Beer Can Turkey

 Beer Can Turkey 

Beer Can Chicken is a BBQ classic, so I thought why not employ this technique when cooking a turkey? No matter your feelings on if cooking poultry on a can provides any moisture benefit or not, people love to cook poultry on a beer can. Plus it is fun!

Be sure to check out all of our turkey cooking recipe and methods here.

Meat Church How To YouTube Video:


  • 1, 12 lb turkey
  • Meat Church Holy Gospel 
  • 1 T, coarse cracked black pepper
  • 1, 24 ounce canned beer



Beer Can Turkey

Thoroughly mix entire contents of the package with 4 cups of water in a medium pot. Stir and nearly bring to a boil to dissolve the salt.

Remove from the heat and allow the liquid to completely cool. You can add ice to speed it up.

Place the turkey in a food safe container. Fill the container with the brine mixture and remaining water making sure to completely submerge the turkey. Refrigerate & brine overnight,

Remove turkey from brine, rinse thoroughly and pat dry.

Prepare your smoker
Prepare smoker at a temperature of 275 degrees F. In this video we used pecan pellets in a Traeger Timberline, but hickory, alder, maple or a fruit wood would also be good choices.

Prepare the turkey
Lightly season all over with black pepper.

Season the turkey all over with our Holy Gospel.

Beer Can Turkey

Allow to adhere for at least 15 minutes.

Cook the turkey
Drink 1/3 of the beer. Allow the remaining beer to come to room temperature.

Place the beer on top of the opened beer tucking the wing tips in to keep them from burning. Optionally you can set the beer + turkey on a pan. You can also utilize a beer can turkey throne for stability if you prefer.

Beer Can Turkey

Touch up any spots on the turkey that you need to after handling the bird and loading it up on the beer can.

Place the turkey upright in the smoker. Optionally, baste with butter starting at 90 minutes into the cook.

Beer Can Turkey

This cook took 3.5 hours for a 12.5 lb breast in this video.

Beer Can Turkey

Using an instant read thermometer, pull the turkey out of the smoker when it reaches 160 in the thickest part of the breast. It will continue to carry over cook a few degrees. 

Beer Can Turkey

Rest at least 15 minutes. Carve and enjoy! 

Beer Can Turkey

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