Boston Butt: To mop or not to mop that is the question

Discussion in 'Pork' started by kc chiefs fan, Mar 29, 2016.

  1. No, not at all

    0 vote(s)
  2. Yes, every 30 mins

    0 vote(s)
  3. Yes, every hour

    0 vote(s)
  4. Yes, but only last few hours

    0 vote(s)
  1. Since that wonderful season is back upon us here in the midwest I have a couple questions.  I've done my fair share of pulled pork and usually just mix up a rub consisting of the usual brown sugar, smoked paprika, salt, pepper, cumin, table sugar, cayenne, chili powder.... I then cook in a foil pan uncovered for the first 3-4 hours then cover the pan in foil and finish up to an IT of 165 degrees.  I've been looking at various recipes and I've found some mops that want you to mop meat every 30-45 mins.  Does this not let a lot of your heat out?  Also I've seen a lot of people cooking directly on rack, does this not dry the meat out?  I feel by keeping in pan it's able to cook in it's own juices and stay tender.  It always comes out great when I cook it but couldn't win a presentation award.  Is the pan hindering the bark and smoke ring?  I would love some input from anyone and everyone.  I've decided there's no such thing as a master just a lot of different great ways to do things and I want to learn as many as possible.
  2. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    If you only take the butt to 165, how do you pull it?

    I take mine to 205. The bone comes out clean & I pull it with my hands.

    Like you I always smoke my butts in a pan sitting in their own juices.

    I use that juice to baste the butt after about 12-14 hours.

    I also put the trimmed fat on a rack above the butt, so as it renders It bastes the butt.

    My butts take 20 hours+, and always have great bark.

    Last edited: Mar 29, 2016
    kc chiefs fan likes this.
  3. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    IMHO, you mope in a firebreather, you don't in an electric.

    Firebreathers are dry higher heat and need the mop. Electric or usually small self contained boxes, they never loose the moisture.

    I never use a pan not even for drippings. I don't use a water pan never have. I rub a butt and put it in the smoker and I am totally finished for 12 to 24 hours. I don't wrap. I let the butt smoke till its done. It ain't brain surgery.

    Even with my fire breather, I tend the fire and mop ever so often, but less and less. I know what the meat is doing, it doesn't need me looking at it.

    Different types of smokers will have different answers.
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2016
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  4. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I'm a no panner, no foiler, no mopper, high temp, dry smoke chamber, set it and forget it pork butt smoker. Great bark and juicy moist meat every time.

    As for rub I'm a no mustard or "binder" smoker too. The meat has enough moisture to hold the rub on. I use very little sugar in my rubs.

    I do like a good finishing sauce with pulled pork.
    kc chiefs fan likes this.
  5. We usually do a 10 pounder, it takes about 15 hours.  IT might actually be 185 my partner in crime usually handles the end games since I stay up all night fighting the fire in my old smoker.  Never had a problem pulling though bone always slides right out.
  6. I use a 30+ year old 375 gallon fuel oil tank that's been made into a smoker.  Not designed like anything I've seen on here lol.  It's as old or older than I am.  Had to put tin sheets in the bottom to plug the rust holes under the fire box the other day haha.

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