We can’t think of any better way to celebrate a lazy summer Sunday! Cooking a whole chicken on the grill takes time, patience and a willingness to closely monitor both the temperature of the grill and the chicken meat.
Beer Can Chicken on Gas Grill
- Turn grill on medium heat. Close the lid and preheat until the grill registers 350 to 375 F.
- Pat chicken dry, open a can of pale lager or pilsner, pour half out and insert, tab side up, in the cavity of the chicken. Place chicken in a heat-proof pan to catch drippings. Open the grill lid and place chicken on the grill over indirect heat. Close lid.
- As the chicken cooks, the beer will boil, evaporate and form a steam that helps to cook the interior of the bird.
- Check several different areas of white and dark meat for doneness. For bone-in chicken, grill until a meat thermometer registers at least 180 to 185 F, which allows the marrow to cook through and meat juices to run clear.
See full recipe for Beer Can Chicken.
Spatchcock Chicken on the Grill
- Using a pair of heavy duty kitchen shears, remove the backbone of the whole bird, open up the cavity and flatten the chicken. Season following directions above.
- Turn the grill on medium heat. Close the lid and preheat until the grill registers 350 to 375 F.
- Remove chicken from solution, pat dry and place, bone side down, on the indirect heat area of grill. Monitor temperature of chicken with a meat thermometer, and when chicken is 80 percent cooked through, turn the direct-heat section of the grill to high. When grill thermometer registers 500 to 545 F, move chicken from the indirect to the direct heat area of the grill, placed skin side down. Let cook 1 to 1 1/2 minutes to create grill marks. Check doneness with a meat thermometer. To cook longer, move chicken back to the indirect heat area of the grill. If skin is overbrowning, flip chicken to the bone side and continue cooking.
See full recipe for Spatchcock Chicken.
A classic main course at any backyard barbecue! The secret to moist and juicy chicken breasts is searing first, cooking second. To season chicken: For thin breasts or meat marinated in a high-acid solution, let set for 30 minutes to an hour. If breasts are 1 to 1 1/2 inches or thicker, let set for 2 to 4 hours.
- Preheat grill to 500 to 545 F. Grates should be searing hot.
- To create checkerboard grill marks: Place chicken breasts, top or “show side” down, on the grill at a slight angle to the grates. After 1 to 2 minutes, lift up one end of breast to check grill marks. When ready, lift chicken breasts off grill and place back on grates, top side down, in the opposite direction of grill marks.
- To cook chicken through: Turn the grill temperature down and move breasts, show side up, to the indirect heat zone. Close the lid. Monitor the grill thermometer to ensure that the grill stays at a constant 350 to 375 F. Half way through the cooking process, lift breasts off the grill and place back down in the opposite direction of grill marks on the underside. Open the grill lid and with a meat thermometer check the temperature of chicken every 8 to 10 minutes until done (temperature of meat should register 170 F).
Note: Chicken breasts can be grilled with the lid open; doing so may extend cooking time and lessen the appearance of grill marks.