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At-Attention Grilled Chicken

After years of making this recipe, I have yet to find a better grilled chicken. The cooking technique makes it so juicy and tender, you won’t want to fix a whole chicken any other way.—Shirley Hodge, Bangor, Pennsylvania
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. + marinating Grill: 1-1/4 hours + standing
  • Makes
    6 servings


  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh thyme or 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 broiler/fryer chicken (3 to 4 pounds)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 can (12 ounces) beer or nonalcoholic beer


  • In a small bowl, mix the first eight ingredients. Place chicken on a large plate; tuck under wings. With fingers, carefully loosen skin from chicken breast; rub oil and 2 tablespoons thyme mixture under skin. Rub remaining mixture over skin. Refrigerate, covered, at least 1 hour or overnight.
  • Prepare grill for indirect heat, using a drip pan. Remove a third of the beer from can. Using a can opener, make additional large holes in top of can. Cover bottom and sides of can with heavy-duty foil, wrapping tightly. Carefully slide chicken over foil, neck end up.
  • Stand chicken over drip pan, spreading legs slightly to secure. Grill chicken, covered, over indirect medium heat 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hours or until a thermometer inserted in thickest part of thigh reads 170°-175°.
  • Carefully remove chicken from grill; tent with foil. Let stand 15 minutes before carving.

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Average Rating:
  • hotfudgesundae
    Jan 28, 2016

    Yummy tasting with excellent tender, moist meat. This is my new favorite way to cook a whole chicken!

  • klamgs
    Mar 12, 2014

    Moist and tasty

  • parksville
    Aug 30, 2013

    Easy, delicious, very moist. Put a chunk of onion in the neck to seal in the steam. Barbecued a 4 lb. 4 oz. roasting chicken in 1 hr 10 min. This is now my go-to bbq chicken recipe! Fantastic!

  • CharlotteBaillargeon
    Aug 26, 2013

    No stars showing...I hope I clicked on 5 because this was wonderfully moist and tastey. We had so much fun sitting and nibbling while smelling the chicken cook. I would only like to add that you make sure to clean the can before using it for cooking the chicken on. Thank you.

  • travelingwhisk
    Aug 20, 2013

    cooked it in the oven for 1.5 hours at 350, sub'd Italian seasoning for thyme and garlic salt pepper combo for salt and pepper. was moist

  • kiddiecorral
    Jun 26, 2013

    fantastic you may need to cook more than one at a time

  • brmollen
    Mar 27, 2013

    The chicken is so tender and the flavor is great.

  • fishrgal
    Nov 12, 2012

    I was skeptical about this recipe due to the odd assortment of herbs and spices. But I have never had a TOH recipe fail me yet so I tried it. Didn't have time to marinate, just went ahead and followed the rest of the recipe exactly and just have to say, it was the best way of grilling chicken I have ever tried! We all loved it, and will definately make this way again.

  • EAW9414
    Jul 1, 2012

    i made this today i put it in my deep fryerand it turns out better then grilling it.

  • mdilly
    May 24, 2012

    I put a half of a lemon or onion on the neck opening.It seals in the steam.Yum!