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what happened?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
I smoked my 1st bone in butt last night.... it looked great but the meat was definitely not "fall of the bone"... I smoked that joker until it hit 170 then wrapped it and kept going for a while, problem is that I had it in the smoker for like 4.5 hours for a 3lb piece of meat...should have been plenty but it took like 6hours for that thing to get to 170!!! I admit that I kind of gave up around the 7th hour and it was midnight.. does anyone have any insight as to what I may have done wrong, right, not enough of or too much of?

post #2 of 17
A few return questions in order to help...

1. What temp did you have it in at?

2. What temp did you finally pull it out at?

3. Did you spritz hourly during smoking?

4. Did you add a braising liquid when you wrapped it?

A lot of charts out there tell us 225-250 degrees but I personally like it lower (200-210) and am willing to keep in on the smoker longer and I spritz every hour or so after the first hour. I sometimes will wrap it in foil at the 160-170 mark but will add liquid at that time to ensure it stays moist and pull out of the smoker at 205* and let rest for at least an hour, maybe two.
post #3 of 17
the butts I do average 2 hours per pound. I smoke em @ 220-250 degrees.

No wrap in foil while on the smoker, & no spritz & then pulled off the smoker when the butt is @ 195-200 degrees, then they get wrapped in foil with a bit of apple juice, & some rub, and tossed in a cooler for a couple hours before pulling.

good luck with your next attempt.
post #4 of 17
Heck I have had butts that size at 220-230f go easily 6-8 hours before they hit 205. I think also Mr Mac hit it right on the head when He asked if you let it rest for an hour. It needs time to re-distribute the juices throughout the meat and become mondo tender and yummy.
post #5 of 17
Pork butts can handle temps closer to 250...but I'm not telling anyone what temp to smoke at biggrin.gif

I'm just saying, if you have a smoker that uses charcoal or wood, and you don't feel like smoking them for 13 hours, you can smoke at 250-260 and they'll turn out fine.

Also, if you take the internal temps up to 185 or 190, and THEN foil/cooler/rest/etc...you'll get a lot more tender results.
post #6 of 17
It does sound like a long time but every piece of meat has a mind of it's own. It really sounds like you hit the dreaded platea. Some butt hit them and some don't. It's where the meat decides to stop cooking and there's not alot you can do about it just wait and when it whats to start back cooking it will. What temp was your smoker?? Then when you foiled was the thermometer reading 170??? Did you test your thermometer before you used it?? After you answer all of those then we can answer your butt delimma. So hang in there this is why your here and we are too. You have question we have answers.
post #7 of 17
post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 
thanks for all the quick responses!!

Let me try to answer a few of these as best I can

1 tried to keep the temp at 200 225

2 190 or so is when I pulled it off

3&4.. no to both I am assuming that I should have spritzed and what should I have put in it when I wrap it?

I let it rest for an hour.. on the counter in the foil... no cooler...

I have the Taylor thermometer as suggested here...it hasnt failed me in the temp department before so I assume that it is correct.

Thanks again to all for the help.. I will try again soon armed with new knowledge!!
post #9 of 17
You needed to bring it up to 205 for pulling, 190 was too low of a finished temp.
post #10 of 17
I would cook at slightly higher temps, be sure to put some liquid in the foil when you go to let it rest...and after it's wrapped in foil - if you don't have a cooler, stick it in the microwave (don't turn on...it's just to insulate the heat! :-) or better yet, wrap an old blanket or towel around it after foiling.

The goal, is to keep it really hot for at least an hour, so that the meat finishes breaking down and the juices have a chance to redistribute back into the meat!

Try again soon and good luck!
post #11 of 17
These guys give great advice...Another thing to consider is that if you probe with a thermapen etc...If the probe does not go in and out with NO resistance-the meat is not gonna pull nicely.

Same with Briskets.On some the probe goes in and out with no resistance-tender-at 190 degree and other times its 205 degree.

The meat is a huge factor.There are some much tougher pieces etc....
post #12 of 17
It sounds like I'm pulling your leg, but when you hit the dreaded plateau and it goes for more than an hour or more take the meat out of the smoker and smack it a couple of times with the flat of your hand or a meat mallet turned sidways. Believe it or don't this often will shock it out of its lethargy and back to steady rising temperatures. A trick I learned in the chat. PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif
post #13 of 17
Sounds crazy enough it'll work, I will try this on my next stall. Guess sometimes it just needs a good spanking to get it's mind right.

To the OP, your next one will be better. The next one always is in my experience!
post #14 of 17
Forget the thermometer, its just something that can fail. Grab that bone and when it pulls free its done.
post #15 of 17
Are you sure your thermometer is correct, my brother thought he was smoking at 225°, I had him check his thermometer and he was smoking at about 425°
post #16 of 17
hmm. I've never wraped a butt in anything, unless I was transporting it, or holding it for dinner a couple hours away. Smoke it to over 190 then let sit on the counter until its cool enough to handle and rip it apart. Dont overthink it.
post #17 of 17
I've found that lwhile earnin to smoke your better off starting from the basics and move into experimenting. My first butts were smoked at 225-250 with a rub.... no spritz, no foil... smoked to 195 to 205. The bone falls out and the meat falls apart. From there I started experimenting with the spritz and foiling etc. There is no reason you shouldn't be able to turn out a mouth waterin fall apart pork butt by keeping to the basics. As already mentioned... you have to know what temp your cooking at. A therm that has been calibrated to know it's correct needs to be sitting on your rack you are smoking the butt. Understand that everytime you open the door your adding to your smoking time. I don't open mine unless I'm putting something else in. You have to make sure the temp probe your checkin your internal with is absolutley correct also. After you have been smoking awhile your gonna get a feel for when to check it. I can tell when I'm done with a strami or butt just from the feel of the temp probe. And as stated... the bone is falling out with no resistance on a butt. I don't put a temp probe in my meat until I feel it's past the 140 mark. If you stick to these basics... you'll turn out some good Q.

Every smoker and every method is going to vary your smoke time. Keep a little journal and write down your start time, your temp, the wood your usin, and times when you check internal and the end time. Also jot down your results. This helps you know how long it takes to smoke on your smoker... with your methods. Always smoke to temp not time. Resist the temptation of lookin at it.
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