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Small BGE cooks (butts, ribs, brisket)

JekJek Posts: 35
About a year ago I got a small BGE because my folks weren't using it (the price was right).  Since then, I have been lurking on this site and learning as much as I can.  I did not grow up with charcoal and had very little experience.  This site and youtube have been valuable to speed my learning curve.  Thanks to all here who post cooks & tips.

With only 13" of grill grate, there are some challenging aspects to using a small.  I've had some successes and failures through the year.

Butts:  They have been the most forgiving.  My last two where peach butts (thanks @YukonRon).  I have gone from foil wrap to boat (mostly because I worried about mushy peach bark on the last two).  I think the boat will be my go-to from here on out.



Ribs:  Need to cut the rack to fit.  I have done 2 racks once with the wire rack from the airfryer to space them.  The last one I did was with peach preserves and was my best.



Beef ribs:  I tried these before brisket.  They turned out great.  Used sriracha as a binder.  Foiled both times and used coffee, red wine, and beef bullion as liquid.



Brisket:  I have done a flat and was satisfied but not impressed.  I tried a full but it is just too much for the small.  I folded the flat over to fit.  I had to cut when it started tightening up and straightening out.  From here on out, I will probably buy a full and separate the point from the flat and do two cooks.



Chuck roast:  Did the pepper stout pulled beef.  I thought it was excellent.  No pics.

First post.  Be kind.  Any spelling errors are inadvertent.

Jek

Small BGE // Wisconsin
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Comments

  • WeberWhoWeberWho Posts: 9,280
    Hell of a first post! That's fantastic and welcome!
    "The pig is an amazing animal. You feed a pig an apple and it makes bacon. Let's see Michael Phelps do that" - Jim Gaffigan

    Minnesota
  • StillH2OEggerStillH2OEgger Posts: 3,322
    That is some tremendous work, right there! I also had very little experience with charcoal (and that was only briquettes) before buying a BGE and this site put me on the right track from the start. Congrats on the great cooks and welcome aboard.
    Stillwater, MN
  • Langner91Langner91 Posts: 565
    It's gonna be tough to top that first post!  Nice cooks!  I am always amazed at what folks can fit on that little egg.  

    Really nice job!
    Clinton, Iowa
  • JekJek Posts: 35
    I bought a Kick Ash Basket and that has helped, but still can only get about 7 hrs before I need to add more lump.  That has been a great purchase though.  Prior to that it wasn't an issue with fuel, it was getting the air holes plugged.

    I did everything around 275-325F with good results on all.  Even the peach butt.  For me, this is the easiest temperature range to maintain for my egg and balances out the small fuel capacity reasonably well.

    Smoking wood started with chips and have progressed to Fruita.  Mostly post oak, pecan, and peach.

    I have tried Cowboy, B+B, and have a currently unopened bag of Rockwood.  Low ash is the key with a small...
    Small BGE // Wisconsin
  • Langner91Langner91 Posts: 565
    With my Mini-Max, I have resorted to raking the ash out with the ash tool, mid-cook.  I use a galvanized bucket and set it away from anything flammable until I know it has cooled off.
    Clinton, Iowa
  • Your food pictures are awesome!  I love what you have done.

    I have an XL and a small and am slowly learning how to cook on the small.  It doesn't seem to heat up as powerfully as the XL so some of my cooks actually take longer on the small than the XL such as a whole roasted chicken.  I use it on weekends when I can take the time to work with it.
    XL and Small BGEs in South Carolina
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 24,248
    @Jek - welcome aboard and continue to enjoy the journey.  Above all, have fun.
    Talk about an impressive collection of cooks, and maximizing the SBGE, you have hit it out of the park.  Way to experiment and sort out techniques.  He11 of an entrance and deservedly so!  Congrats.  
    Louisville; "indeterminate Jim" here.  Rolling smoke in the neighbourhood. # 38 for the win.  Life is too short for light/lite beer!
  • JekJek Posts: 35
    @lousubcap Fun is had, but not as frequently as I like.  I am doing another peach butt for tailgating this weekend.  Last two had no leftovers.  Getting it done and rested by end of game (11 am start) is going to mean an early morning.  I could do it the day before (I did that for the last one), but I think it is best fresh off the egg.

    @Bellavista52 I have done some turkey breasts and a spatchcock chicken and every time it has been disappointing.  Still have some work to do on poultry.  I did do some chicken thighs that turned out really good.  As far as difference in cook times, I'll have to take your word for it.  Maybe someday I'll get a bigger one to compare.

    One advantage of the small is portability.
    Small BGE // Wisconsin
  • JekJek Posts: 35
    I pretty much followed the peach preserve butt recipes on the forum.  I did add a couple of wrinkles though:  1) temperature of 275-300F, 2) smoke (peach) without the preserves for 3 hrs and then add the preserves to the top (I added preserves to the bottom on the first one at the beginning of the cook, but it was REALLY messy), and 3) foil boat at 5 hrs until the end.
    Small BGE // Wisconsin
  • Photo EggPhoto Egg Posts: 11,122
    Welcome!
    Great post and photos using your Small BGE. 
    Larger pieces of meat in a smaller egg will hold so much moisture that it’s tough to get crispy skin on things like spatchcock birds. You can dry brine and air dry in the fridge 24-36 hours. This is about the only thing that works for me in the small to dry out the skin. I also start skin side down til it renders some fat and gets some color on the skin. Then flip and let it ride to completion.
    See if you can find a brisket point end to cook. 
    Only other tip I have, all larger cuts I put on ice cold right out of the fridge. Gives more time to develop a crust and take in smoke.
    Your beef ribs look fantastic!

    Thank you,
    Darian

    Galveston Texas
  • dbCooperdbCooper Posts: 1,005
    Those are fine looking cooks, especially the beef ribs.  Nice!
    LBGE, LBGE-PTR, 22" Weber, Coleman 413G
    Great Plains, USA
  • JekJek Posts: 35
    Photo Egg said:
    Welcome!
    Great post and photos using your Small BGE. 
    Larger pieces of meat in a smaller egg will hold so much moisture that it’s tough to get crispy skin on things like spatchcock birds. You can dry brine and air dry in the fridge 24-36 hours. This is about the only thing that works for me in the small to dry out the skin. I also start skin side down til it renders some fat and gets some color on the skin. Then flip and let it ride to completion.
    See if you can find a brisket point end to cook. 
    Only other tip I have, all larger cuts I put on ice cold right out of the fridge. Gives more time to develop a crust and take in smoke.
    Your beef ribs look fantastic!

    Thanks for the tips.  I have done a small full packer that was mostly point.  I'll BOLO for one.
    Small BGE // Wisconsin
  • loco_engrloco_engr Posts: 4,934
    Great first post!
    Where are you located? Sorry, but I'm geographically curious . . .
    aka marysvilleksegghead, moved to Basehor,KS 2/26/2021
    Lrg 2008
    mini 2009
    XL 2021
    Henny Youngman:
    I said to my wife, 'Where do you want to go for our anniversary?' She said, 'I want to go somewhere I've never been before.' I said, 'Try the kitchen.'
    Bob Hope: When I wake up in the morning, I don’t feel anything until noon, and then it’s time for my nap
  • JekJek Posts: 35
    Wisconsin
    Small BGE // Wisconsin
  • shtgunal3shtgunal3 Posts: 4,789
    As others have said, great first post and welcome to the forum. I have a Large, Small, and Mini. The Small is by far the most used. Try a meatloaf sometime, same recipe as if cooking in the oven only use your egg indirect.

    ___________________________________

     

     LBGE,SBGE, and a Mini makes three......Sweet home Alabama........ Stay thirsty my friends .

  • Way to use the small.  It is definitely my favorite size Egg,  but admittedly I’ve not attempted anything large like some of your cooks on it.  You are killing it!
    XL BGE, Large BGE, Small BGE, Weber Summit NG                                                                                               
    Memphis  
  • saluki2007saluki2007 Posts: 5,563
    edited August 31
    Nicely done. I don’t utilize my small enough. When I do ribs in small I cut them in half and then stand them on their sides. Rotate half way through the cook. 


    Large and Small BGE
    Central, IL

  • loco_engrloco_engr Posts: 4,934
    Jek said:
    Wisconsin
    Please add to your sig line so we know where you're from. Thank You
    aka marysvilleksegghead, moved to Basehor,KS 2/26/2021
    Lrg 2008
    mini 2009
    XL 2021
    Henny Youngman:
    I said to my wife, 'Where do you want to go for our anniversary?' She said, 'I want to go somewhere I've never been before.' I said, 'Try the kitchen.'
    Bob Hope: When I wake up in the morning, I don’t feel anything until noon, and then it’s time for my nap
  • Photo EggPhoto Egg Posts: 11,122
    The best friend of my Small BGE is the WOO Ring.
    Allows for easy raised direct cooking, and makes it easy to add lump and chunks during a longer cook.
    https://ceramicgrillstore.com/collections/minimax-small-mini-big-green-accessories/products/small-woo-ring-bge
    Thank you,
    Darian

    Galveston Texas
  • JohnInCarolinaJohnInCarolina Posts: 20,831
    Welcome aboard!  Great start!
    "A generation of the unteachable is hanging upon us like a necklace of corpses." - George Orwell 

    "I've made a note never to piss you two off." - Stike

    Ruining the forum, one post at a time.  

    Living large in the 919
  • mEGG_My_DaymEGG_My_Day Posts: 1,630
    edited September 1
    Welcome aboard - great first post.  Regarding chicken - my experience is the higher in the dome you can get the bird the better.  There are lots of ways to do that.  @Photo Egg has provided a great solution above.  I have actually added a smokeware grate stacker on top of a CGS woo on my small.  (See pics above) You can get smaller things, like wings way up high.  


    Memphis, TN 

    LBGE, 2 SBGE, Hasty-Bake Gourmet
  • bluebird66bluebird66 Posts: 2,499
    Those are some great cooks!
    Large Egg with adjustable rig, Kick Ash Basket and various Weber's
    Floyd Va

  • JekJek Posts: 35
    Photo Egg said:
    The best friend of my Small BGE is the WOO Ring.
    Allows for easy raised direct cooking, and makes it easy to add lump and chunks during a longer cook.
    https://ceramicgrillstore.com/collections/minimax-small-mini-big-green-accessories/products/small-woo-ring-bge
    Unfortunately I read about this after I purchased the conveggtor.  Looks easier to remove to add lump.  Thanks for the tip.
    Small BGE // Wisconsin
  • six_eggsix_egg Posts: 1,110
    Nice cooks @Jek. Looks like you grasp concepts quickly. 

    XLBGE, LBGE 

    Fernandina Beach, FL

  • JekJek Posts: 35
    six_egg said:
    Nice cooks @Jek. Looks like you grasp concepts quickly. 
    Thanks.  Being an engineer doesn't hurt...wait, on second thought, it might.  Lots of potential for overthinking.

    I am self aware enough to not just buy a controller.  I wanted to figure out how it worked low-tech first.  Once I had it somewhat figured out, I decided to stay low-tech.  No judgement here, just my experience & bias as a control freak...
    Small BGE // Wisconsin
  • Agree, I have a Woo for the Small and it does exactly that for me as well.
    XL and Small BGEs in South Carolina
  • mEGG_My_DaymEGG_My_Day Posts: 1,630
    The Woo does something much more important than house a stone, it elevates the grid to the felt line giving you more distance from the coals for direct cooks.  I rarely grill direct on my small without the Woo.  
    Agree 100% - my woo is used on every cook unless I need to seer something. 
    Memphis, TN 

    LBGE, 2 SBGE, Hasty-Bake Gourmet
  • JekJek Posts: 35
    I hadn't thought of that aspect of the Woo.  Almost all of my cooks have been the longer variety.  The only thing I have done "hot" is reverse searing ribeyes.

    What are some direct cooks that you recommend?
    Small BGE // Wisconsin
  • Langner91Langner91 Posts: 565
    Jek said:
    I hadn't thought of that aspect of the Woo.  Almost all of my cooks have been the longer variety.  The only thing I have done "hot" is reverse searing ribeyes.

    What are some direct cooks that you recommend?

    I like to cook chicken, pork loin, and brats "raised direct" in order to prevent charring.  I use my woo without the stone in my Minimax for those cooks.


    Clinton, Iowa
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