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So about these butts...

Discussion in 'Pork' started by dburne, Nov 10, 2013.

  1. dburne

    dburne Meat Mopper

    Hey gang,

    Yesterday I did my first boston butt for pulled pork, and was extremely pleased with the outcome. What a wonderful dinner last night, the wife went nuts over it. My daughter and her husband came over to try some, and they could not get enough.

    Now I have a dumb question I am sure. I did a lot of reading and asking questions  here on the forums prior to attempting this, which is why it turned out so good - thanks to all the helpful folks here!

    So I read to figure around 1.5-2 hours per lb on a butt, so say a 10lb would take somewhere around 15-20 hours app. I picked up a 10 lb butt, however the night before I deboned it, and halved it ( butterflied).  This way, smoke time would be way less.

    I cooked the halves yesterday to an IT of 205F. Total smoke time was around 8.5 hours. One half was done at just under 8 hours, the other half 8.5 hours. I smoked them at 240F.

    So my dumb question : Why do folks do whole butts and take all that amount of time and use all of that fuel? That certainly seems to be the preference by most folks. I see where folks will stay up all night in some cases smoking a butt.  I noticed the store here I get my meat from, also offers the butts in halves -  already deboned - thinking next time I just will get couple of those and make it even easier.

    Just curious, thanks.
  2. timberjet

    timberjet Master of the Pit

    Low and slow wins the race. More smoke, more flavor. I prefer bone in myself as I believe it imparts moisture and even more flavor to the pulled pork. Just my 2 cents worth. Other consideration is bark formation which adds another dimension of flavor as well. By the way......

    Last edited: Nov 10, 2013
  3. timberjet

    timberjet Master of the Pit

    my bad, I saw your other thread with the pics. looks great.
  4. bdskelly

    bdskelly Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Great question… I go low and slow.  I put my butt on at 7pm last night at 8am this morning the IT is 165 and I just wrapped it.  Expecting to eat around 3pm today. (See Texas Boston Butt Thread) But dinner might be 1pm or 2pm or 4 or 5 pm before the IT hits 200. Who knows?  Thats the fun of it.   I seldom cook as high temp  as you. Usually 220 - 225  Higher for turkey. 

    I believe that cooking for longer times adds flavor ...and especially for meats to be pulled like a butt the longer periods of cooking help break down collegians better for a great texture. 

    Another very good reason is This method of cooking should be relaxing. You're more likely to need a more watchful eye on your meat cooking at those higher temps.

    As for the savings of fuel… You burn a little for a longer period of time or burn more for a shorter period of time.  Hmmm Have to think about that savings if there is one versus the thought of me getting off the couch more often while watch the college games with my son.  

    Hope that helps!   

  5. dburne

    dburne Meat Mopper

    Thanks, I have to say even before pouring JJ's finishing sauce in after the pull, the meat was very juicy - it pulled very easy - and that bark was awesome.
  6. dburne

    dburne Meat Mopper

    Thanks for the input Brian - I do my spare ribs at 220 but had read 240 was a good temp for a butt so decided to go with that.

    I am sure you are right about the flavor and better texture though.  Though when I am faced with either a marathon (whole), versus say 8-10 hours tops, well guess I get a little lazy lol...

    Monitoring - best thing I have got so far is one of those Maverick ET732 wireless thermometers, kept an eye on both my cook chamber temp and internal meat temp here in the house with me. Actually turned out fairly relaxing once I got the temp where I wanted it.

    Thanks for the feedback,
  7. smokeusum

    smokeusum Smoking Fanatic

    FLAVOR! I can get twice the butt at costco already deboned (and two came in a pack) - and that's all I'd smoke for quite a while. Then I jumped and started doing bone-in. I got roughly the same amount of (useable) meat, a more even meat temp throughout, takes about the same time and twice the flavor.

    I don't use any more fuel, I fight less with overall meat temps, and super thrilled with the flavor. I've hard a hard time finding a steady supply if bone-in until recently... I have to admit I was horrified to hear you'd de-boned one! But in the end, if it's good, who cares, right!
  8. dburne

    dburne Meat Mopper

    Well to cut it in half I had to debone it - did not have a hack saw handy.

    Ok so now I am a little confused, you are saying you can smoke a whole butt in the same amount of time as say a couple of halves?? Wait I guess you were getting two whole ones deboned from Costco?

    I figure if I had of left mine whole would have taken a lot longer than 8.5  hours for a 10 lb butt.