Griz Family Table

A local reader shares his winning recipe for our Griz Family Table.


Categories: Alumni , Campus


This summer, we put a call out to our Griz Family for your best tailgate reciepes. In return for a winning dish, we sent the winner a bag of Griz supplies for tailgating. The Griz Family Table winner is Scott “Smitty” Rohan-Smith for his “Beer Can Chicken: The Grizzly Way”. Smitty graduated from Great Falls High School in 1972 and from UM in 1977. 

Beer Can Chicken: THE GRIZZLY WAY 

• Two 2-pound to 4-pound
whole chickens.
• Two beer cans of choice.
• Spice Rub and Glaze ingredients.

Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl:
• 3 tbsp light brown sugar
• 3 tbsp paprika
• 1½ tbsp table salt
• 1½ tbsp ground black pepper
• 1½ tsp cayenne pepper
Reserve 2 tbsp of the rub to put into glaze

ScottySmith GLAZE
Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl:
• 4 tbsp light brown sugar
• 4 tbsp ketchup
• 4 tbsp white vinegar
• 4 tbsp beer
• 2 tsp hot sauce (Frank’s preferred)
• 2 tsp spice mixture 

Massage the spice mixture on the skin, under the skin and inside the cavity of the chicken. 
With a skewer, poke holes all over in the skin. Set the chicken aside and prepare the glaze. Remove half of the beer from each can. Remove the top of the can completely with a church key. Crumble 2 bay leaves into each can.


Prepare the grill for medium-high, indirect heat (approximately 350 to 375 degrees). Using a cookie sheet or roasting pan, insert the beer can into the chickens’ rear end. Stand the chicken up on the cookie sheet or roasting pan using the legs to stabilize them.

Place the chickens on the indirect side of the grill and close the lid. Grill the chickens until the skin is well-browned and crisp, approximately 40 to 60 minutes. While the chicken is cooking, prepare a vegetable medley. (I like to make it colorful so I use a red, yellow and green bell pepper, a Walla Walla onion and a zucchini). Cut the
veggies into approximately 1-inch squares. When the skin is brown and crisp, add the vegetables to the pan, baste the chicken with the glaze, drizzle some of the glaze onto the veggies and cover grill.
After about 10 minutes baste the chicken again and drizzle more glaze on the veggies.
Cover the grill for 10 more minutes. Grill until thigh meat heats to 170 degrees.

Once you reach temperature, place chicken on the carving table with the beer can still
inserted and let rest for 10 minutes. You can continue to cook the veggies during this
resting period if they need it (and add more glaze if needed). After 10 minutes, remove
the beer cans, carve the chickens and plate for serving.

Coming up: Send us your favorite winter recipe
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