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First Chuck Roast... Fail :(

Joined May 11, 2016
Greetings everyone,

On Sunday, the lady and I decided to smoke something spur of the moment while we were out getting a couple items for dinner. We were in Aldi, and their cuts of meat change periodically, and I decided to see what they had.

They had a pre-marinated Chuck Roast that was Bourbon Brown Sugar. It was a small 2.37 lb, and I knew would not take too long in the smoker (including resting time), and since I didn't have time to marinate it, I grabbed it.

I got home fired up the OK Joe and brought it up to about 275 then threw the chuck on to sit for a bit:

I kept the temp between 275 and 340 until the inside temp reached 160 and it had a good visual bark:

I took the Chuck off the smoker, wrapped it in two layers of foil, and put it back on the smoker to keep the temp climbing:

I kept the temp right around 275 for the foil-wrapped Chuck until the internal temp reached 203. I then pulled it off, wrapped it in two blankets, and placed it in a cooler to bring the temp down slowly. When I was wrapping it in the blankets, there was a lot of 'juice' coming out of the hole in the foil where the temp probe was, so I took that as a good sign.

After resting for a little over two hours in the cooler, I took it out and unwrapped it to have my first look at the finished Chuck Roast:

It looked and smelled delicious, but seemed a little firm to the touch. As I started to carve it, I noticed a good smoke ring, and color:

It did not look as juicy as I hoped it would and as I continued carving it and tried my first piece, my fear was realized, it was DRY!

It had a delicious flavor, and was not too tough, but it was very dry.

I'm not sure if I went too hot for such a small piece, or if I did something else wrong, but my first Chuck Roast was not a success.

Any suggestions for my next try at a Chuck would be appreciated.





Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Joined Aug 16, 2016
Sounds like you might have lost your juice when you foiled it. Generally I will put the roast in a foil pan with additional liquid- apple juice, Dr.Pepper, Worsy, etc. and then foil that. Also, 340 is awful high. In fact 230 to 250 is normal and some go as high as 275.


SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Group Lead
Joined Sep 12, 2009
That's a bit higher Temp than I use, but some use those temps.

Don't know if this will help you, but here's my Step by Step for a Single Chuck Roast:
Pulled Beef Chucky



Master of the Pit
SMF Premier Member
Joined Aug 13, 2015
I think you let the temps get too high, like victim said. My offset likes to run at 260 to 280, which works for me for everything from ribs to brisket, but I set an alarm for 300!
It just got done too fast.
Don’t give up on Chuckies. I do mine in a foil pan as well.


Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
Joined Aug 13, 2015
I really don't like pre marinated meat unless I am doing it myself.
It sounds like you done most everything right. Was the roast probe tender?
I have had chuckie's be probe tender anywhere from 200-210
I have also done chucks in a pan with a little beef broth.


Smoking Fanatic
Joined Mar 11, 2017
Good lookin chuck there! I find that if I cook higher range of Temp like 280+ then my finished internal temp will be around 210ish.. Otherwise it will be a tad dry.. If I cooked at 225ish then sure 203ish would be pretty spot on


Master of the Pit
Joined Aug 9, 2015
My ok joe likes to run hot as well. No problem with that, hot and fast! Yes, chucks I always put in a disposable pan with some stock added, then cover with foil.


Smoke Blower
Joined Sep 24, 2013
My guess is that you did not cook it long enough to render the collagen, therefore getting a drier outcome. Hard to really tell from here though.

Rings Я Us

Smoking Guru
Joined Jul 3, 2017
Hmm.. I foil with a bit of beef stock or broth at the 160 or so point.. You pulled it and then went right to a cooler..
Should be a probe going through it like it was jello before it came off. Then rest it , open up the foil and let it cool down from over 200 to like 180 Then wrap it back up in foil or new foil.
It sure sounds yummy and looks good though. Try another.. that one looks like a ball shape. I'm used to the flat ones ..
Like this.


Smoke Blower
Joined Aug 2, 2014
It doesn't look like it had much fat inside it. Maybe you got a lean one?

Cook next one lower and slower.

When I get beef that doiesn't wind up the way I want I sometimes chop it up and make chili. It always makes a great pot of chili.


Legendary Pitmaster
OTBS Member
Joined Aug 31, 2014
I don’t like the preseasoned meats either. I like to smoke mine to 160-170 depending on color the put them in foil pans with French onion soup seal them up till there fall apart tender.

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