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New Egger - First Pork Butt (with a twist)

Hello all - New egger here, about 3 months into life AE (After Egg). After reading the posts on here for a while I finally decided to jump into the fray. I fired up my first pork butt this weekend but we decided to change things up and make pulled pork bahn mi sandwiches. They were unbelievable - maybe the best pulled pork I've ever had if I must say so. The slaw/veggie crunch with a solid squirt of Sriracha balanced out perfectly with the pulled pork. A side of cabbage fried rice (sounded weird to me but was really good too) to round things out. Nice smoke ring.

I injected the day before, mustard base with Dizzy Jamaican Firewalk rub, and cherry wood.

From what I have read across the forum, it seemed to me that there were basically two options for the cook:

- start the cook Friday night and keep it lower (250* = 1.5 hr/lb) and longer to eat Saturday afternoon/evening

- start the cook bright and early Saturday but higher temp (300* = 1 hr/lb)

I chose the first option given I didn't want to push the limits on how long my stomach could hold out if option 2 took longer than expected, and I haven't done an overnighter yet. Without a controller I woke up to a fairly cold egg Saturday morning, despite being fairly stabilized before bed. I nearly panicked but kept my cool. After restarting and keeping at 250*, it went for another 7 hours when I pulled it at 196* internal. Total time of about 18 hours but I am not sure exactly how long it was "cold" overnight.

So my question is - which is the preferred route for pork butts - lower/longer or slightly higher/shorter? Is a controller a must for overnight cooks?



  • henapplehenapple Posts: 15,986
    Great job...longer cooks = better bark.
    Green egg, dead animal and alcohol. The "Boro".. TN 
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 16,770
    Cook both ways and decide for yourself-matter of choice and sometimes the actual time available.  Regardless, the end result will turn out great.  And as Travis notes above-no need for a controller.
    Louisville;  L & S BGEs, PBC, Lang 36; Burnin' wood in the neighbourhood. # 38 for the win.  Life is too short for light/lite beer.  
  • boatbumboatbum Posts: 1,273

    Nice results.

    Controller is optional in my mind, temp monitor is convenient


    Cookin in Texas
  • I find that for each cook the egg has a mind of its own.  Some cooks mine wants to settle in at 250 sometimes 275, I don't fight the temp.  I am flexible with the temp range and let it roll.  For overnights I try to stabilize the egg with the meat in for at least 45 minutes before I hit the hay.

    No controller for me, but I may be asking for one for Christmas.
  • PSHomePSHome Posts: 41

    We’re less than two weeks in on our LBGE and decided to do a 10lb pork butt Sunday night into Monday.   The plan was to cook it for 1.5-2 hr/lb at 250°F – started at 4PM on Sunday with the hope of hitting 190-200°F before we went to work or at lunch.  Temp seemed to do well through the AM.  I only checked it once overnight – at 4AM it was 225, so I just nudged open the damper a bit. Temp was still 225 at 6AM.  Adjusted damper a bit more and then off to work.  At lunch, noon, the dome temp was 100….upon inspection, the lump had pretty much gone out.  The drop in temp and ultimately the lump going out was due to 1) a significant drop in the wind overnight and then no wind during the day and 2) my dump and light approach to the lump vs arranging/stacking methods.  Back to egging our first pork butt…loaded up some more lump, stabilized the temp at 250 and headed back to work.  The wife had the afternoon off and did a better job than Stocker or CyberQ.  Pork was pulled at 5:30PM at 195.  Wrapped for 1 hr, and then pulled.  A few learnings and a few things we would do differently, but overall excellent results.  <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />


  • SmokeyPittSmokeyPitt Posts: 9,860
    First of all- nice job!  The sammie and side combination is very interesting.  I love hearing about different variations for pulled pork.  

    I agree the temp controller isn't necessary.  Sometimes the egg will go forever no problem, but there are certainly variables that are hard to predict- mainly restricted air flow due to ash build up or small lump pieces.  As others mentioned, a Maverick ET-732 is one nice gadget to have.  It doesn't control the temp- just allows you to monitor it remotely and you can set high/low alarms.  So, if the egg drops below temp it will wake you up.  I think the hi-que charcoal grate is also a nice cheap way to improve airflow.  

    Which came first the chicken or the egg?  I egged the chicken and then I ate his leg. 

  • Ragtop99Ragtop99 Posts: 1,560
    edited November 2012
    I've had good luck at 275 - 300* so I just get up in the morning and get it going.  Prep the Egg (and sometimes the butt too) the night before so all I do in the morning is lite the fire and put it on. 

    Interesting sandwich.  Almost looks too healthy to eat.  ;)

    Cooking on an XL and Medium in Bethesda, MD.
  • BrownieBrownie Posts: 1,023
    Controller is completely optional. Just remember a few things when going manual (no controller) and lo n slo.
    (1) Stabilize your target temp before you insert your meat
    (2) Don't fiddle with your temp after you insert your meat (no matter how bad you want to, if you stabilized you shouldn't even look at your temp for at least 1/2-1 hour IMO) unless you temp is dropping at a steady rate.
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