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My first boston butt

post #1 of 41
Thread Starter 

Hello SMF members. I am a new member out of Columbia SC with a new Masterbilt electric smokehouse smoker. I am wanting to smoke my first brisket in mid December for a holiday party of about 20 people and want to make pulled pork sliders. I would love some direction on prepping, cooking (including temp to cook at, approximate time per pound to cook, and end time to take it out and let it rest so I can shred it up for people to make slider sandwiches). I consider myself semi talented on a gas grill and normally slow cook tri tips over indirect heat with my homemade rub that I put on but just want to do a nice juicy flavorful meat for this holiday party. I appreciate any responses aimed at helping me to be a success with this smoking endeavor.



Edited by epnsc - 11/28/12 at 9:53am
post #2 of 41

Hi Carl, I'm confused. You said you want to smoke a brisket for pulled pork sliders? Brisket is beef not pork. If you want pulled pork you should smoke a boston butt or pork shoulder.


I see this is your first post here, when you get a minute would you do us a favor and go to Roll Call and introduce yourself so we can get to know you and give you a proper welcome, also would you add your location to your profile, we like knowing where you are when we talk to you, Thanks!

post #3 of 41
Thread Starter 
Very good point and sorry about the confusion. I would like to definately like to do some pulled pork sliders so I am thinking the Boston butt would be my best choice?
post #4 of 41

I see you already have your rub and have been doing tri-tips so this should be easy for you. Rinse the butt real good then apply your rub, you can use a binder such as olive oil or mustard if you want, I don't use binders and find the rub sticks just fine. Just a matter of preference. Then wrap it in plastic wrap and put in fridge overnight. Smoke it at 225*-240* and plan on about 1.5 - 2 hours per pound. It will be done when the IT (internal temp) reaches about 200*-205*. You can probe it when it starts getting close and when it is soft as warm butter it is done or when you can wiggle the bone around like it's not attached anymore. Boston butts are real easy just make sure you let it cook long enough.

You can use the search bar at the top of the page and you will find tons of info on pulled pork. Lot's of people here and lot's of different methods.

You might want to edit the title of this thread to read boston butt or pulled pork or something similar.

post #5 of 41
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the advice. I was thinking in addition to the rub of having a mixture of water, apple juice, apple cidar vinegar, and a beer in the water pan? Would you recommend hickory wood chips and how large of a butt would you think?
post #6 of 41
Thread Starter 
One last thought I had was after letting the butt rest was pulling it apart in a large crockpot and mixing in a tad more vinegar and then setting the pot to warm to last the evening. Give me your thoughts if you don't mind.
post #7 of 41

Putting the pulled pork in the croc is fine. Here's the sauce I put on my pulled pork once its pulled:


1-1/2 cups cider vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup catsup
1 teaspoon salt
1 chopped onion
2 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/8 teaspoons red pepper

Couple shots of Jack Daniels

Preparation: Mix all ingredients in a saucepan and simmer slowly for 15 minutes


and the finishing sauce for dipping etc...:


1 cup ketchup
1 cup water
1/4 cup apple-cider vinegar
1 small onion
2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons molasses
2 teaspoons dry mustard
1 teaspoon chili powder

Preparation: Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and simmer for 20 minutes. Adjust seasonings as needed to achieve the right kick.

post #8 of 41

Holding in a crockpot is a good idea for keeping it warm. Here is a really good finishing sauce to put on it instead of straight vinegar:



JJ's Finishing Sauce


2C Apple Cider Vinegar

2T Worcestershire Sauce or more to taste

1/4C Brown Sugar

1T Smoked Paprika

2 tsp Granulated Garlic

2 tsp Granulated Onion

2 tsp Fine Grind Black Pepper

1 tsp Celery Salt

1 tsp Cayenne Pepper or Chipotle powder. Add more if you like Heat.

1/2 tsp Grnd Allspice


Combine all and whisk well. Let rest, at room temp, 30 minutes for the flavors to meld together.


Again this is Spicy and Sour with just enough sugar to balance. I put the Finishing Sauce on the PP and serve a Sweet KC Style Sauce on the side for those that like sweeter. I also include a bottle of Hotter Texas Pete for additional Heat.

post #9 of 41
Thread Starter 

All of this sounds so delicious and I am going to add a few of my own signature flavors as well. One last thing, planning on between 20-25 people, making sliders and also serving deviled eggs, cheese dip, and I am sure people will bring appetizers of there own as they usually do at our house. What size butt would you recommend? Thanks again for all of the excellent tips and recipes and so glad I found this site.


post #10 of 41

I have found that two 8+ pound butts will serve that many with other goodies, and then there is usually enough for second rounds. I butts I buy come two to a vac pack, and the average weight is usually 16# per pack bone in. If you don't see them packed this way at your store ask the butcher for un-trimmed shoulder.

post #11 of 41

You can figure about 1/3lb meat per person if there are other sides. You should get about a 50-60 % yield, so 25 people X 1/3lb = @8lbs of finished meat. With a 60% yield you would need about 14lbs fresh butt to start with, so a couple of 7lb'ers should be enough.

I think these calculations are right but hopefully someone else will chime in and verify.

You still have a couple of weeks to read and get ready for this so you should have no problem pulling off one great party.

If you have time you could do a practice smoke before so you are completely ready and will have some good PP in the freezer.

post #12 of 41
Thread Starter 

Might just try one this Saturday while watching the ACC and SEC championship games. Go Gamecocks by the way even though we arent playing in any championships this year, ha.

post #13 of 41

Sounds great make sure you post some pics also look under side dishes forum, there are some whoppers in there to try also.

post #14 of 41
Thread Starter 
Certainly will and thanks.
post #15 of 41
Thread Starter 
Would there be a major difference between a bone in and bone out Boston butt?
post #16 of 41

At least here, bone in is cheaper, less processing, which is why I ask the butcher for the un-trimmed. After the smoke it all pulls the same!

post #17 of 41
Thread Starter 
What type wood chips would you recommend, hickory, mesquite, apple?
post #18 of 41
Originally Posted by epnsc View Post

What type wood chips would you recommend, hickory, mesquite, apple?

That would depend on personal preference, but hickory & apple mix would be a nice flavor. Just my 2 pennies.

post #19 of 41
Thread Starter 

One last question hopefully, anymore and I might as well have you guys come cook it for me, haha. I havent used this electric smoker for an extended period of time (thinking I will need to smoke my 4.30 pound brisket for about 8 hours) and I am planning on doing it pretty much overnight while I sleep. Is this safe to let the smoker go on its own for that period of time and what about the wood chips I add, would I need to add more? Should I do it this way or get up early and do it all throughout the day while I can tend to it?



post #20 of 41
Originally Posted by Roadkill Cafe View Post

That would depend on personal preference, but hickory & apple mix would be a nice flavor. Just my 2 pennies.

X2. I'm a big fan of blending two kinds of wood to create unique flavors. I've found that hickory chunks with apple chips is a really good blend for pork butt.


In general I usually pick one of what I call "The big 3" (Oak, Hickory, Mesquite) as a chunk and mix with a fruitwood (in chip form) spread around the chunk. Like roadkill, this is just my opinion. You may end up not liking it. Do whatever works for you.

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