months, sitting on the deck, sipping a nice cool beverage, while meat is cooking on the grill.

A classic BBQ recipe is beer can chicken and it is amazing how simple it is. Stick a chicken on an open can of beer or other beverage, place it on the grill at medium/high heat and close the lid. Come back in about 90 minutes. It is that easy. I like to add some of my favourite BBQ rub and sauce for added flavour.

I got these little stands from Dollarama, a Canadian dollar store. They are cheap and provide a stable base for the chicken and the perfect holder for the can.

Rub the chicken with your favourite BBQ spice rub. Here is the recipe for my Basic BBQ Rub.  Heat the grill to medium/high heat so that the temperature of the grill is around 375F.

Near the end of the cooking time, baste the chicken with some BBQ sauce and close the lid for a few more minutes so the sauce glazes on the skin of the bird. Cook until the internal temperature of the chicken is 165F.

Beer Can Chicken on the Grill

5 out of 5
5 reviews
Classic beer can chicken done on the grill. Easy recipe for BBQ chicken with a spicy rub and sauce.
Servings: 2 people


  • 1 large roasting chicken (about 4 pounds)
  • 1 can of beer or other beverage
  • 3 tbsp your favourite spice rub
  • 1/4 cup bbq sauce


  • Set your grill to medium/high so the grill heats up to around 375F.
  • Open a can of beer, or other beverage, and set the bird on top of the can, ensuring that the chicken is on well. Use a beer can chicken stand if you have one.
  • Rub the chicken with BBQ spice rub. Place the bird on the grill, set up on the stand or can and close the lid.
  • Cook until the internal temperature of the chicken is  165F. It should take around 75-90 minutes. Make sure to check occasionally for any flare ups.
  • WIth about 5 minutes remaining, baste the chicken with BBQ sauce. Close the lid again and cook until the internal temperature of the chicken is 165F.

How to Grill Beer Can Chicken


Classic beer can chicken done on the grill. Easy recipe for BBQ chicken. with a rub and sauce

Did you try this recipe?

Leave a comment and let me know how it turned out. Or, take a picture to share on Instagram and tag me @theblackpeppercorn.

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Recipe Rating


  • Absolutely delicious… I used lemon lime soda stream. I rubbed lemon and pepper seasoning generously with olive oil… its was super moist. Excellent recipe. Thank you 😀

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  • 5 stars
    I tried this yesterday and it turned out absolutely perfect. Chicken was so moist with tons of flavor.
    It was easy but a lot of fun. My wife and I worked together with the prep. Definitely a success!

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  • 5 stars
    Such a simple and delicious recipe! Chicken was moist and favorable.

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  • I tried your recipe and it’s great. I injured my brid with Texas Pete . You not get the hot burn. I also added a foil pan. Poured about half can of beer in it. This does away with flare ups.

    • Reply
    • 5 stars
      Yes. I use a 9″ diameter pie plate to set my BCC on to catch the drippings, prevents flare ups and captures the juice for gravy, sometimes I put small potatoes and onions in there as well. The little handles on the pie plate allow me to easily rotate the whole works every 15 minutes or so.

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  • 5 stars
    Love beer butt chicken, the meat is always so moist and full of flavor. The hubby always adds a whole bunch of fresh herbs inside the beer mix before grilling them. I’ll be very keen to try your BBQ rub. Your chickens look scrumptious

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  • You forgot to mention that after you open the beer can, you are supposed to drink half of it (or dispose of it in some way). 😉 Have you experimented with any other liquids? Honestly, I have not noticed the liquid imparting any flavor to it and I’ve used various beers, wine, juices and even plain water.

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  • I’ve been meaning to do this since its gotten warm!

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  • fun recipe! i’ve heard of beer can chicken but never made it, + i’ve actually been looking for a recipe. thanks for sharing!

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  • I don’t know what I’m more impressed with the gorgeous beer can chicken or the fact you go those great stands at the dollar store!! Wow!! You made so many of them…. what a great feast! 🙂 Well done and Happy Sunday!

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  • I love those nifty stands. I haven’t seen any of those in Australia.

    I agree with Bonnie about the potty but the chicken TASTES so good I don’t care. 🙂

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  • I always laugh when I see beer can chicken…they just look like little people to me (sitting on the potty:)! Kidding aside, these look so appetizing! The photography is some of your best! This will be my go-to for beer can chicken! Thanks!

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  • this is my FAVORITE part of summer!

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