How long in the cooler?

  • 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.

richoso1

Gone but not forgotten. RIP
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Jun 21, 2007
8,432
41
If it is tightly wrapped and covered with towels and/or a blanket, it will remain hot for several hours, as long as you don't open the cooler. Good luck my friend.
 

mossymo

Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
May 30, 2007
4,952
1,536
Glenburn, North Dakota
As richoso1 stated "tightly wrapped and covered with towels and/or a blanket"; if I recall correctly I have went 5 hours cooler time and upon opening the foil still having plenty of steam leaving the package of goodies.
 

cripplecreek

Fire Starter
Original poster
Thread starter
Thanks guys.  At what point would you decide that you can know longer wait and that you should go ahead and take it out of the cooler, slice, and refridgerate?  (i.e. if brisket goes into cooler at 5 a.m. could it stay there until noontime meal?)  I just hate the idea of doing a long smoke and then not digging in to it as soon as it comes out of the cooler.
 
Last edited:

Bearcarver

SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Group Lead
Sep 12, 2009
45,246
17,973
Macungie, PA
I think I've read on here some did it for 12 hours in a really good wrapped brisket & cooler.

I don't think I would trust that without a few tests. Any way to keep your probe in it, so you can monitor it ?

Bear
 

pineywoods

SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
Staff member
Administrator
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
OTBS Admin
Group Lead
Mar 22, 2008
28,148
3,130
Florida
The brisket needs to stay above 140 degrees or be reheated to above 140 degrees. The time you can do this in a cooler will vary with the type of cooler used and the ambient temperatures as well as many other factors.
 

cripplecreek

Fire Starter
Original poster
Thread starter
Leaving the probe in is a great idea bearcarver.  If it drops below 145 by mealtime is it best to reheat before or after slicing?  By the way, I'm really looking forward to being able to answering more questions on this forum than I'm asking.  This is the most helpfull site of any kind that I have ever been own.  Thanks to you and all who have responded to my many questions.  Its really made smoking fun for me.
 

mballi3011

Gone but not forgotten. RIP
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Mar 12, 2009
14,477
56
icon_cool.gif


I'm with Jerry (pineywoods) on this one to. If you are knowingly gonna leave the meat in the cooler for an extended amount of time I would leave a probe in the meat and take it out before it hits 140°ish or so. But make sure that you pack the cooler tight with old towels too. 
 

bpopovitz

Meat Mopper
Jul 29, 2008
243
28
Central Indiana
Two words: thermal mass.  Last weekend I had 5 butts coolered for about 12 hours.  None of them dropped below 150.  I think is is not only because of the cooler, towels and foil but the fact that there were 5 of them.  If it is just one brisket on a large cooler there isnt' as much thermal mass.  If you have to keep it longer than a few hours you could always heat up some fire brick wrap them in foil and towels to add mass.  Just an idea.  The probe idea is a great idea lets you keep an eye without having to open the cooler up.