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ButchB 06-17-2013 08:32 AM

4lb butt for 10 hrs?
I figured i'd share this and see if anybody has any ideas on why it may have taken these so long to cook. I cooked 2 butts, each 4 lb bone in butts the other day. One was in my BWS party, the other was in my UDS. I was doing a side by side comparison. Ran both @ 225 and both held steady temp the entire time. Had temp probes in each butt and also verified temps with thermapen. Put them on @ 3:00pm. Wrapped them both @ 165 internal @ 11:00pm, pulled both off smoker and put them in oven @ 350 (by this point I just wanted them to finish so I could go to bed). Finally @ 1:00am they hit 195 and I shut the oven down and let them rest til 5:00am. They both tasted fine i've just never had butts take that long. Normally @ 225 they take about an hour and a half a pound.

SmokinJohn 06-17-2013 08:47 AM

That's the mystery of the butt. Sometimes it's 90 minutes per pound, and sometimes it's longer. It depends on the fat/muscle mix and distribution.

Of course, it could have been your Thermapen. Did you have a GREEN one?

Bludawg 06-17-2013 09:32 AM

Stop cooking a 225!! I fail to understand this practice. You can put out the same product in less time there is no stall at 300, come on in the smoke is great. 225 on the door aint 225 on the grate

93vpmod 06-17-2013 09:48 AM

The watched always seems worse when you are tired or trying to coordinate a set meal time.

I had a similar cook yesterday with an 8 lb and 6 lb butt. I got a late start and wanted to go to bed, but the temps just didn't cooperate. Finally, after 10 hours at 275-300 I got where I needed to be. The funny thing, the 6 lb was at the same temp as the 8lb when I finally pulled them both to rest.

kujay 06-17-2013 10:06 AM

I ran a four-pound butt on Saturday at 300, three hours, foiled for one and it was at 201.

That said, I shouldn't have foiled it and would tone down the temp a bit next time because I felt like it got no smoke into it.

But yeah 225 is too low.

Ole Man Dan 06-17-2013 10:12 AM

That's an excessive time for a small piece of meat.

BUT... I too smoke em between 275 and 300.

I tend to the meat about the same time I add a split. (about once an hr.)

Ron_L 06-17-2013 11:00 AM

I've found that small cuts like that seem to take longer per pound than larger ones. That still seems long, but two hours per pound at 225 isn't out of line.

NickTheGreat 06-17-2013 11:39 AM


Originally Posted by Ron_L (Post 2518971)
I've found that small cuts like that seem to take longer per pound than larger ones. That still seems long, but two hours per pound at 225 isn't out of line.

Same here. I don't know, but I'm guessing it has something to do with surface area and the thickness of the cut? :wacko:

fnbish 06-17-2013 12:28 PM

I say run another similar cook test and see if you get the same results. I had the opposite happen at a competition where I put in 2 9lb butts at night 10:30pm and when I woke up at 5am about 6.5hrs later they were already at 190 when normally they are around 160. This is also cooking at 225.

El Ropo 06-17-2013 12:53 PM

225 isn't out of line, but wondering why it takes so long to cook things at that temp is slightly out of line lol. I cooked a 5.5 lb butt in 7 hours on my OTS using the ring of fire method last week. Rested for 2 hours, pulled and it was awesome. No foil, no spritz/mop, no peeking. Flipped it once in middle of cook.

I cooked at 280-320ish the whole time, and the smoke flavor and smoke ring was wonderful. I always put my meat on cold so it has more time in the cooker before "done". I don't see a reason to lower temps to get more smoke flavor on the meat.

I never checked the temp of that butt, just waited till I saw the bone extending before testing for probe tender. My guess is it was in the 205 area when I pulled it.

Bludawg is right with his rules for success. Especially with pork butts, there is no reason to warm them to death. The fat renders better with higher temps, and the stall is almost non existent.

SmokeDiddy 06-17-2013 08:25 PM

I have had very good success cooking butts at 250-275. Plus I foil after 3-4 hours and that seems to speed up the process to get to desired temp. I haven't had any issues with the stall using this method. You will definitely stall @ 225. The other thing about foiling during the later stages of the cook is you can bump up the heat a little without burning the meat and you can have "some" control on having the meat ready on-time.

oldbill 06-18-2013 12:03 AM

The thing about butts and really any of the larger cuts of meat is that they really are a crapshoot as to how long they'll take. Usually you can plan a certain length of time for it to get done but sometimes there is that little curve ball that it throws at you, (Fat Content)! The stall is caused by rendering fat releasing moisture which comes to the surface of the meat and acts like perspiration. Just like when we sweat and cool ourselves on a hot day the cooling effect of the moisture on the meat keeps the internal temp of the meat from rising, thus "the stall" and the higher the fat content of the meat, the longer the stall will be. So we try and power through the stall by ramping up the heat or by wrapping with foil or paper or both. I like to start a cook low and slow between 225 and 250 to get a good smoke on the meat, after about three hours the meat has taken in about as much smoke as it will take and then I'm going for color. When the color is sufficient I'll go ahead and wrap in paper and jack the heat to 275 which is really in between slow and fast but when combined with the wrap the moisture being released from the meat isn't allowed to evaporate and cause the stall. I usually cut several hours off of the cook this way and I have a very tender piece of meat when it's done because much of it's juices are retained instead of being lost to evaporation.

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