Pork butts

Discussion in 'Pork' started by missed-em, Dec 11, 2011.

  1. missed-em

    missed-em Smoke Blower

    OK, we're new to this, done a couple of things with the MES40 but tomorow we want to get serious.

    We want to smoke two pork butts, each about 7.5 lbs.  Will start about 7 am, temp outside will be  25-28 degrees, but smoker will be protected by a shed.  Pretty much we are following MEOWEY's sticky but still a few questions -- Do I put the 2 butts one above the other on the racks, or in foil pans? If on the racks do we collect the juices in a pan below, or wait till the foiling stage and just collect whats in the foil?  At 1.5 hrs per pound do I count total poundage or for a single butt (i.e 10 hrs, or 20 +)?
  2. redheelerdog

    redheelerdog Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Do you have a meat thermometer or thermocouple you could insert in one or both? That is the best method, better than the hrs./per pound guesstimate.

    Can they fit side by side? If you go one on top the other with nothing in between, the juices from the upper will run on top of the lower one. I always guesstimate on the long time side of things so I go 2 hrs. per pound @ 225F but that's just me.

    I just smoked an 8lb shoulder for 20hrs and it came out perfect! http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/114398/pork-shoulder

    Have fun, be patient and it will come out great!, and don't forget to post your Qview!

  3. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Don't count on the 1.5 hours per pound.  That is just an estimate and mine usually take longer.

    Side by side?  Up or down?  Doesn't matter as long as they aren't touching each other.

    Smoke to internal temp on these, not time.

    Also, use a separate probe for pit temp.  If your pit temps are right, one or two butts will cook about the same.

    In those ambient temps, you will use more fuel.  If the pit temps are right, you will be fine.

    Good luck and good smoking.
  4. adiochiro3

    adiochiro3 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Venture is totally right on the time -- smoke to temps, not time.  They could take much longer than 1.5 hours per pound.  They're done when they're done.
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2011
  5. roller

    roller Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Yep temp. not time...
  6. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I usually guestimate 2 hours per pound, and that would include the rest period.
  7. missed-em

    missed-em Smoke Blower

    Thanks  I've got a probe that I use - side by side sounds good if they will fit -- Here we go!!!

  8. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member


    Now thats the first thing we tell you here. We smoke by temp not time. I'm glad that you have a thermo probe unit and you are ready to start smoking.
  9. missed-em

    missed-em Smoke Blower

    MES temp running a little low, found an old sleeping bag & wrapped it up.  Meat temp climbing.
  10. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Good luck Steve!
  11. redheelerdog

    redheelerdog Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Keep us updated and don't forget the pictures...

    I'm having pulled pork leftovers tonight!
  12. flash

    flash Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I'll be doing a 7 1/2 lb butt myself this week. 9 1/2 hours tops wrapping in foil at 170*.
  13. missed-em

    missed-em Smoke Blower

    Pulled from smoker at 190+ -- 10 hours, couln't wait!  Turned out real good, but a question -- on the one we pulled It seemed like 1/2 was "pullable" but the rest wasn't there yet.  I had the two butts on 2 shelves but staggered so one wasn't direstly below the other.  At 4 hours I rotated top to bottom but didn't turn them.  Why not an even cook?

  14. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    At 190*F Butts are good to slice...You need to get over 200*F with a rest to pull...The situation you experienced was because some of the meat got over 200 and was there long enough for connective tissue to breakdown and the rest at 190* was cooked but not enough breakdown...So there you go, you can't let hunger over ride your plan...JJ
  15. missed-em

    missed-em Smoke Blower

    Someone once said "patience Grasshoper"!

    Thanks for the help guys

  16. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  17. jmonty580

    jmonty580 Fire Starter

    yea 8 pound butt i would imagine would take longer than 10 hours. Last weekend I did 2 6 pounders that took 12 and 13 hours to get to 188.  I didnt plan properly so I pulled them, let them rest for about 20 minutes, and then foiled and toweled and tossed in a cooler while I handle some business for about 3 hours.  To my surprise they both shredded easily at that temp though and they were juicy. 

    Is it possible your internal temp was higher than you thought it was? Did you let the meat rest and foil and put in a cooler?
  18. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Every cut of meat will vary.

    My best luck has been at 200 to 205 with a nice resting period.

    Just one person's experience for what it is worth.

    Good luck and good smoking.
  19. missed-em

    missed-em Smoke Blower

    Thanks for the help guys - Sorry for no Qview but camera (and operator) tecnologically challenged!

    Daughter said the one she got pulled great & tasted great too - always like cudos!

    Next try is a brisket for Christmas dinner, wish me luck, pleeeease!


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