• Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.

Butterflying a Pork Shoulder?


Fire Starter
Joined Aug 7, 2010
Whats up all. A couple of days ago I was at a bbq. I was talking to the resident cook.

He said that when he does a pork shoulder he butterflies it and removes the bone. I have never read about that nor seen it in a video. Im new to smoking so I wouldnt know. Can this be done? Should it be done? Has anyone done it? If so how did it turnout?


Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
Joined Aug 27, 2008
A few reasons I can think of why I wouldn't do it:

1) extra work for no forseen reason or benefit;

2) the bone acts as a doneness indicator, allowing you to see the true shrinkage of the meat, as well as determine if the connective tissues have melted away by being able to pull the bone from the shoulder as a test;

3) the bone adds flavor to the meat as it cooks...real meat stocks are flavored with bones as the base

4) cutting the shoulder open presents me with three questions:

4.1) am I going to reclose the roast before cooking, and if so, can I get the meat's internal temp up high enough soon enough to be safe (being it is no longer a whole muscle meat being cut and closed);

If I leave the roast butterflied when I cook it:

4.2 am I willing to accept that the cooking time will be greatly reduced which can in turn lead to a less tender finished product?

4.3) am I willing to loose tons of natural juices during the cooking, being I increased the actual surface area of the pork shoulder?

Too darn complicated, with too many reasons why I wouldn't de-bone a shoulder, so I won't.

Last edited:


Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Dec 29, 2009

Leave it in for Pulled Pork.

Butterfly if you're making BBB



Legendary Pitmaster
SMF Premier Member
Joined Oct 17, 2009
Like the above posts^^^^. Why cut it out when it will fall out.


Gone but not forgotten. RIP
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Mar 12, 2009

I'm in full agreement with the above mentioned process. I like to leave in the bone it has alot of really good flavor in it too. 

Latest posts

Top Bottom
  AdBlock Detected

We noticed that you're using an ad-blocker, which could block some critical website features. For the best possible site experience please take a moment to disable your AdBlocker.