Thoughts on my smoked butt process

Discussion in 'Pork' started by nipster, Mar 16, 2008.

  1. nipster

    nipster Newbie

    I have been smoking pork and chickens for about 12 years, and for the most part I have done it the exact same way. I would like to get your thoughts on my process

    equipment: char-broil cylindrical vertical water smoker similiar to this one ( although its about 5 years old. I am kind of partial to this type of design, a-la the old "mr meat smoker"

    heat production: royal oak lump charcoal (if I cant find that, I try to find any lump charcoal or char wood, I try to never use briquettes) + hickory chunks and chips (I do not soak the hickory)

    meat: 8-10 pound bone-in pork butt.


    1. I have the butcher cut the pork butt into 4 pieces as close to the same size as possible. Depending on the cut of meat, you usually end up with 2 pieces with no bone and 2 with bone

    2. After I get the meat home, I wash it with mild-cool water and put each of the 4 pieces in its own gallon ziplock bag

    3. I fill each ziplock bag with 8 oz of italian dressing, remove as much of the air as possible, seal it and put it in the fridge for at least 3 days. Turning once daily

    4. On cooking day, at first light, I remove the meat from the fridge and let it aclimate to room temperature

    5. I light the fire in the smoker at least 30 minutes prior to putting the meat on. I only put on the charcoal/charwood at this point

    6. I heat to a boil about 2 gallons of tap water

    7. After the smoker is at the temperature I want it, I put the water pan in the smoker, and fill it with boiling water (this is tricky)

    8. I then put on the hickory chunks and chips

    9. I put on the meat, trying to leave a good ammount of space between the hunks of pork

    10. I keep the temperature above 200, and under 250, I add more hickory as needed. I visually make sure the smoker is producing a large ammount of smoke. Adding more as needed.

    11. I flip the meat 180 every 2 hours, at this time, I re-baste the meat using the same italian dressing I marinated it in.

    12. I add more charcoal every 3 or so hours, or as needed.

    I let the pork cook between 8 and 10 hours. Always produces superior taste, leaves the meat moist (throughout), and is VERY tender, but not to the point of pulled pork.

    I have made very little to the process over the years because it works so good. Every once in a while, use different type of wood, like mesquite or orange or oak. I do not use rubs, by marinating the meat for a couple days, it does the job, and re-basting it keeps the exposed areas moist

    A couple people I know chastise me by quarteting the butt, they say you should keep it whole, but in my opinion, unless you have 15-20 hours, cooking an 8 pound butt whole, it does not give you as good of a taste which I can get in 8 hours

    If I have the money, I also try to do the same process (sans quartering) on a loin roast or tenderloin, great stuff, but pricy
  2. ron50

    ron50 Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hey if it works, then keep doing the same thing. Don't know why a 2 - 2/12 pound piece of pork but would take 8 hours though?

    I usually do a 8 lb butt bone in, leave it whole and it takes me about 12 hours or so at 225 degrees.
  3. capt dan

    capt dan Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I gotta agree with Ron, most 6-8 lb butts take about 9-12 hrs at 225-240. I also agree with"if it works, no sense in changin" unless of course you are curious![​IMG]

    Sounds like ya got a smoker that is pretty popular with many folks on this site.Perhaps they will chime in and offer some thoughts on your process.

    What you are really cooking are "country style ribs" double sized ones! There are tons of recipes for them, or pork butts(pulled pork).

    I would love to see a Q-view of your finished pork!

    Here is a pic of my latest "country rib cook"!

    all rubbed up the night before, an tossed on the Charbroil horizontal.

    Took 8-9 hrs for these to finish, plus an hour resting in foil/cooler.
  4. bbq bubba

    bbq bubba Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    To each his own, i would think after 3 days of marinating in italian, dang thing is already half cooked!
  5. gooose53

    gooose53 Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I've got one just like yours and have made all the mods found on this forum. I found the stock temp gage is about 60 degrees off!! Obviously don't use that any more. I wouldn't reuse any marinating sauce ever unless I boil it! If you like your results stick with em, or try some of the suggestions you will get from some of the folks here.

Share This Page