first chuckie, what went wrong !!

Discussion in 'Beef' started by fmcowboy, Dec 15, 2009.

  1. so after reading up here and many succesful smokes, I decided to try my first chuckie last Sunday. here's what I did.

    5lb chuckie, rubbed with evoo n a lil worsteshire, then coated with montreal steak seasoning. placed in fridge in ziploc overnight.

    fired up smoker in am. 230-240 degrees. smoked using hickory n cherry. foiled at 165 degrees. brought to 190 degrees. took 6.5 hrs. held at 190 until dinner. let rest 15 mins. sliced and ut oh.......

    was very dry and taste like kippered beef, that must be the seasonings. why so dry? i wont use that seasoning again. i like kippedred beef for jerky like jacks kippered beef sticks. but my chuckie????

    help lol
  2. I've seen a lot of people put a roasting pan with beef stock under the chuckie to catch the drippings, then put the pulled product in the pan with the stock and let it set in the smoker or oven at 190 until ready to eat. This may allow it to soak back up some moisture. Also, it may be too tough when sliced. It seems pulling it is pretty popular on this site. Haven't done one yet, so I can't say for sure what the problem is.
  3. scpatterson

    scpatterson Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Are you saying it took 6.5 hours to go from 165 to 190???

    Did it slice well?

    Have not a clue why it would be so dry
  4. bman62526

    bman62526 Smoking Fanatic

    I'm not an expert by any means, - but I've done enough to make a couple good guesses! [​IMG]

    First off, every chuckie that i've done between 3.5 - 4.75 lbs., smoking at 225 - 250, took me about 9 hours total cook time.

    ( 6.5 - 7.5 hours to 165, then foil)
    (another 1 hour in the foil up to 190 - 195ish)
    (one hour in the foil/old towel/cooler trick, before serving)

    Are you relying on your Little Big Chief original temp gauge, or do you have a Maverick, Taylor, etc...after-market, more accurate temp?

    It seems yours cooked real fast...I usually stall around 145-150° for at LEAST an hour, then it slowly climbs back up to 160 when I foil.

    Did you do the foil/cooler trick?

    The last thing would be, the montreal beef rub? Was it the salt-free variety?

    If not - that explains the taste...if you use a rub w/ salt and you only apply right before cooking - not as big of a deal. However, a rub with salt applied WAY in advance (in a marinade or not doesn't matter, same result) like overnight - will REALLY dry out the meat before you've even started cooking. It pulls the moisture out of the meat as the salt reacts to it...almost like you are curing it, but not quite the same I guess.

    Try to make your own simple rub (omit or use very little salt)
    also - IMHO when it comes to chuckies - skip the marinade.
    I have never marinated one and they are always super tender doing it the way I learned here.

    Then - make sure you are cooking in that 230-260 range, or whatever you prefer - just make sure you know the true temp you're cooking at, by using an after market temp. gauge.

    Then make sure and to the foil/towel/cooler trick and let it sit for an appropriate amount of time.

    With a 5 lb. chuckie (pretty good size) that should be about an hour in the cooler.

    Try again, mate! I have messed up plenty, but I'm starting to get good.

  5. yeah the seasoning had lots of salt. So I thought that coulda been it.

    I cookedi y on MES 40" SS.
  6. ronp

    ronp Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    What CU said. And I keep my rub simple, Youshidas, Garlic, and lemon pepper.

    Better luck next time.
  7. rickw

    rickw Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    The last chuckie we did was marinated. I doubt it would have been the marinade, could have been the seasoning though. If I use a store bought rub with salt I put it on rght before it hits the smoker.

    IMO I would bet you didn't bring the chuckie up to a high enough temp to really break down the connective tissue. I take chuckies up to 205°-210°. Next time take it a little higher.

    Also did you add liquid when you foiled?
  8. tlhiv

    tlhiv Smoke Blower

    I've only done a couple of chuckies, but I did them both the same way and had others really raving about the flavor and moistness. Here's basically what I did.

    Both times that I smoked my chuckie, I was smoking something else with it. I rubbed my chuckie like I would a brisket (using Jeff's Naked Rib Rub) and the chuckie got about 5 good hours of smoke each time. When my other meat finished, I pulled my chuckie from the smoker and finished it in a crock-pot submerged in a beef broth + worchestershire concoction. I cooked it on low in the crock-pot until it reached 195°F internal temperature. Once that temperature was achieved, I pulled the chuckie out, wrapped it in foil, and let it rest for about 30 minutes. I then sliced the chuckie just like I would a brisket, and then put the slices back into the beef broth + worchestershire concoction to bathe. I kept the crock-pot on warm while we helped ourselves to the sliced chuckie. This method gives plenty of good smoke to the chuckie while at the same time letting my chuckie bath liquid absorb some of that smoke and rub flavor. Having the meat and liquid served together was a heck of a combination.
  9. flash

    flash Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I agree with Rick and have been going to 205 to 210 on my Chucks. Which Chuck did you use? Remember there are 7 different types. Pick one with good marbling. I like the Underblades and 7 Bone Chucks. Double wrap in foil to trap your juices or place it in a aluminum foil pan.
    I like to marinade in Mojo. Most chucks I do run 5 to 6 hours to finish using around 250* temps.
  10. scubadoo97

    scubadoo97 Smoking Fanatic

    I agree with Rick and Flash. I find a chuck doesn't get really tender until you get past 200*. At that point the connective tissue has broken down and it becomes very suculent. I've had them stall for 3 or more hours before pushing past 170
  11. the dude abides

    the dude abides Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    It sounds almost exactly like how I do my chuckies. I guess my questions would be 1) What smoker were you working on? and 2) Did you have a water/moisture pan working?

    I've done many a chuck roughly the same size that have cooked that fast, that they're never dry. But I use a WSM and a full water pan. Sometimes I use a splash of liquid when I foil, sometimes not. Haven't noticed too much difference.

    What was the exact name of the cut of meat? Chuck Pot Roast? Chuck Tender Roast? There are a few different cuts that come under the "chuck" name. Some have more fat than others.
  12. mulepackin

    mulepackin Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Add me to the 205 deg. camp as well. Seems they gotta get there to get fall apart done. Moisture in the foil helps too. Otherwise they are a generally tough cut of beef.
  13. thanks for all the replies. I used an MES with water pan in place and water in it to catch drippings. not sure of chuck cut, but was like 3 sections barely held together by tissue. I did foil at 165 and added some beef broth. The meat was not tough, was tender but overcooked and dry in my opinion. thats why i think it was the moisture drawing , heavy salt seasoning overnight that drew out the moisture. I think the length of time darn near cured it hence the kippered beef ends. Next time, i'll go with my all purpose rub, applied for 45 mins before smoking. and see how that goes.


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