The first time I’ve ever had Beer Butt Chicken was at a Thanksgiving dinner with my friends in Melbourne. My friend was shocked that I’ve never even heard of it! Apparently it’s a super common thing for people to make over the fire during camping season. I’ve never been much of a camper, so that probably explains why I’ve never had it. Nevertheless, the chicken came out amazingly moist and so easy to make! I decided to try my hand at making it tonight in the oven with a few tweaks. It was GREAT. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! The recipe looks super long, but I promise its really easy. It just took me longer to describe the steps than I expected.
Servings: 3-4 people, depending on how big your chicken is
Recipe adapted from: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/14531/beer-butt-chicken/
- Half an onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
- 4 peppercorns
- 1 can beer (any beer will do)
- 1/2 stick butter (60g), melted
- 1 Tbsp salt
- 1 Tbsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning (or just thyme or rosemary)
- 1 whole chicken
- Veggies (you can use whatever veggies you like. These are a few of my favs to roast):
- 2 carrots, diced large
- 4 cloves garlic, whole or roughly chopped
- 1 large onion, diced large
- 1/4 Jap/kent pumpkin, diced large
- Wash the outside of the beer can and pat dry
- Open up the beer and drink half of it.
- Add the diced onion, garlic and peppercorns into the beer. Gently swish it around to mix it.
- Rinse your whole chicken and pat dry.
- Before stuffing the chicken, wrap aluminum foil around the outside of your beer can (don’t cover the top or bottom of the can) and grease the outside of the can with some oil (super important for later when you remove the can).
- Stuff the can of beer into the butt of the chicken, about halfway through the chicken. The chicken and beer should sit upright. Put the chicken in the middle of a deep baking pan.
- Preheat the oven to 175˚C (350˚F). Change the racks if needed to accommodate for the chicken.
- In a separate bowl, melt the butter and add in the garlic powder, paprika, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning. Mix well.
- Undermine/loosen the skin around the chicken. Add 1/2 of the butter mixture under the skin on all sides. Massage the mixture under the skin to evenly distribute around the whole chicken.
- Rub the rest of the butter mix on the outside of the chicken.
- Distribute your veggies (carrot, pumpkin, onion, garlic) around the chicken into the pan. Drizzle some olive oil, salt and pepper over the veg. Mix.
- Use a couple of the veggies and plug the hole of the neck of the chicken (optional. This traps the beer steam inside to make the chicken more moist and flavourful).
- Put the whole pan into the preheated oven and roast until the skin is crisp and the meat is no longer pink at the bone and the juices run clear. The timing will depend on the size of your chicken. I bought a moderately sized chicken and it took 1 hour. Larger chickens can take 1.5 hours. I suggest you check on it at 45minutes and keep it in for longer if needed.
- An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, near the bone should read 180 degrees F (82 degrees C).
- When it’s done, remove it from the oven and let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before carving.
- If you slice it when hot, the moisture will evaporate and dry out your chicken. by letting it rest, you’re keeping the juices inside and allowing it to cool at the same time.
- While the chicken is resting, make a gravy by straining the juices from the pan into a skillet over medium heat. Empty the contents of the beer can into the skillet and mix. Simmer the juices until it thickens to a gravy texture. You can add a tablespoon of cornstarch with cold water to help the sauce thicken (make sure you mix the cornstarch and water in a separate bowl before adding to the pan).
- I recommend cutting the pumpkin into bigger pieces than the rest of the veggies so they don’t become too soft in the oven.
- If you are having trouble getting your chicken to stand up, apparently you can purchase “chicken racks” that are designed just for this purpose to keep your chicken and beer upright.
- Here’s another alternate recipe that uses oranges and rosemary! Something to try for next time: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/201948/beer-butt-rosemary-chicken/