Whole Bird BlissWhole chickens are so much cheaper and prepping and serving can be simplified by cooking it whole and serving with sides efficiently cooked using the same method. And sure we can all bake a chicken in the traditional oven and tandem-bake the potatoes, but we can do better than that. You can watch Gordon Ramsay or Martha Stewart show you how to cut up a chicken in five easy steps later—here’s a super-simple way to use that whole bird right now—no disassembly required!
Beer Can BBQIngredients
1 medium (4-5 lbs) chicken
2 tablespoons olive, avocado or other healthful oil
1 can or bottle of beer-IPAs need not apply—too bitter for cooking. Ambers and lagers are perfect
1 tablespoon sea salt, kosher salt or Himalayan salt—or maybe try a gourmet smoked salt to amplify that fresh-grilled, crispy-carbolized chicken
1 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 tablespoon dried thyme
DirectionsFirst, get your workspace ready and remember food safety, washing hands and tools when appropriate. Empty the bird of giblets, rinse and use a paper towel to pat dry, then set aside.
While the grill gets medium-hot, drink half the beer (that’s all you’ll need for this recipe) as you mix the salt, pepper and thyme. Rub the entire bird inside and out with the seasoning mix, then gently oil the chicken.
Now you’re ready to get this bird on grill. Place the half beer on a flat tray and gently lower the bird, posterior down, onto the can or bottle and then place it on the cool side of the grill rather than directly over the flame. Drop some halved russets or ears of corn on the grill alongside the chicken. Cover the lid and plan on about 1.5 hours of cook time—check with the meat thermometer when you turn the sides.
Carefully pull off the grill at 165 degrees, taking care when removing the can or bottle since it will be hot. Now the chicken is ready to serve whole for center-of-table carving or stripped and shredded for sandwiches, wraps or salads.
Of course you can do all this in 1.25 hours in a 350 degree oven, but where’s the fun in that?