Author Topic: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork  (Read 199727 times)

DivotMaker

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Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« on: October 06, 2013, 03:05:37 PM »
I've set this topic as a "sticky" because users requested it.  This is not to promote my method for a brined pork butt, but to simply make it easier to find.  I had no idea this recipe would get such attention, and I'm humbled that so many like it!  Thanks to All!


Trying something new today!  I started off with a 9.34 lb bone-in Boston butt.  Trimmed it up yesterday, and put in a brine:

1 gallon water
1 1/8 cup kosher salt
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tblsp garlic powder
1 tblsp onion powder
1 tblsp cayenne
2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp #1 Instacure (pink curing salt)  [edit: This is a later addition to the brine, but was not used on this cook.]

Heated the brine to blend all the flavors, cooled and placed in the fridge.  I put the butt in a big a$$ ziplock bag with the brine about 3 pm yesterday.  I haven't decided on a brining container yet, so I just used a giant ziplock.  Took it out this morning at 5:45 am, rubbed with yellow mustard and Famous Dave's Rib Rub (I used this last week on some ribs, and wanted to try it on a butt - really good on ribs).  Before rubbing, I rinsed the butt thoroughly with water and patted dry.

In the smoker at 6 am with 6 oz of cherry and hickory (about 80% cherry) @ 225.  8 hours in, it's well into the stall at 185. 

This is my first time brining a pork butt, so I'll let you know how it goes!

ps - gotta get a brining container.  I was worried all night that the bag was going to break and soak my fridge with pork brine! :o

Allow 1.5-2 hours per pound for pork butts to cook to 190!  It's easier to get done early, and hold in the smoker or cooler, than to take longer than expected and not have your meal done on-time!
 
« Last Edit: August 31, 2016, 08:13:00 PM by DivotMaker »
Tony from NW Arkansas
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DivotMaker

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2013, 04:22:26 PM »
9:10 in, at 190.  (Edit:  190 is the temp I use now on butts).  Smells soooo good!  Shooting for 200 on the Maverick.  When it hits it, I'll double-foil and let it rest.  Waiting impatiently for the results of the brined butt! :P
« Last Edit: April 12, 2016, 08:12:48 PM by DivotMaker »
Tony from NW Arkansas
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BIG BOB

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2013, 04:45:59 PM »
cant wait to hear the news.... wish this laptop had "smell-a-vision"
B-EE-RR-UN BEERRUN!

Bob from New Castle, IN.

DivotMaker

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2013, 05:21:04 PM »
Here Bob... try a "scratch and sniff" on your laptop! ;D
Tony from NW Arkansas
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shomesmoke

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2013, 06:08:37 PM »
Looks good Tony, I have never brined a butt either, were all waiting on the taste test!
Mark from Missouri
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BIG BOB

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2013, 07:04:21 PM »
SMELLS GREAT!!!!!
B-EE-RR-UN BEERRUN!

Bob from New Castle, IN.

es1025

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #6 on: October 06, 2013, 07:06:56 PM »
Tony
Looking for your comments if there is a difference between a brined butt and non-brined butt.  He said "butt"

I guess you don't wrapped/foil your butts during the cooking process to speed up the stall.

 
Ed from Northern NJ
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DivotMaker

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2013, 07:08:14 PM »
The results are in!  10 1/2 hours total cook (to 199 - got hungry). (See above... I now go to 190, which is great, and saves a lot of time). Wrapped the little piggie in foil and let it rest 20 minutes (again -- hungry).  (THIS butt only took a little over 1 hour per pound, but allow up to 2 hours per pound, on butts.  It's better to take less time, and hold it for later, than to take more time, and end up not having dinner done on time!)

The results? ....Absolutely the BEST pulled pork I've a) ever made, and b) ever eaten!  I am a total, 100% committed convert to brining!  I had no idea the results would be so spectactular!

The meat was twice as moist as I've achieved with injection; no contest.  The taste of the deep internal meat was very flavorful - definitely rivaling injection. 

The Famous Dave's Rib Rub was a definite hit on the pork butt!  I like to use my own rub, but if you're in a hurry (or lack the needed ingredients to make a new batch of your rub), try Dave's.  It's really tasty.

The pictures look like others I've posted of a done & pulled pork butt; don't be fooled - they do NOT tell the whole story!  The level of moisture and tenderness in this meat CAN'T be shown in pictures; only the mouth can detect that! 

I was concerned that the sugar/salt brine would impart an overly-salty taste; it did not.  The taste was balanced with spices and smoke, but not too salty.

Bottom line:  I'll be getting a brining container pronto, and will continue to experiment with different brine recipes and techniques!  This is definitely a winner!! ;D ;D

Edit for Ed - no wrapping.  I like the chewy bark I get unwrapped.  I just let it power through the stall!
 
« Last Edit: August 31, 2016, 08:11:22 PM by DivotMaker »
Tony from NW Arkansas
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BIG BOB

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2013, 08:06:26 PM »
I have never brined anything before, better start my research....
B-EE-RR-UN BEERRUN!

Bob from New Castle, IN.

DivotMaker

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2013, 08:20:19 PM »
Me neither, Bob.  First time for everything! :D
Tony from NW Arkansas
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DivotMaker

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #10 on: October 06, 2013, 08:31:53 PM »
I actually got the idea for brining a butt while roaming around www.thebriner.com website.  They have a brined butt recipe that doesn't involve anything other than brine.  That got me to thinking, but knew it needed a rub for the exterior after the brine. 

Lots of folks brine poultry, but like Bob, I've never brined anything!  Guess it's natural to be hesitant of things you don't know much about.  That's definitely changed now!  Glad I took the first step!
Tony from NW Arkansas
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Smokster

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #11 on: October 07, 2013, 11:37:56 AM »
Tony, that pulled pork looks really moist and juicy.  Thanks for posting this, I have to try this method next time....
Tony from Toronto
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DivotMaker

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #12 on: October 07, 2013, 12:46:27 PM »
Thanks Tony!  Definitely worth trying.  I'm amazed at the difference!
Tony from NW Arkansas
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shomesmoke

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #13 on: October 07, 2013, 01:03:07 PM »
Tony, What is your plan for a brining container? I checked "The Briner" out I think it is a good idea but for the large and small size plus the shipping to me its nearly $65 seems like alot for 2 plastic buckets. Would any plastic container from wally world work or does it need to be a food grade container?

Mark
« Last Edit: October 07, 2013, 01:13:40 PM by shomesmoke »
Mark from Missouri
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DivotMaker

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Re: Brined Pork Butt for Pulled Pork
« Reply #14 on: October 07, 2013, 03:59:38 PM »
I'm going to find a pickle bucket or other food-grade plastic container big enough to hold something about 10 lbs.  Much larger won't fit in my fridge.  I like the briner due to the hold downs incorporated into the design, but I also think they're a little pricey for 2 buckets.  I'm not certain, but I think some plastics are not food safe, so I'm going food safe only.
Tony from NW Arkansas
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