BBQ beer can chicken | beer can chicken -

BBQ Beer Can Chicken

This BBQ Beer Can Chicken (also known as beer butt chicken) with Molasses Beer BBQ sauce is moist and juicy, making it the perfect Father's Day dinner. It's also Weight Watchers friendly!
Course main
Cuisine North American
Keyword barbecue, bbq, beer, chicken
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings 6 people
Calories 470kcal
Author adapted from Weight Watchers Magazine, 2003



  • 1 can beer I use light beer
  • 1 roaster chicken
  • Molasses & Beer BQQ sauce (see recipe below)

Molasses & Beer BBQ sauce:

  • 1 1/4 cup chili sauce
  • 3/4 cup molasses
  • 3/4 cup light beer
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp Louisiana hot sauce
  • 1 1/4 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tbsp liquid smoke


  • Heat grill to medium.
  • Open can of beer with can opener, pour half the beer into a container and reserve. Then place can into cavity of chicken as shown. 
    BBQ Beer Can chicken | BBQ, beer can -
  • Place chicken in a deep aluminum roaster pan and place onto grill. Close BBQ lid and cook for 45 minutes
  • Combine all BBQ sauce  ingredients in sauce pan, the baste generously on chicken. 
  • Allow chicken to cook for remaining 45 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, simmer the remaining BBQ sauce for 20 minutes, until reduced by half the volume.
  • Remove chicken from BBQ and slice. Serve chicken with remaining BBQ sauce, as desired.


Note: You'll need to keep the grill going for up to 1.5 hrs so make sure you have extra propane or are filled up
Note: Your grill will need to be high enough that it can close over an upright chicken and test it before you light it
Nutrition Facts
BBQ Beer Can Chicken
Amount Per Serving
Calories 470 Calories from Fat 144
% Daily Value*
Fat 16g25%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Cholesterol 80mg27%
Sodium 723mg31%
Potassium 857mg24%
Carbohydrates 57g19%
Sugar 55g61%
Protein 20g40%
Vitamin A 545IU11%
Vitamin C 4.5mg5%
Calcium 105mg11%
Iron 3.3mg18%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
*** It is very difficult to get a nutritional analysis with this recipe.This nutritional analysis was assumes that you use ALL the BBQ sauce and that it stays on the chicken. (My family only used about 1/3 of it for 4 of us and much bakes off in a 1.5 hr cooking period) The calorie count and fat content per portion is reduced by using less BBQ sauce as well. I would prefer not to use a nutritional analysis on this recipe, but google requires it if you want to show up in searches.
***** In terms of smart points, I calculate it like a regular BBQ sauce (most seem to be 3 smart points for 2 tbsp) depending on how much you use, as chicken is 0 points on the freestyle program, so I count 5 WW fsp 's per serving


Calories: 470kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 80mg | Sodium: 723mg | Potassium: 857mg | Sugar: 55g | Vitamin A: 545IU | Vitamin C: 4.5mg | Calcium: 105mg | Iron: 3.3mg