Happy new year! I know I am a little late to the new year party, but after a much needed holiday break celebrating with tons of friends and family, I’m back! You missed me, right? Don’t worry, I missed you, too! I hope that your holidays and new year were as merry and bright as mine and that you are feeling rested and ready for 2014!
This chicken is the perfect meal for these cold, cold evenings ahead of us. First of all, it roasts in your oven for over an hour, warming the entire house and making it smell like heaven. Secondly, it is filling, super moist, and delicious, while requiring no butter for the cooking process. If you have a family with little ones around and are concerned about the beer, fret no more! The alcohol within the beer cooks off in the oven and the resulting broth tastes exactly like that – broth!
John and I cook this when we will be in the house and want something hearty to fill our bellies without costing us a fortune in calories or money. The skin on the chicken browns to perfection and the herbs make it taste fantastic. As a family of two, we have plenty of left-overs for making chicken Panini or just eating the same meal again because it is so delicious. We like to cook whole, unpeeled cloves of garlic in the broth and spread the cloves on bread fresh out of the oven! You have to really love your garlic to do this, but if you do, it’s unbelievably tasty! The garlic slides right out of its skin and spreads like butter (without being butter!) on your toasted bread. We are particularly fond of doing this with multigrain baguettes.
For this recipe, you need a special dish, but could make do with a beer can and a large, ceramic, oven safe bowl. Our beer roasted chicken dish was given to us by John’s aunt and her family for our wedding, but this roasting pan is very similar, a beautiful blue, and a little bigger (always a good thing)! Once you fit the chicken down over the beer well, you want to have plenty of space for chopped sweet potatoes, carrots, and, if you’re like us, lots of garlic! This said, make sure your dish is large enough for a well-sized bird and the veggies you’ll cook with it.
Hope this recipe serves to keep you warm throughout the winter – and especially the next couple of days! If it is 21℉ tonight in South Carolina, I can’t even imagine being in the temperatures up north! Keep warm and stay safe!
- 1 12 oz. can/bottle beer - We have found over the years that lighter beers make a tastier broth than darker beers. The darker the beer, the more bitter the broth. My personal favorite is Yuengling. And remember, the alcohol cooks out of the beer making this safe for even your youngest carnivores!
- 2 sweet potatoes, chopped
- 3 carrots, chopped
- 1/2 onion, quartered
- 10 cloves garlic, unpeeled (or more if you love garlic like me!)
- 4(ish) lb. whole chicken - this will give you approximately 2 lb. meat
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- 1 tsp. paprika (smoked paprika is also great!) - The paprika really helps achieve that nice warm brown tone on the cooked chicken!
- 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
- 1/4 tsp. dried marjoram (Feel free to substitute a little more oregano if you don't have marjoram in your spice collection. Keep in mind that oregano has a slightly stronger flavor than marjoram, so adjust your amounts accordingly!)
- Salt and pepper, to taste (Don't salt too lightly - the salt will help this brown and make the skin absolutely delicious.)
- Pour beer into well located in the center of the dish - reserve the leftover beer for the veggies. I like to drop a couple cloves of garlic into the well. If you don't have a beer can chicken dish, you can pour about a third of the beer into the bottom of a 9 by 13 inch baking dish and then set the open can (and the rest of its content) in the middle of the dish.
- Place chicken rear-end first over beer well (or beer can!), legs down. Discard giblets and neck...or make gravy! Surround chicken with chopped sweet potato, carrots, onion, and remaining cloves of garlic. Pour remaining beer over veggies. If needed, add a little water to increase liquid. If you are worried about an overflow in your oven, place a cookie sheet with sides on the oven rack below where the chicken will sit. Any overflow will then be caught for easy clean up. We have never had an issue with overflow, but we are careful not to let the liquid level get too high in our roasting pan!
- Drizzle the olive oil over the skin of the chicken and then rub with spices, salt, and pepper.
- Place chicken in cool oven, then set oven to 350℉. Roast chicken for 90-105 minutes. Chicken is done when the thickest area of meat (try the breast!) is at an internal temperature of 165℉.
- Serving Size: ~4oz. chicken plus 1/8 of veggies ・~300 calories per serving (As the size of chickens vary somewhat, so could your calorie results.)