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Adjustable Rig - Dry Boston Butt

Hello forum! I have been a long time lurker and have enjoyed the tips, tricks and recipes posted here on the forum. I have cooked a few Boston Butts on my Large AR setup (R&B package) and noticed that each time, the pork has been a little dry on the non fat cap side. I have tried cooking with fat cap up and down and end up with the same results each time. My setup is oval stone at 1.5, aluminum serving tray filled with Apple juice sitting on stone and oval grid at 4.5. I try to maintain 225-250 dome temperature. I don’t open the lid unless the fire needs to be stoked. I pull the meat when the Maverick reads 195. I probe a few locations with the Thermapen to confirm 195 - 205 reading. I WTC the pork and let it sit until ready to serve (sat for 6 hrs yesterday).  Just wondering if its my technique or perhaps the oval deflector that is causing the pork to dry out.  I have a spider and tempted to get a 13" stone to see if that helps. I'd appreciate any tips or feedback from other AR owners.



 


Comments

  • buzd504buzd504 Posts: 826

    I would lose the tray of apple juice, or at least raise it off the stone, although that's not necessarily your problem.

    And you shouldn't have to stoke your fire.

    I usually run butts (did one yesterday) at 275-300 dome - they cook the same, but faster.  And I don't FTC.  Once it hits 195, I start probing, but I usually don't take it off until it's mostly at 200.  I let cool about 20 minutes, then pull.  I like to pull when it comes off rather than waiting.

    And how much rub are you using on the non-fat cap side? 
    NOLA
  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,167
    buzd504 said:

    I would lose the tray of apple juice, or at least raise it off the stone, although that's not necessarily your problem.

    And you shouldn't have to stoke your fire.

    I usually run butts (did one yesterday) at 275-300 dome - they cook the same, but faster.  And I don't FTC.  Once it hits 195, I start probing, but I usually don't take it off until it's mostly at 200.  I let cool about 20 minutes, then pull.  I like to pull when it comes off rather than waiting.

    And how much rub are you using on the non-fat cap side? 
    He will have to stoke the fire with a pan of liquid in there.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

  • Mattman3969Mattman3969 Posts: 2,784
    How does the pork pull?? Was there any resistance when you slid the Thermopen in to check temp?? It should feel like hot butter when checking for done.

    -----------------------------------------


    Large BGE. Small BGE Henderson, Ky. Waitin to find a Sasquatch to Egg.
  • sumoconnellsumoconnell Posts: 819
    +1 IMO, dry and hard to pull usually means underdone... mushy is overdone.  The bone should wiggle free with your hand, no need to cut it out.  Good luck!
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Austin, Texas.  I'm the guy holding a beer.
  • StinkyPeteStinkyPete Posts: 4
    The bone slid out and meat pulled with no resistance. Other than the dry spots on the thinner side of the cut, the inside was moist. I would say that around 1/4 inch under the bark was dry. 

    I am also liberal with rub. I lay it on liberally at first, plastic wrap and set aside in the fridge. I take it out prior to starting the fire and sprinkle some more rub right before throwing in the egg. Since my previous attempts were dry, I thought that adding juice/water would help with moisture. Sounds like it's not really helping with anything besides making the charcoal burn faster. I'll be sure to keep it out next time.
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  • Mattman3969Mattman3969 Posts: 2,784
    I am not a foil kinda guy but you will get a softer, more juicy bark if you double wrap it at about 160* IT. I like my bark to have a little crunch to it.

    -----------------------------------------


    Large BGE. Small BGE Henderson, Ky. Waitin to find a Sasquatch to Egg.
  • StinkyPeteStinkyPete Posts: 4
    I remove from egg and foil after IT reaches 195-200. I have always questioned the logic on foiling after hitting the target temperature. I usually foil to keep the meat hot. If I hit 200 at noon and expect ppl over until 4, should I pull at an earlier temp and allow it to continue cooking in the foil? 


  • sumoconnellsumoconnell Posts: 819
    hmm.  Sounds like you have a good cook plan.  I wonder if you've tried a turbo butt?  I don't know if that would change things for you or not.

    For me, I pull & serve the butt immediately after it's off the egg, no need to FTC unless I'm keeping it hot for mealtime.

    Sorry, I can't help it..... "You really are Stinky Pete!"  I like your handle.. you need a better avatar.
    image
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Austin, Texas.  I'm the guy holding a beer.
  • Mattman3969Mattman3969 Posts: 2,784
    My thought on the foil at 160 internal temp is that you should have a good but soft bark at this point if you then wrap it and put back on the egg it will steam the bark rather than drying it out, plus it will speed up the cook some. I may be wrong with my line of thinking, it's happened before.

    -----------------------------------------


    Large BGE. Small BGE Henderson, Ky. Waitin to find a Sasquatch to Egg.
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,147
    If you're eating within an hour or two of your butt finishing, don't foil.  Just let it cool.
    ______________________________________________
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    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • grege345grege345 Posts: 1,570
    Perhaps it's just an opinion of dry? I have cooked butt just like you several times. I always think its pretty good. Swmbo has said a few times that it needs to be juicier. I put a sweet and sour coleslaw on top of mine and I love it. She does not. Butt is relatively cheap so experiment with it. Try injecting it and foiling at 160. Try just wrapping it at 160 and letting it ride. You'll find what your looking for. Keep at it and good luck.
    LBGE& SBGE———————————————•———————– Pennsylvania / poconos
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,147
    You cook any meat up around the 200's and it's gonna be dry.  It should have enough fat and gelatin to "seem" moist.  If it doesn't, eat it with sauce.

    The only way to break down all that tough collagen is to use a sous vide technique.  Sadly, that gives you the opposite problem, too much fat.  And this is off topic, sorry.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • henapplehenapple Posts: 11,064
    I cooked 4 5 lb butts a few weeks ago...one read 200 and felt ready but had a spot that wouldn't pull. I had to chop it. The other 3 we're spot on. Could just be the meat.. try foiling at 160 and when done pour the captured juice over it. "That shit is juicy as hell" from a UTC athlete was my best compliment...he was comparing it to a restaurant bought pan. Try different methods toll you find your way.
    Green egg, dead animal and alcohol. The "Boro".. TN 
  • tjvtjv Posts: 3,242
    Did you let it sit in a cooler for six hous. If so, that is too long. As the meat cools down it will stiffen which can be mistaken for dry. T
    www.ceramicgrillstore.com
    ACGP, Inc.
  • danv23danv23 Posts: 399
    Hello forum! I have been a long time lurker and have enjoyed the tips, tricks and recipes posted here on the forum. I have cooked a few Boston Butts on my Large AR setup (R&B package) and noticed that each time, the pork has been a little dry on the non fat cap side. I have tried cooking with fat cap up and down and end up with the same results each time. My setup is oval stone at 1.5, aluminum serving tray filled with Apple juice sitting on stone and oval grid at 4.5. I try to maintain 225-250 dome temperature. I don’t open the lid unless the fire needs to be stoked. I pull the meat when the Maverick reads 195. I probe a few locations with the Thermapen to confirm 195 - 205 reading. I WTC the pork and let it sit until ready to serve (sat for 6 hrs yesterday).  Just wondering if its my technique or perhaps the oval deflector that is causing the pork to dry out.  I have a spider and tempted to get a 13" stone to see if that helps. I'd appreciate any tips or feedback from other AR owners.



     


    Let it rest at least 30-45 min

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  • If you want to maintain the bark but keep from drying out try butcher. This past week I sprayed occasionally with apple cider vinegar with great results. If you don't mind softer bark foil at about the stall 160-170 to finish. Keep making small adjustments. You'll find a way that works for you, your egg and your setup. Good reason for another cook! :)
  • StinkyPeteStinkyPete Posts: 4
    Thanks everyone for your advice. The meat was probably got hard after sitting wrapped for so long. Next time I smoke a butt, I wont add the water pan and pull after an hour.  I will be back to post my results.
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