Pecan smoked pork butt on 9/7/2015 at farm

9/6/2015 at the farm. Smoking at 7:30 AM and took it off at 5:30 PM

Used the Great Smoky Mountain smoker starting out with Kingsford unlit around the sides of the fire pan with a hole in the middle. Dumped a half chimney of burning brickets in the hole. Put hot water in the pan and the meat on the rack two slots above the pan.  Maybe 20 minutes later added a small, short log of pecan. Within an hour a lot of coals were grey and that seem like a lot. Kept adding pecan to keep it burning and that worked fine.  Door thermometer and oven shelf thermometer both read the same with temp staying from 200 to 250. Lower vents set at abut 50% and missing upper vent was maybe 50% blocked with a scrap of sheet metal.

Great Bark but did not taste salty enough. Also did not pull apart like in restaurants.

The above was based on my memory the advice at What Meathead recommends and I should have done is:

  • “Trim most of the of fat from the exterior of the meat but not all of it. Leave no more than 1/8″ …  Most of the butts I cook are 4 to 6 pounds, pretty well trimmed, and tied with butcher’s twine to keep them from falling apart.”
  • “Rinse and thoroughly dry the meat. Salt it. If you have the time salt it 12 to 24 hours in advance.”   “1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt per pound of meat. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate overnight or for up to 2 days.”
  • Apply rub shorty before smoking. The rub will not penetrate, but the salt will. Just before cooking, wet the surface to help the rub dissolve and adhere. Some folks like to slather it with yellow mustard [instead of the water]. “
  • My roast did stall as he warns. “When the meat hits 150 to 160°F, moisture moves to the surface and starts evaporating and cooling the meat like sweat on a marathon runner. As a result, the meat temp will not rise for as long as 5 hours. It stalls at 150 to 160°F. And it significantly lengthens the cook and drives people nuts. But this process helps dry the exterior and form bark. ” I should have let it go longer and it would have pulled apart as it should have.
  • “The meat is at its maximum tenderness and juiciness when it hits 195 to 203°F (203°F is my target, but actual time and temp varies on the individual animal).”

The quotes in the bullets are taken from various pages by Meathead at

For his recipe for butt smoked for 2 hours then finished in the oven click here and scroll down the page to The Fast Method.

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