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make a flame grilled beer can chicken on my Gravity 560


Smoke Blower
Joined Mar 14, 2021
When it hit 140f I cranked it up to 390 so I could crisp up the skin. 10 minutes later alarm alarm alarm on my phone from my probe. There was a big flare up and the grill was at 475 with the chicken engulfed in flames. I don't have any fireproof gloves just pot holders and didn't know what to do so I left the top open thinking that would help, but forgot to turn the grill off. The fire stayed roaring for about 3 more minutes and I thought DOH and put the slides in and turned it off. The flame took a few more minutes to die out. The bottom half was really really charred, I took some off for a taste test and it was definitely crispy. I scraped away some of the extra black bits and what was underneath was cooked perfectly and the skin that wasn't jet black was super tasty. I think I inadvertently found my new favorite way to cook beer can chicken. Maybe half as much time with the 2 foot flames though lol. Only problem is I don't think I can duplicate such a flare up on a consistent basis. My last beer can chicken was cooked the same and there was no flare up.

I know the Gravity's mostly a set it and forget it but with potential flare ups you still have to pay attention lol. Yes my grease pan was clean before I started this.

So I know I could Google this but I'm about to go cut up the chicken, what's the best way to deal with massive flames when you open your Gravity?


Smoke Blower
Joined Mar 14, 2021
Thanks for the reply, I guess because it was a grease fire why I was thinking for some reason I should leave the smoker lid open. Next time I'll cut the smoker off and leave the lid closed. And as for the beer can thing, I made it using a Komado Joe ceramic chicken stand thing. I just call it a BCC because it stands upright like a BCC.


Master of the Pit
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Joined Jan 18, 2020
With a grease fire, sodium bicarbonate is your friend (baking soda) it’s messy when used, but does soak up some grease, which should be cleaned out any way after such an episode. This takes away the fires fuel. An almost instant stop. No need to super char the meat.

As to the beer can chicken:
The safety issues sighted as “un safe” are weak at best. More trying to justify ones own opinion.
next, I think the best thing about beer can chicken, or turkey, is that the core stays a bit cooler there by helping the weekend warrior bbq’er not over cook the core of the bird. This produces a bird with some juice still in the meat. It is a crutch, if you will. I have a “turkey horn” that is all stainless steel that is filled With liquid of your choice, then inserted into the cavity of the bird. This is a stand, if you will for the bird which sets almost vertically and elevated off the grate. The liquid in the horn is a heat sink. Slowing the heat inside the bird, allowing the exterior to crisp and brown while not over cooking the bird. Works great.
Also, why Have we all enjoyed stuffed foul for all these years? By the article’s theory, a stuffed bird would never get done inside before it was over cooked and dried out. This just isn’t so. Nothing wrong with differing methods. Just learn to apply them.

chef jimmyj

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Joined May 12, 2011
The Baking Soda works great. And if you use whatever, to slide the bird out of the way, before applying, you can keep cooking, if needed...JJ

kilo charlie

Master of the Pit
Joined Sep 25, 2017
My apologies I advance for hijacking this thread... I did not mention baking soda etc due to the mess it can potentially make inside your smoker. It is the perfect solution to a grease fire as it creates a layer that separates the oxygen from the fire thus putting it out. Exactly like how a chemical fire extinguisher works.
It's best not to use water as grease floats and the fire will spread on top of the water creating a more spread out fire.
If you can close all the openings and starve the oxygen out, that's the cleanest less mess way. If not, baking soda is the solution.

As for the cooking style, I understand the argument for trying to cook a bird that way.

I find that spatchcocking a bird is a far superior way to cook turkeys and chickens. Spatchcocking involves cutting out the back bone of a chicken or turkey and cracking the breastbone so that the bird lays flat.

If your smoker is large enough to lay the bird flat, it results in the meat being cooked more evenly. Now you're cooking at all one level instead of trying to cook a ball. This allows the thigh meat and the breast meat to come to their respective temps in a tighter time frame than you'd ever get trying to cook a large round object.
I've found the results to produce the crispiest skin, the juiciest meat and never drying out the breasts.
Last edited:

bill ace 350

Master of the Pit
Joined Dec 28, 2013
Beer Can Chicken.

Tried it twice, no noticeable advantage in my attempts.


Now that is funny!


Master of the Pit
SMF Premier Member
Joined Jan 13, 2015
You can make a VERY SIMPLE tray out of alum foil. Double or triple fold a square piece big enough for the chicken on the holder to sit in. Fold up each side about 1/2 inch to contain the fat drippings. When the chicken is done, turn off the heat and let it cool to solidify the fat. Fold and discard.
Flare ups eliminated. Been doing this for years.

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