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1st Attempt at Pulled Pork, with Q-View of course

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
My son's 2nd Birthday party is today, Saturday and I have decided to smoke some pork butts for pulled pork. Pictures will be updated throughout the process.

Thursday night I purchased two pork butts, 8.86 lbs. & 9 lbs. I then slathered those babies in yellow mustard and coated with The Slabs Kyle Style BBQ Pork Rub.

Here they are all wrapped up and ready for the fridge.

Friday night at 10PM, I fired up the 40" MES and let it preheat for a couple of hours. I also made sure my new ET-73's were reading correctly per the boiling water test.

With the MES set at 235*, water in the pan, and hickory smoldering...I put the 2 butts on at 12:15AM.

And now we wait. As of this writing (an hour into the smoke), one butt is reading 68* and the other 59*. My rack temps are reading slightly lower than the MES set point, 203* & 219*, but I don't think I need to bump up the smoker temp just yet...I'm waiting to see if the probes catch up.

More to come...
post #2 of 20
Those are gonna turn out awesome! I just did my first one in my 30" MES a couple of days ago (here's the thread) and my rack temp was much lower than what the MES said, also. As long as your ET-73's are calibrated like you said then you should be good to go.

It does take a long time, though. Mine took 12 hours including the resting time (I just left it in the cooler for 1 hour). I hope you have plenty of beer! smile.gif
post #3 of 20
Thread Starter 
2-1/2 hours in and just gave them a spritz of apple juice. Meat temps are 104* for the 8.86lb and 114* for the 9 lb. Bumped the smoker temp up to 240* just to be sure I got out of the danger zone within 4 hours. All is good so far.

post #4 of 20
Thread Starter 
Been spritzing with apple juice about every hour or so when I check & add wood chips. 4 hours and 45 minutes into this and both butts are at 146* and slowing rising. Once they hit 170*, I'll foil and take to 208*, then pull, wrap in foil again and throw in a cooler.

Nothing to do but sit back and wait.

post #5 of 20
Those are looking great!

Waiting for the final product PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif
post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 
8 hours in and the butts are reading 152* for the 9lb and 156* for the 8.86lb. They were both reading between 162-165*, so I adjusted the probes just to be sure. I expect them to stall around here for awhile if I'm correct.

If you see anything that looks weird with the temps, please let me know.

They are shaping up pretty good:

post #7 of 20
Looks good.PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif

You could bump the MES up to the point where your grate temps are 240° or even (GASP) 250° and it wouldn't hurt a thing.

Looks like some tasty pulled pork is in your near future. PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif

post #8 of 20
Looks like its coming along nicely.
post #9 of 20
Thread Starter 
Well...12 hours in and the 8.86lb butt hit 170*, so I gave it a mist of apple juice and double wrapped it in foil. The 9lb butt is currently at 161*, so it won't be long until it needs to be wrapped in foil as well. I'm taking both up to 208* and then throwing in a cooler for a couple of hours before pulling apart.

One mistake I made was trying to grab the butt off of the rack to put in foil instead of sliding it off the rack into the foil. While I knew it would be pretty hot, I didn't account for it breaking apart when I tried to grab it. If it's this tender at 170*, it's going to be fantastic later.

post #10 of 20
Thread Starter 
Ok...now a question for the experts :D

How quick of a rise can I expect once the butts are foiled? The one I just foiled has risen 1* in the last 35 minutes. Is this normal? If so, then it doesn't look like I'll be putting these in the cooler anytime soon. I'm kinda freaking out as guests will be here, ready to eat in about 4 hours. Any suggestions? Current temp of smoker is 250*.
post #11 of 20
Just leave them in the smoker till you are ready, no need to cooler them, they will fall apart. Set the smoker to 210'.
post #12 of 20
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the reply Ron, but I'm kinda confused....bear with me. One butt is foiled and at 173*. The other has yet to be foiled as it's currently at 163*...I was going to foil that when it hit 170*. Should I decrease the temp on the MES from 250* to 210* now or wait until I foil the other butt? And why would I want to decrease the temp if I'm having a hard time getting the butts up to the proper temp when set at 250*? Thanks.
post #13 of 20
Well, you now have the meat smoked. The next step is to foil and braise to make them pull. Many times I have foiled at 160' and turned the MES down and gone to bed till the next morning.

Hope that makes sense.
post #14 of 20
Now I am not the expert that Ron is but my 2 cents is leave it @ 250 and you should be fine in 4 hours. Just let them sit about 15 minutes if you can't put them in a cooler so the juices can redistrubute.
post #15 of 20
Lookin good so far.
Good luck, I'm sure there will be many more to follow.
post #16 of 20
you could pull it @ 200 and they will still fall apart.
post #17 of 20
Thread Starter 
Holy crap, what a great experience. Big thanks to RonP for talking me off the ledge and reducing my stress levels...thanks again Ron!

The pulled pork turned out pretty good. I left it in the smoker until about 5:15PM, let it rest for about 20-30 minutes, and then started to pull it apart....bone slid out of both pretty easily. When pulling, it seemed alittle mushy, but as it cooled, it firmed up pretty well. I couldn't finish pulling it before people started helping themselves to freshly pulled chunks. This will definately be on my list to do again.

Here's the 9lb after pulling:

post #18 of 20
THAT'S THE 9 POUNDER?????? biggrin.gif

You obviously won't have this problem, but I took a tray full of leftovers to my cousin's tonight, tossed in some apple juice, and heated it up in the oven with some foil on top. It didn't dry out, and everyone loved it! His son even ate a plate without any sauce or a bun (with his fingers, lol -- my kind of guy!). smile.gif

That's some good stuff right there! It's well worth the time and energy required, is it not?

I'm happy to see that your 1st was as successful as mine, and I hope that it encourages others to try it that haven't already.

post #19 of 20
Looks great man, glad it turned out. Glad to help.
post #20 of 20


Yum, nice job on the pulled pork...points.gif
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