Sunday Supper: Beer Can Chicken

Sunday Supper

Cooking projects for people who'd like nothing more than to spend a sunday afternoon surrounded by the wonderful aromas of the kitchen.

Sunday Supper: Beer Can Chicken
  • Yield:4
  • Active time:20 minutes
  • Total time:1 hour 20 minutes

[Photograph: Sydney Oland]

Beer can chicken is an iconic summer dish. This version, however, is roasted instead of thrown on the grill. The theory is that the beer steams inside the bird, making the final product extremely moist. Whether or not that's true, the beer definitely adds flavor, and the addition of a few aromatics takes that even farther. Light beers are the best choice for this dish; I recommend PBR.

About the author:
Sydney Oland lives in Boston where she completed her graduate work in Gastronomy and Food Studies in 2009, after a Professional Chef diploma from the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts. Find more information at (or read


  • 4 large red skinned potatoes
  • 7 cloves garlic
  • 1 bunch thyme, divided
  • Olive oil
  • Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
  • 1 5 pound chicken
  • 1 16 ounce can of beer


  1. 1.

    Preheat oven to 425 [°]. Cut each potato into pieces 6 pieces and place in 9X13 inch baking dish. Add 6 cloves garlic and sprigs of thyme, drizzle with olive oil and toss with salt and pepper.

  2. 2.

    Rinse and dry chicken. Open beer and drink half, add extra garlic clove and a few sprigs of thyme to beer. Push potatoes to each end of baking dish and place open beer in center. Chop 1 teaspoon worth of thyme leaves. Drizzle chicken with olive oil and sprinkle with chopped thyme, salt and pepper. Carefully ease beer can into chicken cavity and sit in center of baking dish surrounded by potatoes.

  3. 3.

    Roast chicken until internal temperature reaches 160[°], about 90 minutes. Allow chicken to rest 10 minutes before carving and serve with potatoes and more beer.

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