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from The Farmer and the Grill: A Guide to Grilling, Barbecuing and Spit-Roasting Grassfed Meat by Shannon Hayes

We’ve enjoyed EVERY recipe we’ve tried from Shannon Hayes’ cookbooks (We have several available for sale in our Farm Store).  Here’s another recipe that you just can’t go wrong using… especially for a celebratory Holiday weekend (like the 4th of July!).


¼ cup olive oil
½ cup fresh parsley
2 Tablespoons coarse sea salt
1 Tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
1 clove garlic
1 can of beer
1 chicken, about 4 pounds


Combine the first 5 ingredients in a food processor and puree to make a paste. Massage it into the chicken, taking extra care to work the mixture under the skin (because the bird will be vertical, some of the seasoning on the outside of the skin will fall off).

Start the grill and warm it until it is about 350 degrees in the cooking chamber. If you are using a gas grill, once it has come up to temperature, turn off all but one of the burners. If you are using charcoal, be sure all the coals have been raked to one side or arranged around the periphery. Using the hand test, the grate will be hot enough when you can hold your palm 5 inches above it for no more than 5 seconds.

Pour out (or drink) half of the beer. Place the half-full can on a cast-iron skillet (or use a disposable aluminum pan), then prop the chicken up on it by inserting the can into the body cavity. The two legs, untrussed or untucked, and the can should form a tripod.

Place the skillet with the beer-can chicken on the cool side of the grill, set the cover in place and allow it to cook for roughly 1 ½- 2 hours, making sure the temperature of the cooking chamber stays between 300-400 degrees F (350 degrees F is ideal). If  you are using a charcoal grill, position the opened lid vents so they are on the same side as the chicken. If the lid won’t close (meaning your chicken is too tall), arrange the lid so that the side containing the coals is sealed, and the side beside the meat is ajar. In the event you have to do this, close the lid vents completely to retain more heat, if necessary. The chicken is ready when the internal meat temperature is 165 degrees F.

ALTERNATIVELY, skip the beer can and skewer the whole bird on the spit. Arrange the flames so they run on either side of where the chicken will turn on your rotisserie. Place a drip pan underneath, cover the grill, and allow the meat to cook 1 ½ – 2 hours, keeping the cooking chamber around 350 degrees.

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