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Pork Shanks...underrated?


Fire Starter
Joined Nov 9, 2015
Haven't posted in a while but that doesn't mean I haven't been cooking, curing, stuffing and smoking things!  Just nothing out of the ordinary really except for some Reuben sausages but I didn't take any good pictures of them unfortunately.

Figured I'd share this cook since when searching I didn't find much of what I wanted to do.  Went camping with some friends over the weekend and wanted to cook something easy for them that they may not have had before.  2 days before the trip, I stopped at our local Restaurant Depot and got 8 pork shanks on sale for $20...each shank was ~1.25 lbs raw.  Injected them with 10% w/w of the meat (assumed 30% bone weight) with a 2% salt + 2% light brown sugar in water solution including 156 ppm cure #1 for color...they sat in that brine submerged for 48 hours.  Took them out, rinsed and dried them and slathered them with yellow mustard and rubbed with my pork rub, then put in a ziplock for transport.  Loaded the food, gear and the Oklahoma Joe Longhorn and all the appurtenances including enough 1 year seasoned red oak (it's not for the camp fire!).

All set-up at the site (Blue Rocks in Lenhartsville, PA).

Put those shanks on once everything was heated up.  Thankfully my phone adds a timestamp to pictures, otherwise I'd have to guess pretty hard for the cook times.  Apparently, a lot of beer was required for this cook.

On at 12:30 pm.

Let them go @ ~250 F for a few hours, they seemed to stall at 150 F.  I sprayed them intermittently with apple cider vinegar to help slow the cook.

2:30 pm

I let them stall naked since I didn't want them done too early...I wanted them to break down enough so they weren't tough.  They were wrapped when the color looked good @ 5:30 pm.  Added apple cider vinegar to the foil.

I reduced the fire a little to slow the cook and when they felt tender they were removed and I believe rested for 15 minutes or so.  The following pic was taken at 7:50 pm and it's half gone as you can see.  The built-in handle is convenient.  I would definitely make these again.

These are certainly worth trying if you want pulled pork on a stick.  Just have to check the tenderness while they're cooking so they aren't tough but don't fall apart...these were perfect.



SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
Staff member
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Joined Jun 22, 2009
Nice job Nate!

They  look delicious!



smokin monkey

Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Group Lead
Joined Oct 27, 2013
Love Shanks Pork or Lamb.

Good looking food!


Legendary Pitmaster
OTBS Member
Joined Aug 31, 2014
Those look tasty! I don't see them around either.

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