pork shoulder in oven...cooking too quickly

Discussion in 'Pork' started by kelsosmokes, Dec 24, 2014.

  1. kelsosmokes

    kelsosmokes Newbie

    I'm following a recipe that calls for cooking an 8lb pork shoulder for 5-6 hrs at 300 until the temp hits 145 (for slicing, not pulling).

    Trouble is, my shoulder has spiked its temp to 150 after only 2.5 hours. Trying to decide now whether to keep it going and bring temp of oven down to 200, or turn temp way up to char the outside.

    Any suggestions welcome!!!! Please help.
  2. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    It's hit the stall.... turn the oven down to 200 and let her go.... the outside will still "bark" ... I would take it to 190-195 for slicing.. that way it will be tender...
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2014
  3. timberjet

    timberjet Master of the Pit

    Oven? Pork shoulder? 145? Hmmmm.... are you sure this recipe was not for a loin?
  4. If the bone is still in, I'd remove and replace the thermometer. You may be hitting bone and that's why it's spiked. Regarding temps, if you're looking to slice, I'd take it to 190 then pull and let rest for 30 minutes before slicing.
  5. noboundaries

    noboundaries Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    +1.  145F IT for a shoulder is WAY too low.  It will taste dry and tough because none of the connective tissue will have melted.  At 190-195 IT will be juicy and slice beautifully.  That will put you back on the 5-6 hour track at an oven temp of 300F.  Meat ITs will climb fast for the first 100-110 degrees, then slow to a crawl.  It can take hours for the last 30-40 degrees. 
  6. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    That recipe is suspect, as I know for a fact that an 8 lb shoulder at 300 degrees will hit 195-203 in almost exactly 6 hours. 😄
    As Dave said, turn your oven down as far as it will go (mine will go to 170f which in my opinion would be perfect for sliced butt) and let it ride.
    Another thing to consider is that at 145f the connective tissue in a pork butt will just have barely begun to break down, so your meat will be really tough and chewy unless you were to hold it at that temp for many hours. (Sous vide). I'd suggest leaving it in at lowered heat until the temp starts to climb again, which should indicate that the connective tissue has broken down to the point that evaporative cooling has slowed. You'll probably be around 170ish at that point and you should be fine for slicing. Just check to make sure. Most folks actually go to 185-190 for slicing, but For me, that the meat is almost too tender at that point.

    Edit: Noboundaries beat me to the punch!
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2014
  7. kelsosmokes

    kelsosmokes Newbie

    OP here. Many thanks to all for the very helpful advice. Ended up taking it to 170 and slicing. was fine for the evening meal and everyone was happy (except for me, of course). So, I took the left overs and beer braised it in a le cruset for hours the next day, until it broke down into delicious carnitas. Its rare the leftovers are better than the original, but these were!!

    Thanks again everyone.


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