Co-op Blog

Get Your Grill On (a Beer Can)

With summer well on the way, now is the time to get grilling. Cooking food outside makes for easy clean-up and results in delicious, charred flavors. Don’t stop at the obvious — like ribs, vegetable kebabs, and steaks — why not try a novel way of grilling: the beer can chicken.

While it may seem intimidating, beer can chicken is a relatively simple process that can yield great rewards. The steam from the brew flavors the meat and holds in moisture. The can props the chicken up, so it roasts evenly—no scorching, no flipping, no stress. It’s a fun recipe to make with friends and family. Plus, you get to drink some beer. Many recommend using a light lager style beer, but amber and Scotch ales can lend deeper, more complex malty flavors — try Oskar Blues’ Old Chub Scotch Ale or Backwoods Brewing’s Copperline Amber for a twist.

grilledchickSavor the flavor of locally raised, free range chickens! Our Meat Department sources local and organic poultry from Draper Valley Farms in Mount Vernon, WA. Ranger Whole Body Chickens (free range, non-GMO) are now on sale for $1.69 per lb, regularly $2.39 per lb; and organic whole chickens are $3.19 per lb.

Check out our expanding selection of BBQ sauces and grilling accessories. Don’t forget the grilling essential that is our Co-op brand Galen’s Classic Meat Rub, an expertly blended gluten-free medley of organic brown sugar and spices. Use this versatile rub on chicken, pork, and beef to create complex and satisfying flavors with sweet and heat. Feel like grilling something a bit smaller? Organic Draper Valley chicken legs are on sale for $1.99 per lb, and wings are $3.29 per lb. Use the same following ingredients to create a quick marinade for wings and drumsticks, simply grill and enjoy.

Beer Can Chicken Recipe

  • 1 12 oz. can beer, such as Everybody’s Local Lager
  • 1 whole chicken, 3.5 lb – 4 lb
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons Galen’s Classic Meat Rub

Directions: Pour out/drink half of beer in can and set aside. Prepare grill for high, indirect heat, and fit with grill pan (for a charcoal grill, bank coals on 1 side of grill and put drip pan on empty side; for a gas grill, leave 1 burner turned off and place drip pan over unlit burner). Add water to pan to a depth of half an inch.

Remove neck and giblets from chicken, reserve for future use if desired. Rinse chicken inside and out, and pat dry with paper towels. Rub chicken lightly with oil then rub inside and out with salt, pepper and dry rub. Set aside. Place beer can on a solid surface. Grabbing a chicken leg in each hand, plunk the bird cavity over the beer can. Transfer the bird-on-a-can to your grill and place in the center of the grate, balancing the bird on its 2 legs and the can like a tripod. Place can and chicken on grill over indirect heat, with no coals or burners on directly under the bird. Grill chicken, covered, until cooked through — about 60-75 minutes — or until an instant-read, internal thermometer registers 165°F in the breast area and 180°F in the thickest part of thigh. Let chicken rest 10 minutes before carving.

By: Claire

ClaireClaire Harlock Garber loves to eat and drink and write about it. She has worked in the food industry for nearly a decade and was on staff at the Skagit Valley Co-op from 2010-2018, writing the regular columns Skagit Brew Corner, The Cheese Whisperer, The Bounty of Bulk, and What's Dippin' in the Well for the Co-op's blog, as well as articles for the Natural Enquirer newsletter.