10 Best Beer Can Chicken Recipes for the Pellet Grills (AKA Drunk Chicken)

For a few classic and creative ideas for beer can chicken recipes to grill outside, please read on.

Best Beer Can Chicken Recipes for the Grill

Best Beer Can Chicken Pellet Grill Recipes (AKA Drunk Chicken)

1 Cajun Drunk Chicken with Frank’s Red Hot Sauce

Let’s start off with an absolute gem of a recipe from the Frank’s Red Hot website.

What we love about this recipe (apart from the Frank’s Red Hot Sauce itself) is it calls for a simple but delicious injection made from beer, BBQ sauce, Cajun spices and Frank’s Red Hot Cayenne. You inject the bird repeatedly making sure for a tender and flavourful result.

Along with that spicy Cajun seasoning there’s no denying the delicious and unique flavours in this beer can chicken recipe.

Placing fresh thyme in the beer can for extra flavour is a great idea too.


2 Tom Kerridge’s Jerk Beer Can Chicken

Another great way to pack in flavour to your beer can chicken recipes is to brine it in a simple water and salt solution overnight in advance.

This great beer can chicken recipe from Tom Kerridge means seasoning with a homemade Jamaican Jerk spice rub and eventually coating your chicken in a delicious homemade glaze made from honey, soy sauce and hot sauce.

You really have to try it to appreciate the level of flavour!

3 Traeger Beer Can Chicken Recipe with Lemon & Rosemary

The addition of citrusy lemon and delicious rosemary really take beer can chicken to a much more aromatic, herby level.

Smoked in your pellet grill for 1 hour over Traeger’s recommended Bold Blend pellets this is a real must try for chicken lovers everywhere.

4 Bacon Wrapped Beer Can Chicken

This is one of our own recipes, and the addition of bacon helps flavour the chicken and keep it moist.

Watch the whole process with step by step instructions on our Instagram recipe video below.

Smoked BBQ Beer Can Chicken

5 Pit Boss Champion Beer Can Chicken Recipe

This is a simple but effective recipe from pellet grill giants Pit Boss. It only requires a few ingredients as they recommend using their tasty Pit Boss Poultry Rub.

Pit Boss BBQ Spices

Obviously you can use your favourite BBQ Poultry Rub. They also recommend using their Hickory Blend Wood Pellets which are definitely worth a try too.

If you want a no nonsense, straightforward but tasty approach to grilling beer can chicken then this could be the recipe for you.

6 Big Green Egg Radler Beer Can Chicken

This recipe from Big Green Egg recommends using Radler beer for an extra light and citrusy taste.

Adding a lemon, a lime and a great homemade rub makes for even more flavour again. If you want to try a light summery approach to beer can chicken, then this recipe will suit you down to the ground.

7 Spicy Korean BBQ Beer Can Chicken

For a really different take on classic beer can chicken, try Korean BBQ recipe like this one from PitmasterX.

The fiery, fruity, garlicky tastes of Korean BBQ are always great with chicken, but when they are added to beer can chicken the result is something of a showstopper.

Served with chilli butter and Korean BBQ sauce this is sure to wow even your most discerning guests.

The homemade Korean BBQ sauce alone is worth a go.

Spicy Korean BBQ Beer Can Chicken Recipe

8 Weber Irish Beer Can Chicken with Stout Sauce

This tasty twist on beer can chicken comes directly from the Weber website and is Irish-themed.

You brine the whole chicken overnight in a mixture of beer, lemon, rosemary, water, salt, pepper and sugar. This packs in a heap of flavour while also making sure your chicken doesn’t dry out in the BBQ or smoker.

The stout sauce has great depth of flavour too with coffee, shallots, honey and sugar.

You don’t have to wait to St Patrick’s Day to try it out!

9 Peking Style Beer Butt Chicken

Traditionally Peking Duck has been enjoyed as a delicacy, but this approach is a great twist on classic American beer can chicken and Peking duck.

All the flavours of Chinese cooking are here; garlic, ginger, Chinese 5 spice, hoisin sauce, oyster sauce, Sichuan peppercorns, the list goes on and on.

The glaze is both sweet and savoury, and just downright delicious.

This recipe suggests doing your chicken on a gas grill, but you can do it however you like.

10 Mexican Drunk Chicken Recipe

Finally we have the Mexican beer can chicken recipe served in tacos with tasty crunchy slaw.

The whole chicken is marinaded overnight in the classic Mexican flavours of lime, chilli, cilantro (coriander), garlic etc for extra flavour.

You then cook the chicken over indirect heat for around 2 hours the next day, shred it and serve it with tortillas and a crunchy homemade coleslaw.

A great recipe for any occasion!

FAQ’s About Beer Can Chicken

What is the Best Liquid to use for Beer Can Chicken?

As the name suggests, beer is the best liquid for beer can chicken. As for the type of beer, it’s best to use a lager or citrus flavoured IPA so the flavour is light and not overpowering.

At what temperature is a beer can chicken done?

All chicken needs to reach an internal temperature of 165F or 74C to be ready to eat.

How do you get Beer Can Chicken to Stand Up?

You need to make sure your tin of beer is only half full or it will be difficult to balance the chicken on it. To make life easier you can buy a beer can chicken roaster to balance it on.

Why is Beer used to Cook Chicken?

Chicken is often cooked in beer or white wine to add extra flavour that doesn’t overpower the chicken itself. Chicken has a mild flavour which is enhanced by the zesty notes of a citrusy IPA or white wine. The alcohol evaporates but leaves a lovely fragrance behind.

Beer Can Chicken in the Oven with Vegetables

You can definitely do beer can chicken in the oven, but obviously you won’t get the same smoky flavour. It works well over vegetables because all those lovely juices help flavour your potatoes and vegetables underneath.

If you are looking for a good recipe try here.


How Long to Cook a 5 lb Beer Can Chicken

If you are going to grill your beer can chicken at a medium high heat, it will take a 5 lb or 2.3kg chicken somewhere between 1 hour to 1 and a half hours. You will know it is safe to eat when the internal temperature registers at least 165F or 74C.

If you want to roast your 5 lb beer can chicken in the oven at 375F or 190C, it will take around 2 hours to come up to a final temperature of 165F or 74C. Always rely on the internal temperature of chicken and not on exact timings.

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