You may be familiar with Smoked Pork Butt, also commonly known as Pork Shoulder. Initially, I wasn’t sure how or why these two names were interchangeable, since clearly they are not anatomical neighbors. Makes me think of the song, “The knee bone’s connected to the…. neck bone and the hip bone’s connected to the…ear bone. ” Anyway, this is that juicy roast that falls off the bone when cooked, “just right.” I see Instagram Stories where men and women wearing black, heat resistant gloves are picking up pieces of piping hot pork, right off the smoker. They lightly tug on it, only to see it fall apart in a tender, juicy heap. Yup, this is the Smoked Pork Butt I want to talk about.
Smoked Pork Butt is one of my go-to meals when I want to feed a big crowd a really, delicious meal, without too much hassle.
Why are pork butt and pork shoulder, the same piece of meat, but called different things? Well, as usual, there is a reason behind that too. Apparently, long ago (we’re talking Colonial times here people) when the butchers wanted to store or transport inexpensive pieces of meat, they would use barrels called, “butts.” This tough shoulder roast then became known as the “butt”, not because of its location on the little porker, but because of its storage vessel.
To confuse matters even more, there is an area above the shoulder of the pig, some call the butt and now a roast taken from that area is also called the butt. Personally, I like the Colonial version better, it creates a much more vivid picture in my mind with all those breeches, woolen socks and shoes with big, gaudy buckles. So, I am sticking with that version.
Smoked Pork Butt is infused with the flavor of wood smoke, while it cooks low and slow, until it becomes juicy and fall off the bone tender. It is phenomenal!
There are quite a few people who have never smoked meat. Many haven’t had the opportunity because they don’t own a smoker and there are many who don’t own a smoker because they think it is a complicated, cumbersome endeavor. Handsdown, I have done most of the smoking of meat in my house. From my recipe for Smoked Spatchcock Chicken to my easy Smoked Brisket, I am comfortable with smoking meat. I like the process and having a Traeger Electric Smoker, makes it so easy. I pour the wood pellets in, set the temp, plug in the meat thermometer and decide how long I want to smoke whatever it is I have on the grill. I love knowing how to do it and I LOVE the taste.
Smoked Pork Butt
- 1 8-9 pound Pork Butt/Shoulder
- 1 cup Pork Rub Seasoning (can use any brand you like)
- Rub seasoning mix of your choice on all sides of the Pork Butt. Let sit uncovered for 20 minutes while the smoker is preheating.
- Preheat the smoker to 250 degrees with the lid closed for about 20 minutes.
- With the fat side up, place the Pork Butt onto the smoker grill. Insert thermometer, close the lid and smoke until the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.
- When the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees, carefully remove the pork butt from the grill and wrap in several layers of heavy duty aluminum or butcher paper, sealing tightly.
- Place the Pork Butt back onto the grill, with fat side up and continue smoking until the internal temperature reaches 204 degrees in the thickest part of the roast.
- Remove roast from smoker and let rest in foil for 30-45 minutes to let juices redistribute. After the rest time, open foil and either shred the meat, discarding the bone or break meat into chunks to eat.
When your smoked meat is done, you can shred the meat adding your favorite BBQ Sauce, tossing to coat. This can be served as pulled pork sandwiches topped with coleslaw or how about chunks of smokey pork drizzled in BBQ sauce or brown gravy resting on a bed of garlic mashed potatoes? The list of how to eat this goes on and on. Making Smoked Pork Butt is so easy in fact, we have it a couple times a month, which generally means leftovers for a few night. I’m telling you, there is nothing like smoked pork and sweet potato hash, topped with homemade chipotle sauce, oh my goodness!! That is a recipe for another blog post though. Enjoy friends!
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