Cooking time for 4 butts


M Krulee

TVWBB Member
Hi All - I've got a load of people coming at the end of the month and thought about doing some pulled pork. I've done 2 butts a number of times with great results but i will probably do 4-6 this time around - to be confirmed once i get a firm headcount. I've read a number of posts about the added required fuel and rotating the butts half way through the cook, etc.. but what concerns me is the time required.

I plan on low and slow, MM and I'll be buying the butts at Costco. They usually come two to a package, boneless. I'm thinking about 30-40lbs of butt. using the 1.5-2 hours per lb cooking i really have to cook these for 45 hours or more? Or am I just being totally stupid here?

I'll be trying Chris Lilly Six-time World Champion shoulder (first time doing an injected butt) along with some Fat Johnny's Piedmont Sauce (and some No.5 that i've got). I'm looking forward to an overnight cook - hanging out around the pool having some beers with my friends while some yummy lovin' is cooking in the WSM.

Appreciate any guidance you all can offer!


PS - if you've never had the Piedmont Sauce - you're missing out!! very, very good.
The answer to your question is Yes, but I'm not saying to which question.

Due to the mass of cold meat going into the smoker, it will take just a little longer to cook four butts than it takes to do one.

When you go to a two hour movie with three friends, does it take eight hours to watch the movie?
It's going to take as long or a little longer then 1 or 2 butts. Cooking time depends on a lot of thing. What temp? How steady is the temp? At what point is the butt done? You will find each one will be done at different times. Just keep checking for probe tender and leave yourself a little extra time before guest arrive.

You may also want to reconsider boneless. I find the boneless dry out faster because there are many more "ends" then with bone in. Just my personal preference.
thanks Ken - no need to be apologetic. not offended. i like and agree with your movie anology. Honestly i figured about 25-30% more time overall - but thought it was worth checking lest i have a bunch of hungry folks and no food to serve...

Paul - understood on temp / consistency, etc... one of the things i love about the WSM is once it's at 225-250 it's rock solid. assuming that i want them off the heat at noon, I think i'll start them around 6pm the night before. that'll allow me 18 hours. should be enough time and i don't mind holding it for a few hours or more if they come off early. Planning to eat late afternoon.
Mike, I did 6 of those from Costco on Smoke Day. Did the minion with K Comp,foiled pan and apple wood ..... it took 16 hours. I rotated at 12 hours, but that was the first time I opened the cooker.

I've done more bone in than boneless, but these were as good or better than any I've cooked.

Enjoy your party and let us know how it goes!!
Walter I love you!
this was exactly what i was hoping to hear. You did exactly what i was planning - to include the apple wood. I'll be following in your footsteps with hopefully equal results and will report (with pics).
Good luck Walter. My only suggestion is that if you are not using water I'd rotate half way through cook. If you are not using water the bottom grate will be much hotter.