Choice of sugar for shoulder rub

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by ron eb, Jun 11, 2014.

  1. ron eb

    ron eb Meat Mopper

    Does anyone use turbinado sugar? Got some today at the store instead of brown sugar.

    Thought I would give it a try due to my final product turning black.
  2. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Yep, like the raw sugar but any sugar will burn if left on to long or with to high a heat.....Willie
  3. ron eb

    ron eb Meat Mopper

    My rub calls for a cup of sugar but I was thinking of cutting it to a half a cup of turbinado.

    When I do the texas crunch I can introduce the other portion of the sugar along with some butter.
  4. edward36

    edward36 Meat Mopper

    Hey Ron,

    Some theory... Unless you are completely sure you're buying a natural brown sugar, do take into a consideration that brown sugar is often made by adding molasses to a fully refined white sugar. It's done to have a more precise control over how much molasses there is in the brown sugar. However, the turbinado sugar (often called demerara) is a crystallized raw sugar cane juice, i.e. the really natural brown sugar. It's also much drier and to my taste - much better for rubs.

    Enjoy :).

  5. edward36

    edward36 Meat Mopper

    Oh, and I would not cut that amount... You do want that caramelizing that the sugar gives you. 


    Last edited: Jun 11, 2014
  6. ron eb

    ron eb Meat Mopper

    you think I should just replace all the rub sugar with turbinado?

    I love bark. I'm trying to minimize dark. I think I have been over smoking.

    Going for the TBS this time. I have good temp control. Using apple wood and chunk charcoal.
  7. edward36

    edward36 Meat Mopper

    To prevent it from oversmoking, you need to cut down on the wood chunks.

    And yeah, I do think you need to replace all the rub sugar with turbinado.

    By the way, apple is a very gentle smoke, so I don't think you'll be oversmoking it.

  8. bworthy

    bworthy Smoke Blower

    I was thinking of using turbinado instead of brown sugar on my next batch of rub. Going to make Jeff's Rub, do you use equal amount of turbinado as brown sugar?
  9. ron eb

    ron eb Meat Mopper

    I'm using the Big Bald rub out of Jeff's book.

    This is my first attempt at using turbinado instead of BS.

    Yes I think I'm going to use equal amount.

    I'm trying to get a mahogany type color. My stuff has been almost coming

    out black. It could be the brown sugar has something to do with it.

    Is Jeff's rub good?
  10. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I was brought up in a cane field by the sugar mill. I like raw sugar, I use it daily in my coffee. I don't know all the fancy names for it but..... there are like 7 different process available to change cane juice to sugar. Each basically involves the chemicals. I find raw sugar although unreliable in strength, for the most part to be of a lower sweetening ability than refined sugar. Which I like. So I would not reduce the quantity used without a taste test for sure.

    BTW I have asked forever and no one, even industry professionals, can tell me why raw sugar costs twice as much as refined sugar when its a pre-stage to the refined? LOL.... course nearly all my sugar is free, I take a shovel to the mill's whse. and load Ziplocs.....LOL

    Of course it behooves me to always shake it thru a screen. See there are rats all over that whse. and those ain't goobers in that sugar....LOL 

    Light brown sugar is supposed to have vanilla added and dark brown sugar molasses. HUGE difference when making pecan pies!
  11. edward36

    edward36 Meat Mopper

    Ron, try changing a wood. The best mahogany I got was when I smoked on cherry chunks. I believe that the type of the sugar used has very little to do with the almost black color... But may be more experienced smokers here will disagree... 

  12. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Sugar does caramelize, but normally I agree. Try less smoke or a different wood. If you are happy with your smoke taste, the color is fine. Color is only appearance. You get darker meats from heavier smokes like hickory, mesquite, possibly oak and some say pecan (although I think they are just silly about pecan). LOL. Some might also ask about your ventilation thru your smoker. But not me.

    Try mixing it up with your smokes and see what happens, I am guessing that Edward is spot on about your black color.
  13. bworthy

    bworthy Smoke Blower

    I haven't used Jeff's Rub, this will be my first shot at it. Going to use it for the first butt I'm doing Saturday. More to follow on that later!
  14. ron eb

    ron eb Meat Mopper

    Butts have a long cook time but your going for temp not time.

    I have done a few butts over the past year. I'm trying tweak things

    to get my Q to the next level. I'll be watching for your posts.

    I'll post to this thread as well along with some Q views.

    I'm hoping to put the meat to the heat real early an Saturday.

    This site is the place to be. A lot of knowledge here.
  15. I switched to using turbinado and love it!
  16. bworthy

    bworthy Smoke Blower

    Definitely going at it all day Saturday. The butt will go on early, then I'll reheat it for Fathers Day.
  17. ron eb

    ron eb Meat Mopper

    What do you like about it over Brown Sugar?
  18. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    Turbinado sugar does not burn as easy as brown sugar
    I use turbinado instead of brown sugar in rubs. The only thing I still use brown sugar for is beans
    Jeff's rub is great and is about all I use.
  19. blacklab

    blacklab Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Never used turbinado always dark brown sugar

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