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Times for them butts
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allanon Offline
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Post: #1
Times for them butts
Hey guys, I'm going to be smoking two 4-1/2 lb bone in butts for a little moms day get together tomorrow. I'd welcome any advice on a rub recipe but what I am really wondering is how much time to cook them for.

I know that butts are really a 'ready when it feels right' meat but you have to 'plan' a little right? So I thought I'd go with the 1 1/2 - 2 hrs per lb, but then I guess I started to wonder if I should be counting the total weight or the avg weight the butts. For example if I total the weight thats 9 lbs so thats 13.5 - 18 hrs, or if I avg the weights its 4 1/2 which means 6 3/4 - 9 hrs. The times are so drastically different I thought I'd find out what ya'll think.

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05-11-2008 04:24 PM
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SoEzzy Offline
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Post: #2
Re: Times for them butts
It is max weight per butt that you'll cook to, not total weight.

I like to guestimate from 1:15 / lb on smaller butts to 1:30 / lb on 10 lbers so a 4 1/2 lb butt will be checkable in about 5 1/2 hours in and a big butt 12 1/2 hours, these are at 225 - 235 on the grate, and this is just to when I start checking not to when they are done.

If you cook at higher temperatures you cut back on the estimation time by about 3 minutes / lb per 25 degree increase in cooking temperature.

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Respice = you didn't use enough spice the first time! adspice = you ought to add spice, you know? prospice = you should be an advocate for spice!
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05-11-2008 05:08 PM
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Swine Steward Offline
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Post: #3
Re: Times for them butts
Getting a butt to cook within a consistant time frame is still a challenge for me. Fortunately my last step is wrapping them in foil and storing them in a cooler until dinner time. I just have to get them off the grill between one and five hours before dinner. That target I can hit!
05-13-2008 12:09 AM
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Infamous Dave Offline
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Post: #4
 
I did 2 butts this last weekend.
I smoked them at 225 degrees.

The 7 lb butt took 11 hours (it was perfect)
The 3 lb butt took 6.5 hours (the therm read 197 but it still could have used more time to get tender, but I was out of time)

It just goes to show that no 2 butts are alike. I have learned to give myself pleanty of time and adjust to it if the butt gets done quicker (like the last post said wrap in foil if need be and hold it).

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05-13-2008 09:43 AM
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allanon Offline
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Post: #5
Re: Times for them butts
I got the butts in the WSM around 9:00 am yesterday morning. Waited untill I was sure the temperature was holding at 250 and went to work. Told the little lady to check it every hour or and make the nessicary adjustments to keep it at 250. She calls me at like 2 or 3-ish and says the smoker has stayed at 250 untill just now but it has dropped to 230 wondered what she should do. So I told her that 230 was well within the range I needed so it was fine. She calls me back at 4:45 and says its down to 160 :shock:. She then tells me that she opened the vents all the way and it started to climb so I figured everything was good. Shortly there after she says it only went up to 165 and what should she do. I figured I better take off early and go see what the heck I can do to get them done. Got home and discovered that in my quest to find the right amount of fuel I shorted this cook. Opened the door and there was nothing but ash in there. I thought about starting some more briquettes and trying to get the temp up a bit but figured that I'd check the butts first and see if there was any chance they were ready. Not even close :cry:! I opted for the foil and throw in the oven as we were trying to eat at 6:00 and I was hoping that the foil and oven temps would help.

Well needless to say my family happens to run on standard time (which is 30 minutes late :lol: ) which gave me a little more time to try to get them done. Unfortunatly when everyone finally arived I pulled them out of the oven and gave them a few minutes to rest (no where near long enough, but they were about to turn into an angry mob :rollSmile and tried to give them a pull. One butt wouldn't pull at all ended up and kind of a mix between slice and pull, and the other one kinda pulled but was a lot work to get it to pull and had a big peice in the center that wouldn't pull. It was really good and I got lots of compliments on how good the rub I made was and how good the meat was, but it certainly wasn't nearly as tender as I was going for. So the question is did they just need more time in the heat, or would a longer rest gotten them there? When I realized it was 5:20 and we needed to eat around 6 I cranked the oven to 350, was that a good or bad?

All in all a great cook, food tasted great, and (this is the best part :wink: ) there is just the right amount of leftovers for a few lunches this week 8)!

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05-13-2008 10:27 AM
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Gene Offline
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Post: #6
Re: Times for them butts
Been there done that. I had 4 butts in the Traeger for 12 hours and 2 of them still weren't tender as they should have been. So I had 5 hours left to go, I just put them all in the house oven for that time foiled @ 250 degrees. Put 'em in a cooler with towels and all was good at 11am for the work lunch. Ya just don't know sometimes. So many variables. Maybe that tougher butt was off a boar. I've heard that female pigs, (gilts) can be more tender.

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05-13-2008 10:54 AM
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Jeff Offline
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Post: #7
 
I cooked 2 butts in my WSM this past weekend.
The temp stayed steady at 225 - 235* for the entire cook.
Both butts were about 7 lbs and took a little over 15 hours to reach an internal temperature of 195*.
I then wrapped them in tin foil & put in a cooler to rest for the 3 hours before dinner time. They turned out great.
I always read of others cooking similar sized butts in the 12 hour range, but mine always take 15 or 16 hours. I always do mine as an overnight cook and use a full heaping ring of lump charcoal.

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05-13-2008 11:18 AM
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SmokinJoe Offline
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Post: #8
 
I've got a 6-pounder in the Smokette right now, 2 small chunks of Hickory with a handful of soaked cherry chips...

Can't wait to break out the trailer rig.

-joe

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05-13-2008 11:22 AM
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PackerBacker Offline
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Post: #9
Re: Times for them butts
Allanon... More time was needed, you only had them on for 7-8 hrs with 200*- 230* temps, Depending on cook'n temps 200-250, you will need 15-18 hrs. And yes, been there done that :wink: But one thing is true, WE wont do it again 8)

Dave

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05-13-2008 12:07 PM
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allanon Offline
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Post: #10
 
PackerBacker;p="9319 Wrote:Allanon... More time was needed, you only had them on for 7-8 hrs with 200*- 230* temps, Depending on cook'n temps 200-250, you will need 15-18 hrs. And yes, been there done that :wink: But one thing is true, WE wont do it again 8)

Dave

15 - 18 hrs for two 4 1/2 lb butts :shock: i have seriously been under-estimating my times...

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05-13-2008 01:53 PM
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PackerBacker Offline
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Post: #11
Re: Times for them butts
I didn't go back to the first post to see the weight, and I have never seen one that small, but a 5-7 lb can take that long, (15-18) It all depends on alot of things, #1 cooking temp, How much total weight you have on the cooker, to many to list really :wink: Don't give up, just have fun doing it, and take notes! on your cooks! I know Gene takes notes, but there the same every time!

1. Dump in pellets
2. Load meat in cooker
3. Close door
4. Turn knob to 225*
5. Take nap

Love ya Gene! Tongue
Dave

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05-13-2008 02:28 PM
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Cyclops Offline
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Post: #12
Re: Times for them butts
Don't disregard the "density difference" between cuts of meat. I have found that when a butt hits a plateau,(usually around 160*) different pieces come off the plateau at different times. I have been told that the reason is the amount of fat that has to be "broken" first. I find that the tenderloin looking piece of the shoulder,(adjacent to the blade ) is always the most tender part but it never seems to reach 195*. So, I'm guessin' that it just depends on that particular butt?
And Packerbacker is correct! Fill, set, sleep.

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05-13-2008 08:35 PM
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