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General question on using mustard as a sticking agent for rubs . . .

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Afternoon (or morning) all,

I smoked my first but about two weeks back . . . covered in mustard and then my rub, pulled at 200*, added the finishing sauce and it was excellent. I couldn't have been happier.

That said, I have two questions about using the mustard that way. It's been said that the mustard flavor "cooks out," which I don't dispute. Here are my questions:

1. Doesn't the mustard impart a flavor to the meat (marinading it) prior to the smoke?

2. With a coating of mustard in the way, it would seem to me that my rub would have a hard time getting to the meat. Am I wrong?

As a side note, I stopped at Costco last night to check prices on brisket. Turns out they don't carry brisket at this Costco. Ever. Not even in the summer. PDT_Armataz_01_23.gif

That just plain bums me out. They did have beautiful crypacks of chuck roast for $2.49/lb, so I'm contemplating a purchase there. What's a good price for chuck roast?

Thanks all and happy Thursday!

post #2 of 19
1. Doesn't the mustard impart a flavor to the meat (marinading it) prior to the smoke?
I think personally that if you use the mustard and rub, then put your meat on to smoke immediately, it doesn't really provide any flavor. I've tried both. I couldn't tell the difference in one from the other when finished. I do think that marinading overnight in mustard will impact the flavor. I do this with chicken alot and I love it. Overnight gives the mustard time to soak into the meat. I'll try it next time I do a butt and see if it makes a difference. Bet it does.

2. With a coating of mustard in the way, it would seem to me that my rub would have a hard time getting to the meat. Am I wrong?
I don't think it has any bearing as to the spices and or rubs you use. The heat and smoke carry the flavors and meld with the mustard. It all breaks down as you cook.
post #3 of 19
The best way to find out if the mustard adds flavor or keeps flavor from the meat is to not put it on the next time. It is all a matter of personal preference and taste. Sometimes I use it and sometimes I forget. I don't really notice a difference. Also, some people say it helps to form the bark.

You will find prices vary from one area of the country to the other. A price of $2.49 lb is a good sale price for this area. Usually we're lucky if it's $2.99 lb. but it might be more expensive than somewhere else.
post #4 of 19
I usually use mustard on my butts but once I ran out during prep and did one butt with mustard and one without. The only difference I noticed was the mustarded one had a nicer bark on it.

As far as your brisket, try a local butcher and ask for a whole packer. The one I go to gives me a better price if I buy it untrimmed.
post #5 of 19
Letting the meat sit overnight will help the vinegar in the mustard pentrate a little better, giving some tenderizing effect. The mustard also helps keep the rub on, and it does meltdown into the bark. I usually apply the mustard, then the rub, cover and leave it overnight in th fridge to setup. It's all good my friend.
post #6 of 19


I would like to think that the mustard does add some flavor. I love MUSTARD!

post #7 of 19
I use a mustard slather.I mainly use for rub to stick to creating nice bark under long low smoking.I use plain mustard, with extra ingredients added- creating the slather.
post #8 of 19
The Costco here carries brisket. It's just the flat though. I've actually gotten my best packer briskets at Walmart. Go figure. They are about the only place around here that carries the packers.
post #9 of 19
he hit it right on the head there the thing that the mustard really helps with is bark and TENDERIZING the meat the mustard has a lot of vinegar in it
post #10 of 19
Vinegar will do very little in tenderizeing,BUT it does open the pours of the meat letting the rub penetrate more, which musterd will/can plug the pours. You can get just as good or better barq with out musterd, its all what you like. I dont slather and get deep rub penitration and builds a barq that hangs on.
post #11 of 19
My wife hates mustard and generally won't finish anything I cook that has even a little bit of mustard in it. (for example, 1 teaspoon of mustard in a whole pot of beef stroganoff)

That said, I always wait for a moment when she's not home and rub mustard all over anything I smoke and thus far she hasn't caught on, even if I let it sit covered in the fridge overnight before smoking.
post #12 of 19
I most always use mustard. Seems to give a darker bark. I am going to do a wild pig hind leg this weekend. I will try it without to see if I can tell any difference.
post #13 of 19
I always used mustard for only holding the rub on. I only put is on lightly just enough for the rub to adhere to. On another forum this was topic a couple of years ago. General all around concenses was it added no flavor and was for giving the rub something to adhere to. I have done both ways and have seen or tasted no difference.
post #14 of 19
Mustard? I dont use it any more. Better bark maybe but the bark doesnt cling to the meat in my opinion. Also dont think the rub flavors the meat as much as it flavors the bark.

I rub down the meat with worchestershire before adding rub (which I dont rub but just shake it on and let it set. I think too much rubbin closes the pores of the meat and lessens the penetration of flavors). Some times to add another level of flavor Ill use Chipotle flavored Tobasco sauce before the rub. Now were talkin! I dont have any problems with lack-o-bark or bark not clingin to the meat.

2 cents...
post #15 of 19
PDT_Armataz_01_37.gif But they call it rub for a reason. POINTS!!
post #16 of 19
isnt that a lil politically incorrect dont you mean mustardly challenged
post #17 of 19
Thread Starter 
I actually didn't think there was much of a "bark" on the butt I did with the mustard. Again, I couldn't have been happier with how it turned out in general. The flavor was excellent and the meat was moist and tender, but there wasn't much of a crust on it.

Darrin - I had wondered about the briskets at Wally World. I noticed they have packers there, but this morning they were $3.88/lb!!!! Insane.

For a town of 100,000 people, we're actually pretty short on butchers here. There are two more that I know of that I still need to check out. I'd love to find a local, regular, trusted meat source for shoulder, brisket, ribs, chuck, etc.

Thanks for all the discussion on mustard-coating!
post #18 of 19
My local Sams is now just carring the flats. But I found a restaurant supply company that I can still buy the whole packers from. Try looking for a supply company like that. Most of them will sell to the public on a cash basis.
post #19 of 19
i like to use a mustard and honey combo. in my mind it makes a difference.
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