Smoking pork butt

Discussion in 'Pork' started by jimmybh, Mar 25, 2013.

  1. jimmybh

    jimmybh Fire Starter

    My first smoker to arrive any day now. I'm gearing up and gathering info. Some methods call for placing the butt in a pan and some place the butt directly on the smoker rack. I would appreciate any experienced opinions. Thanks, Jimmy
  2. kryinggame

    kryinggame Smoking Fanatic

  3. jimmybh

    jimmybh Fire Starter

    I've purchased a smokin-it 3. Thanks, Jimmy
  4. justagrillin'

    justagrillin' Newbie

    Hey Jim,

    Get ready for some fun!! Two ways I do my bone in butts, #1. with a aluminum pan that raises the meat and cook uncovered the whole way thru. #2. use the temp/time table with no pan.

    The first way is the easiest in that I'll cook at 225-250 'til I hit 205 and let it rest for 30 minutes before I chopp it.the great thing about butts is that they are forgiving in how you prepare them, but they still need loving just the same.In doing this way and the other the prep is the same,lite coat of mustard as adhesion for the spices and let it sit for up to 40 minutes to come to room temp. the size of the butt is important as well as you don't want a huge piece of meat to contend with due to the cooking time, rather two smaller, (I like 7-9 lbs.) to use. Once your meat is prepped and coming to temp, get your smoke ready. Once everything is a go, put your meat on and cook 1.5 hrs. per lb. around the 4th hour mark start monitoring the meat temp, though it is a way from being ready it will give you an idea as to the progress. Butts are known for having hang time during cooking where they will reach a temp and stall, I have yet to experience this but just the same be on a look out for it. A 12-14 hour slow smoke is normal and the pay off is worth the wait!!

    The second way is a little more in tailed but the end result is just as promising. Again the start is the same prep etc.. the procedure is not.You will want to start with the meat probe in the side of the meat. This way I use apple cider in spritzer bottle and start applying around the second hour. the first leg of the race will come when the temp hits 145, at which time you will want to rap in heavy foil with a 1/4 cup of cider added into the foil before  sealing and putting back on the smoker. since you wont be smoking at this time you can use charcoal to maintain heat. Next step is to watch the temp until it reaches 195. Once you have it carefully but the foiled rapped butt in to a towel and set int o a small cooler for around three hours. after the three hours carefully pull out of the cooler towel will be hot. Take off the towel and place foiled meat into a shallow pan and let rest for 15 minutes. After 15 min. slowly open foil but just enough to let out steam that is still inside and by doing doing so, you will let the juices pull back into the meat. After that open all the way and finish however you'd like. Alan
    buzzirko1976 likes this.
  5. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Best way is to put the meat, any meat, on one or more racks and a Drip Pan on the bottom Rack. Then if you wish to Foil a big Butt or Brisket you can move it to the Drip Pan and cover with foil to braise...JJ
    buzzirko1976 likes this.
  6. pgsmoker64

    pgsmoker64 Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    JJ is way ahead of me today!

    Smoke it directly on the rack.  I don't foil my butts because I am a bark junkie...luv that bark.  Some folks do like to foil in the interest of time and to maintain moisture - when they do Chef JJ has a great foiling sauce that you will love!

    If you need more info, just ask.

    Good luck,

  7. jimmybh

    jimmybh Fire Starter

    Thanks for the tips. Since I posted I have smoked 3 pork butts. I did a 3 day brine and a good rub and smoked directly on the racks. I'm a bark man also and it turned out moist with a great bark.

  8. tito santana

    tito santana Newbie

    doing a pork butt and two shoulder roast with mustard and dry rub over night smoking with pecan wood in a yoder smoker's Wichita.
  9. tjnamtiw

    tjnamtiw Fire Starter

    Just finished pulling an 8 pound butt that I used a vinegar 'mop' on for the first time.  OMG, it's good!  I was using a spice and brown sugar smothered coating before.  7 hours at 275 in my MES.  A little fast but needed it for supper!  I slept in.  [​IMG]   It still pulled very well and plenty moist.

  10. jimmybh

    jimmybh Fire Starter

    Looks really good. Nice Bark and I like the flavor of brown suger. I may lace my rub with a little more brown suger on my next smoked pork butt.
  11. tjnamtiw

    tjnamtiw Fire Starter

    When I use the brown sugar, I pack it on to the sides and top so that it's a solid covering.  For the one in the picture, I sliced it across the top and bottom so that it would accept and hold the liquid vinegar mix.  I only put it on 3 more times during the smoke and still got a nice bark on it.  
  12. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I rub just before insertion in the Smoker and then shut the lid until my temp. is reached. No opening the lid, you'll lose all the goodness. No wrapping,(too much cost for foil) and no looking , it's gonna be right where you left it doing  , it's thing .

      good looks...

     clean bone pull...

     and juicy as all get-out, Mmmmmm.

    Be Patient , watch estimated time and the temp. and when the stall is over and time to eat , nothing but deliciousness.

    have fun and as always . . .
  13. jimmybh

    jimmybh Fire Starter

    WOW!!! Great smoke ring.  I'm with you on doing the rub, closing the smoker door and letting that "PORKY" reach desired temp. Always comes out moist with a great bark.

  14. gadsden 1

    gadsden 1 Fire Starter

    Hey can you guys illuminate me on the differences between a 'pork butt' a 'Boston pork butt' a 'pork shoulder' and a 'pork picnic'?

    I had plans for a picnic, but the Mrs. came back with a pork shoulder...the butcher said it was better for pulled pork.  I'm sure it will be delishus I do anything different?

  15. reasoning

    reasoning Smoke Blower

    I would like to know the difference also gadsden.... Can anyone explain the difference?
  16. The Picnic is the lower portion of the front leg & the Butt is the upper section.

  17. reasoning

    reasoning Smoke Blower

    So what is best for pulled pork? Picnic or butt?
  18. The Butt has a higher fat to meat ratio. The Picnic has leaner meat & a stronger flavor but usually has to be taken to a slightly higher temp to break down the connective tissue. I have done pulled pork with both & they are both great. A Butt will usually get done faster than a picnic.

    Here is a Butt

    & here is a Picnic

    If you cook both & mix the meat together you have the best of both worlds  [​IMG]
  19. spiketus54

    spiketus54 Newbie

    Butt gets my vote for pulled pork. Can't beat the fat-meat ratio! Saw people discussing wrapping it... I tend to wrap mine when the meat hits the 155-165 range. I use a spicy rub to start and then when I wrap is when I coat the outside in brown sugar. You get the spice of the rub and the sweet of a nice caramalized brown sugar coating, and of course a great smoke ring if you wait til 155-165 int. temp. to wrap that sucker.
  20. When smoking a pork butt, fat cap Down? or fat cap up?

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