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Slow Cooker Beer Can Chicken Recipe

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Skip the grill and make slow cooker beer can chicken! Cook a whole chicken in the slow cooker with beer and finish it off on the grill for a delicious, moist chicken.

Season the chicken with a rub and cook over the beer! The easy way to make beer can chicken.

We have been cooking whole chickens on the grill for years. In fact, we grilled our first whole chicken about a month after we got married. It’s been a favorite recipe since.

Making beer can chicken on the grill makes a delicious and moist chicken. But it’s a little bit fussy and the chicken needs some baby-sitting. Plus it uses up a lot of propane.

So when I ran across a recipe for making beer can chicken in the slow cooker on Hamilton Beach’s website, I knew I had to try it. I didn’t really think you could replicate beer can chicken in a slow cooker.

I was wrong. This is a great option to make beer can chicken without a grill! We did crisp up the chicken skin on the grill after is was cooked in the slow cooker. It worked perfectly.

Slow Cooker Beer Can Chicken Recipe

Recipe for Beer Can Chicken

The trick cooking a whole chicken in a slow cooker is to keep raised up off the bottom of the crock. I usually use potatoes when making slow cooker roasted chicken.

But I wasn’t sure about potatoes sitting in beer so used tin foil. Tear off 4 pieces of aluminum foil and make in to balls. Place the foil balls in the bottom of the crock of a 6 quart slow cooker.

Best Beer Can Chicken Recipe
Pour the beer in to the crock of slow cooker.  I used a cheap, light beer because I don’t like using the good stuff for cooking. But any beer will do! Just don’t spend a lot of money if you’re going out to buy beer just for this recipe.

Prepare the chicken by removing the gizzards and innards and trimming any fat around openings.  The whole chickens I buy are usually between 3-5 pounds. Use a larger slow cooker for a bigger bird.

Next, use your favorite herbs and spices to season chicken as desired. Salt and pepper works great, but add any spices you like. I use lemon pepper, garlic, seasoned salt and a chicken rub. Make sure to get under the skin and in the cavity of the chicken with the spices.

Beer Can Chicken Rub
Place the chicken on top of the foil so that it sits above the beer. Cover and cook on high for 3 hours or low for 5-6 hours.

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The chicken can be served right out of the slow cooker, but the skin will not be crisp. We finished the chicken off on the grill  for a few minutes to crisp up the skin and add that grilled flavor. You can also use a broiler to crisp up the skin if a grill isn’t available.

Beer Can Chicken Cooker

 

 

Slow Cooker Beer Can Chicken Recipe

Slow Cooker Beer Can Chicken Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 whole chicken, 3-5 pounds
  • 1 12 ounce bottle beer
  • Spices for chicken rub
  • Aluminum foil

Instructions

  1. Tear off 4 pieces of aluminum foil and make in to balls. Place the foil balls in the bottom of the crock of a 6 quart slow cooker.
  2. Pour the beer in to the crock of slow cooker.
  3. Prepare chicken by removing the gizzards and innards and trimming any fat around openings. Season chicken as desired. Salt and pepper works great, but add any spices you like. I use lemon pepper, garlic, seasoned salt and a chicken rub.
  4. Place the chicken on top of the foil so that it sits above the beer.
  5. Cover and cook on high for 3 hours or low for 5-6 hours.
  6. The chicken can be served once it's cook or finish on the grill or under a broiler to crisp up the skin.

Nutrition Information:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 38 Carbohydrates: 3g

 

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16 Comments
  • Erica
    September 29, 2017

    Trying to make this for tonight 🙂

    Wish me luck!

    • Camille
      September 30, 2017

      I hope you loved it as much as we do!

  • Miz Helen
    January 17, 2017

    Your Slow Cooker Beer Can Chicken looks delicious! Hope you are having a great week and thanks so much for sharing your awesome post with us at Full Plate Thursday. We look forward to seeing you again real soon!
    Miz Helen

  • Erlene Amat
    January 14, 2017

    I still haven’t tried cooking a whole chicken in the slow cooker and will have to try this. Thanks for sharing on Merry Monday. Pinned.

  • Melissa Ruddy
    January 11, 2017

    Think I will be making this over the weekend. Can you use non-alcoholic beer for this?

    • Camille
      January 12, 2017

      I don’t see why not! But the alcohol will cook off.

      • Casey
        February 20, 2019

        Can u use apple ale or can of water instead

  • Audrey
    January 10, 2017

    I will have to pop my next slow cooker chicken on the grill or at least under the broiler to get that beautiful skin. Thanks for partying with us on #TastyTuesdays

  • Helen at the Lazy Gastronome
    January 10, 2017

    Now that’s pretty smart – Thanks for sharing on the What’s for Dinner link up.

  • You had me at slow cooker! Always looking for great slow cooker recipes – thank you. Great tin foil tip!!

  • Crystal Green
    July 25, 2016

    This sounds like a WONDERFUL dinner idea. I need to invest in another slow cooker something fierce now.

    Thank you so much for sharing this with us on the #HomeMattersParty. I hope to see you again next Friday at 12 AM EST.

  • Pia
    July 23, 2016

    I found you via Share the Wealth Sunday, and made this this week. I could not BELIEVE how good this came out! I’d never made a whole chicken in the crockpot before because of the whole crispiness issue, but this was everything I wanted in a chicken! Great flavor, crispy skin, fall off the bone tender. And it took like 5 minutes to put together.

    Mmm mmm mmm! I already want to make it again!

  • Helen
    July 23, 2016

    It looks so moist and I really want to pull a piece off! Thanks for sharing at the What’s for Dinner link up!

  • Mother of 3
    July 20, 2016

    What a simple idea to use the grill or broiler for crisping up the chicken skin… can’t believe I never thought of that. Handy tip just in time; I cooked a crock pot chicken today! Pinned to try!

  • Charlene Asay
    July 19, 2016

    Sounds delish! Thanks for sharing with us at Family Joy Blog Link Up Party .