View Full Version : 12-hr brine butt test cook results

08-29-2011, 02:00 PM
Posted a couple weeks asking for advice about about brining in competition where I will only have about a 12-14 hour window for the pork to soak. I got varying responses, from "you are wasting your time", to "we always brine and highly recommend."

Ordered some Kosmos Q Pork Soak and dropped in 2 butts for 12 hours prior to a test cook this weekend. They turned out great, but I don't know that I saw any identifiable increase in moisture. Minor change in flavor profile in my bark. They were good, but I can't say I really endorse it with that small of a brining window.

I've tried injecting before - same thing, no real appreciable difference in the end product, but I was just using recipes I found online... maybe I will order a commercial injection to try.

I promised to post my results, so there they are... thanks again to everyone who gave input.

Capn Kev
08-29-2011, 08:05 PM
I have never brined a pork butt. I use the freshest pork available. I do not use any pork that has the sodium nitrate pumped "solution" added. However, on the Friday of a competition, I inject a mixture that contains salts, sugars, juices, flavorings, etc. which I'm sure acts as a "brine". I inject about 6-8 hours before the meat goes on the cooker. I've had decent success in the Pork category this year. I honestly don't think you'll be able to have enough time for the brining process to work it's magic in a competition if you're trying to do it by soaking it in the solution. The meat is just too big. Hence the reason that most of us inject.

08-29-2011, 08:22 PM
I also have done the dance of brining, injecting, not injection/not brining. Many times doing direct comparisons on 2 butts and I, like many, cannot tell any semi-noticeable difference. We didn't inject this last weekend and had 2nd place pork in backyard. Now others say they can tell a difference and I do believe them, but it is just I can't and don't think it adds enough to help us. Maybe my opinion will change, but for now we will spend the extra effort where I know it can make a difference like getting good quality meat and focusing on cooking it as perfect as I can and also making the appearance nice.

08-30-2011, 10:03 AM
I know it's a little late here, but inject is the way imho. When I inject butts or shoulders, they jiggle like jello with so much liquid pumped into. Try Chris Lilly's as a starter and try to go where you like in the flavor profile. I use fruit juices spiked with seasonings. Works for me. Good luck and remember comp cooking is for 1 or 2 bites, not a plate full. Steve.