Beer Can Chicken on a Traeger Grill – Easy Recipe For Newbies

Beer can chicken on a Trager grill

How excited are you now that you finally have your own Traeger Grill? Yes, we know a shiny new Traeger Grill is a beautiful sight. But, we're guessing you are just itching to dirty it up a little and use it. And we have the perfect recipe for you try first. Beer can chicken provides the most delectable taste and when everyone sees it, no one will ever guess you're a newbie on the grill.

Beer Can Chicken on a Traeger Grill

What You Need to Make Beer Can Chicken

This ingredient list is short and sweet. Be sure to gather the ingredients ahead of time to be sure you're ready to go at grilling time.

  • Traeger Grill and Grilling Accessories
  • Wood Pellets
  • One Whole Chicken, Three to Five Pounds
  • Traeger Chicken Rub
  • One Can of Beer

Pro Tip: When you are shopping for Traeger wood pellets, we recommend Mesquite pellets for this recipe, which gives you a strong smoky flavor. However, most pellets complement chicken. Alder and Apple are good alternatives if you are looking for something a little milder, that isn't too strong to overwhelm the chicken's flavor. Cherry and pecan are good if you're looking for a more flavorful option.

Step by Step Instructions

Prepare Your Chicken

Start by preparing your chicken, even before preparing your grill. You want everything ready before you even turn your grill on. To prepare your chicken, you'll want to tuck the wing tips back, as well as truss the chicken legs together. To truss a chicken, means you need to tie it with butcher's twine to make it easier to work with.

Season Your Chicken

For the next step, you'll want to generously season your chicken with Traeger Chicken Rub, inside and out. The Chicken Rub combines citrus and black pepper flavors to really bring out the flavor of your chicken. It comes in a shaker so it can easily be sprinkled on your meat.

Add the Beer

Next, you'll want to add the beer to your chicken. Open your can of beer and place it inside the chicken (still in the can), by sliding the chicken down on top of the open can. Only 1.5 inches of the bottom of the can should remain protruding from the chicken.

Note: The type of beer you use depends strictly on your tastes. Some recommend a sweet stout for a sweeter chicken or a citrus option for a citrus flavor. Most traditional recipes call for a domestic option. Of course, you don't have to use beer at all. You can use an empty can or small mason jar and add chicken broth, apple juice, lemon juice, or even wine. The possibilities are endless.

Prepare Your Grill

Once your chicken is fully prepared, then you can start to preheat your Traeger Grill. If you haven't done so already, make sure your grill is clean and ready to use. Preheat the temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and keep the lid closed for ten to fifteen minutes.

Season the chicken and add the beer

Cook Your Chicken

Place the chicken on a baking sheet with the can still upright, and the chicken as well, and then put the sheet directly onto the grill gate. It should cook for 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature should reach 165 degrees Fahrenheit in the thickest part of your chicken. Pro Tip: The skin should crisp up nicely and the juices should be running clear before it's ready to remove.

Prepare Your Chicken to Eat

Carefully remove your chicken from the grill. Allow it to cool for five to ten minutes before attempting to do anything with it since it's so hot. It's best to place it on a cutting board to cool. You can move it onto the cutting board with a pair on tongs. Be sure to keep a spatula underneath it to avoid the can from slipping out.

Remove the Beer Can

Once the time has passed, you can carefully remove the beer can from the chicken. (Don't wait too long because you want your chicken to stay warm enough to eat.) Caution: the can will still be extremely hot. Also, you want to be careful not to spill hot beer all over your dinner or yourself. Pro Tip: Place the cutting board next to your sink. Then, grasp your chicken with your tongs again. Next, you can partially (and very carefully) slide your chicken off the edge of the cutting board and over the sink's edge. Grasp your chicken with a fork and use the tongs to easily remove the beer can, allowing it to drop into the sink. Don't forget to also remove the butcher's twine from the chicken before cutting it.

Serve with Delicious Sides

Traeger recipes also include lots of tempting sides to prepare on the grill, or you could prepare some cold options inside ahead of time. Recommended sides include, but are not limited to:

  • Garlicky Parmesan Sweet Potatoes
  • Grilled Asparagus
  • Baked Potatoes
  • Roasted Cauliflower and Broccoli Salad
  • Caesar Salad or Lettuce Salad
  • Buttery Garlic Rice
  • Loaded Baked Potato Salad
  • Traeger Potatoes au Gratin
Add sides to your chicken

Just with the chicken, sides depend on you and your preferences. Be sure to check out the Traeger vegetable recipes to see a plethora of delicious options.

Be sure to carefully time your preparations so that everything can be enjoyed hot off the grill. If necessary, prepare your sides ahead of time and have them ready to heat on the grill before dinnertime. Check out this article for even more inspiration on how to make a beer can chcken!

Ready to impress everyone with your grilling skills but you aren't quite sure yet how to grill anything? Hopefully you found this easy recipe useful and you get a chance to try it out soon. What do you think? Look like something you can master? Let us know in the comments! And don't forget to check back in once you've tried it out!

Download This Recipe

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Beer Can Chicken on a Traeger Grill (146 downloads)

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of beer is best for beer can chicken?

What temperature should the grill be for beer can chicken?

Where do you check the temperature on a beer can chicken?

How do you remove the beer can after cooking beer can chicken?

What does the beer do in beer can chicken?

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