No foil butt, first time, update it's done!!!

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Jun 22, 2009
Central Florida (Sebring)
I was inspired to smoke a butt without foiling by Eric (forluvofsmoke). I have always foiled at 165, but this time it's staying in the smoker unfoiled till 205. I crosshatched the fat cap ( normally I would just trim it off, but since I am not foiling I wanted to keep some fat on. Here's a shot of the butt ready for the rub.


Next the mustard.


Next the rub.


Then in the fridge overnight & in the morning a good coat of brown sugar & in the smoker.


Put it in at 6:30 this morning, it's now almost 4:00 PM & it has been stalled at 168 for almost 4 hours. We were planning to have PP for dinner, but may have it for breakfast instead. Will update as soon as this sucker starts to move along.
It finally moved to 169, I'm hoping the stall is over. I think this guy may take 14-15 hours. Were gonna boil some macaroni cause I know we won't be having PP anytime soon.
The other thing that's going to be interesting is how long will the WSM hold it's temp without adding any charcoal. I filled the ring with kingsford regular blue bag and it still looks like there's quite a bit of unlit charcoal in there. It's been 10 1/2 hours since it started. Stay tuned.
It's been in the smoker for 11 hours & it just hit 170. Took a pic so you could see how the bark was developing. Don't know how it will turn out , but it looks really good so far.

Hey Al, My smoke Sat. was the same, started 7AM held at 165 forever. At dinner time we had smoked mac & cheese and BBQ beans. Had pp at 10PM. I wasn't waitin till the next day. I always go with no foil and love it.

Of coarse we expect some Qview when it's done.
Well it's 8:00 PM. The butt is at 174. WSM still holding 225, haven't added any charcoal yet, almost 14 hours. I'm getting sleepy!
Don't fall asleep now AL your in the home stretch...PP is looking great,that extra brown sugar really is makin the bark!!!

Can't wait to see the end, and your feelings on the no foil!
Hey Al!

Just caught this a bit will take quite awhile to get to 205* as I read your mention of. That's the drawback of no-foiled smokes...but if it's bark you're after you will be rewarded. I think you'd be fine at 195* for no-foiled due to the extra time it takes just to get over 180*+...that has alot to do with the tenderness when they soak in the heat slower for longer periods like that.

I've held foiled meats at 185-200* chamber temps to bring them at that temp for 4-8 hours for a tender finish and never hit the prescribed temps for pulled meats...not even close.

Anyway, if you can hit 195* and stick it a couple times to probe for tenderness, you'll know if iut's ready. Mine almost fell apart at 200* lastnight when I yanked it out to rest, so I could have easily shut it down at 195*...mayvbe a bigger shoulder than what you've got, but it's still worth checking it out.

Lookin' mighty good so far, brother! The color of that bark speaks volumes!

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Thanks Eric,

It's almost 1:00AM, the butt is at 185. I can't believe the WSM is still holding 225 and I haven't added any charcoal. That's over 18 hours! Now there's a line of storms headed this way so I may have to finish this in the oven. I'm really getting tired.

You have much more patience than me!!

I always wrap and finish in the oven at 300°, but the bark gets mushy. 

I like the idea of no foil

Was the meat dry at all?

Al!! You are usually up and posting by now.....

Need a picture of the butt that wouldnt quit..

Thanks Eric,

It's almost 1:00AM, the butt is at 185. I can't believe the WSM is still holding 225 and I haven't added any charcoal. That's over 18 hours! Now there's a line of storms headed this way so I may have to finish this in the oven. I'm really getting tired.
Is it Done Yet Dad---Is it done yet?

This way is better for young guys---They have a better chance of still being around when it's done.

Hey Al where are ya ? Sleepin I bet. I know I would be  
Well guys, it started raining really hard around 2:00 AM, so I checked the butt & it was at 190. I put it in a foil pan & brought it inside. I poked it all over with a toothpick & it felt done, so I just covered the pan with foil & put it in the oven set at 175. I didn't want to foil it & put in a cooler cause I wanted the bark to be firm. Then I finally went to sleep. Got up this morning & checked the butt & it looked beautiful. Check it out.


Now to see how it pulls. Is there any way to not burn the s#!* out of your hands pulling pork? Judy couldn't keep her hands out of the pan I was putting it in. She said it's the best PP she has ever had, and I have to agree. It was unbelievably juicy & the bark was to die for. You can see the bone pulled out clean.


The photo doesn't do it justice. The smoke ring went all the way to the bone. The whole butt had a pinkish, red color. Here's a closer look. It doesn't have any finishing sauce on it, the juice is from the butt.


I learned a few things on this smoke. First I will never foil a butt again. Second I will plan on at least 15 to 18 hours of smoke time, maybe even 20. So next time I will start it around 7:00 PM. Get a good nights sleep and when I get up in the morning I'll put a probe in & see where I'm at. Third and the most amazing part I found that with a full charcoal ring my WSM would go 18+ hours. Now I kinda cheated here I filled it to the top then made a pyramid in the middle, so it may have been more than 1 full ring. When I finally shut it down at 2:00 AM it was still holding 225, that's 19 1/2 hours without adding any charcoal. When I cleaned it out this AM it still had some charcoal left to burn. is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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