Smoking my first pork butt tomorrow!!!

Discussion in 'Pork' started by dkite22, Apr 4, 2014.

  1. dkite22

    dkite22 Newbie

    Hey guys, getting ready to smoke my first pork butt tomorrow.  My plan is to smoke on rack until 160 degrees then foil for the remainder.  I have heard you should spray apple juice or other liquid on it during the process.  I was curious what others do with spraying the meat.  I was thinking of spraying it a few times before it is foiled and then one last time before wrapping it in foil.  I can't imagine spraying it once it is foiled since that would involve unwrapping it. 

    I also heard that using apple juice from concentrate is better than just plain apple juice. 

    Thoughts and feedback would be greatly appreciated!
  2. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    It is ok to put some liquid in the foil if you wish but I have found little benefit to spritzing a Pork Butt. Every time you open the smoker you can be adding 20 minutes or more to the smoking time, the smoker needs to recover it's heat and evaporative cooling sucks heat out of the meat increasing the cook time. Opinions will vary, so if you chose to spritz, once an hour is plenty...JJ 
  3. noboundaries

    noboundaries Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I don't spray pork butts or shoulders, only spare ribs.  I didn't find any advantage to spraying butts or shoulders I'm going to wrap.  I don't wrap my ribs so spraying definitely makes a difference in their bark.     

    DEFINITELY don't bother spraying once foiled.  Waste of apple juice.

    I've sprayed with fresh pressed cider, apple concentrate, and apple juice, which is basically flavored grape juice.  Cider and concentrate were my preferences. 
  4. dkite22

    dkite22 Newbie

    Thanks so much guys for the feedback and I think I will go ahead and skip the Spritzing all together!  I was thinking you needed to do it to keep it moist but sounds like the pork butt will take care of itself. 
  5. noboundaries

    noboundaries Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Be sure to come back here dkite22 and let us know how it turned out.  Don't forget the pics!
  6. Fail proof...

    Okay, this is easy.

    1) buy a 9 pound blade in Boston butt. You will want the leftovers.

    2) The day before you plan to smoke, rub the butt down with yellow mustard. Plain yellow mustard. Then apply the rub you want heavily. If you make it that's fine, but most store-bought pork rubs will work. Put it in a pan, Cover it with saran wrap, and refrigerate overnight.

    3) this will take probably 12 hours to cook. So make sure you pull your meat out of the refrigerator in time to come to room temperature. Heavily inject the butt with equal parts apple cider vinegar and apple juice with a splash or two of Worchester shire sauce

    4) heat your smoker to 225°. Put your meat on the smoker with out a pan fat side up. Don't foil it yet. Cook until you reach an internal temp of 175°. Put your thermometer in the thickest part of the meat and make sure it does not touch the bone.

    5) once you reach 175°, pull the meat off of the grill and place into an aluminum foil pan. Pour one half of a cup of equal parts apple cider vinegar and apple juice into the pan and cover with aluminum foil. Put the meat back onto the smoker and take it off when you reach an internal temp of 205°

    You will know if it's done when the bone blade pulls free. Make sure you let the roast set for at least 30 minutes before pulling it apart.
  7. dkite22

    dkite22 Newbie

    You guys are awesome and so glad I found this site.  I am doing most of what Trevor mentioned but did not buy the apple cider vinegar so will have to go without the injection.  Hoping to post pics tomorrow evening!
  8. c farmer

    c farmer Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I must do mine wrong. I pull from fridge and put the rub on. Then get the smoker fired up and once at temp put the meat on. Then leave it cook til the bone wiggles. Nothing else.

    KISS method. Everyone loves it.
  9. dkite22

    dkite22 Newbie

    She is all ready to go come 6am!
  10. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Guess that makes two of us cf !
  11. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Please, I'am not trying to be rude here..... But please do not let your pork sit out and get to room temp. before putting on your smoker !! IMHO, your just askin for trouble doin this..... Just my 2 cents !
  12. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Please let us know how your smoke turns out .... Let's see some more pics. Thumbs Up
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2014
  13. noboundaries

    noboundaries Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Times three!

    Cold meat absorbs smoke longer and safely climbs through the 4 hour danger zone.
  14. trikefreak

    trikefreak Smoke Blower

    "Cold meat absorbs smoke longer and safely climbs through the 4 hour danger zone."

    I didn't realize this was a fact. For some silly reason, I thought warm meat would absorb smoke better, but I'm just a Hillbilly. [​IMG]

    But seriously, when it comes to pork butts, you really have to try hard to screw one up on the smoker. My biggest mistake is running out of time, and having to toss it in the oven.
  15. Ok let me clarify a bit then. Let your pork butt sit out for about an hour or so, so it's not so friggin cold when you put it on your smoker - room temperature.
  16. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Trevor, we are not trying to bag on ya bud !! There are just some folks here that are in the same place we all were at some point when we started on this great smokin adventure.... We just need to make sure we are clear with folks as we don't want anyone getting sick.... I and others know ya meant well and your method, a lot of it I think we all would agree will work just fine if that's the route ya wanna proceed with.... Just the room temp comment on pork, some new folks that are just starting out may not know exactly what ya meant.... That's all !!

    Take care,

  17. Times 4  [​IMG]
    I agree. I've never understood this - the meat will warm up a LOT faster in a hot smoker than it will sitting on a counter  [​IMG]  
  18. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Smoke flavor is dependent on the wood used, how much is used and the length of time the food spends in the smoke, not on the initial temperature of the meat at the time it is placed on the cooking grate.
  19. noboundaries

    noboundaries Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    No argument at all.  I meant there's no smoke on the kitchen counter but there is smoke in the smoker.  If there is smoke on your kitchen counter, you got bigger problems than the temperature of your meat.

    Bringing meat to room temp works for thinner cuts of meat like steaks that cook quickly.  It helps provide for a more consistent through and through finish.  When I room temp a steak I use a metal thawing plate to transfer the available heat from the room more quickly to a cold steak.  Then I sear the meat and finish the cook with indirect heating on a hot grill to give a nice consistent finish through to the center of the steak.  

    Room temping a butt or shoulder?  Nope.  It will take hours for even a 4 lb butt at 40F to absorb enough heat from a 70F room to reach thermal equilibrium.   Anyone can conduct their own experiment.  Let a butt or shoulder sit on the counter for an hour, then put a probe in it only 1/2" deep, read the thermometer.  It MIGHT read 45F.  Instead, throw it on the smoker cold and let it warm up safely in a 225-275F delicious hickory/pecan/apple/cherry smoke filled environment. 
  20. I smoke my pork butt at 275F to an internal temp of around 170F or so (until the bark has set, passes the scratch test and is the right color).  I don't spritz it but if you do make sure to do it only after the bark has set.   The bark will get a lot of moisture after foiling because then it is braising.   Then continue to cook in the foil until it probes like butter and the bone wiggles loose.

    I put the pork butt in the smoker as cold as possible. From my understanding it takes on more smoke flavor the colder it is.  Some day I am going to throw my rubbed down pork butt in the freezer for 20 minutes before smoking just to see if it is even better.
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2014

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