Fat side up or down?

Discussion in 'Pork' started by nickdentist, Sep 5, 2007.

  1. I have heard differing opinions about whether to smoke a pork shoulder with the fat side up or down. I have heard to place the fat side up so the juices of the fat will moisten the meat. Then, I have heard to place the fat side down to protect the meat incase there is a temp. spike. Just curious to what people's opinion is on this subject.

  2. meowey

    meowey Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    My personal choice is to leave it down. I find that fat side up or flipping the butt interferes with the development of the bark. Just my $0.02.

    Take care, have fun, and do good!


  3. bbq bubba

    bbq bubba Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    HERE WE GO!!! Let the battle begin! [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
  4. smoked

    smoked Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    matter of preference is all....meowey has a good point of bark developement, others will flip the fat side during the cook..... [​IMG]
  5. hillbillysmoker

    hillbillysmoker Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Your choice. Many like the fat side up saying that it provides moisture for the meat. Others like fat side down so that they don't eliminate the bark when they take away the fat. I do fat side down because I love the bark, but it is a roll you own on this one. Do whichever you like and you will still have excellent results.
  6. adb551

    adb551 Smoke Blower

    I say fat side down, as mentioned before, because of the bark. I believe that the "fat adds moisture" thing is a myth.

    But I have done them both ways, and I have even been known to eat a good chunk of the fat if my wife is not looking!
    elkhorn98 likes this.
  7. smokebuzz

    smokebuzz Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I don't think it really matters,another reason i had herd for fat down was ,any fat in the meat will break down and sit on top of the fat cap and stay in the meat. half donzen of 1 6 of the other
  8. flash

    flash Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I use to always do fat cap up, cause I was taught that way. I too noticed better bark when fat cap is down though. Sometimes after the wrap, I will flip it for a while and go fat cap up. But you gotta love that bark.
  9. fatback joe

    fatback joe Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Fat down for me for pretty much the same reasons as already stated.
  10. bigarm's smokin

    bigarm's smokin Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    thanks guys, I learned something today. I always have had the fat up but now it will go down. I'd rather have good bark. Terry
  11. fatback joe

    fatback joe Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Maybe it is time for a fat sideways cook.........[​IMG][​IMG]
  12. hawgheaven

    hawgheaven Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I've done it both ways and couldn't tell the difference in taste... butt I usually smoke it fat side down for reasons previously stated.
  13. geek with fire

    geek with fire Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    From the rookie's perspective, who just did one this weekend, I'd say if you are going to wrap it and pull it, I can't see that it matters from the juice perspective. When mine came off, I drained all of the juice into a quart jar (to separate the fat). I cooked it fat side down, just to keep the meat side from getting over cooked (whether that would have been an issue or not...remember...rookie). With that much juice, I can't see that the melted fat would have tenderized it any more.

    My 0.02 USD,
  14. low&slow

    low&slow Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Im a flipper. I flip mine about every 2 hours or so. Gives me a chance to take a peek at it too.
  15. bigal

    bigal Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Personal choice. My opinion is that, since my heat source is below the meat, I put fat down on everything and no flipp'n. I also think that since I'm smoke'n above the boil'n point that it will "perculate" up through the meat.

    To each their own. Bark is a strong point, besides.....your gonna cut the fat off anyway......right?

    Probably won't make a dimes worth of difference, but try both to see how you like it.
  16. Thanks for all the help yall. I will do it fat side down and see how it comes out.
  17. texas guy

    texas guy Newbie

    I am assuming Bark is the crust around the brisket, etc. I have only used my smoker (Great Ourdoors) twice. Both times put fat up. I was worried that if I put fat down, the upside of the brisket would dry out.

  18. deejaydebi

    deejaydebi Smoking Guru

    I'm a flipper too!
  19. wvsmokeman

    wvsmokeman Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I also flip.....[​IMG]
  20. johnd49455

    johnd49455 Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I learned somthin too. I learned to do butt before I found SMF & the BBQ bible said do it far side up[​IMG] now I see most here do butts fat side down. now I got something new to try .... again. Thanks all[​IMG]

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