Author Topic: Cooking time for quantities  (Read 1298 times)


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Cooking time for quantities
« on: October 20, 2016, 01:55:00 PM »
Probably has been discussed before but if I am smoking for pulled pork can I decrease the smoking time by using 2ea  3# pound pork roasts which would be 3 to 6 hours rather than 1ea  6# pound pork roast with 6 to 12 hour cooking time? by the way I have the little guy smoker.
Any help greatly appreciated.   


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Re: Cooking time for quantities
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2016, 08:47:18 PM »
Hi, and welcome to the club!  Great to have you with us!  Now that you're here, it would great if you'd head over to the Introductions section and tell us about yourself (like BBQ experience), so we know your experience level.  It's also great to add a first name, and town, to your signature line, so we know you better.  We're pretty informal and familiar, around here! ;)

To answer your question - yes and no.  I need more information... what kind of pork roasts are you using?  3 lbs is really small, and will not smoke well.  Small cuts (under about 7 lbs), that require a "stall" (where the internal fat renders for several hours, and the temperature stops climbing) are unpredictable.  This happens more with briskets, but pork roasts can too.  Now, if you are smoking, say, two 7 lb Boston butts, they will time like one, not a 14 lb hunk of meat.

Since you just said "pork roast," I'll give you my nickels-worth of 2... :)   There are several types of cuts that stores just label "pork roast," but they are far from the same!  I've seen 2 or 3 lb sections of pork loin labeled "pork roast."  This would be a terrible cut for pulled pork; way too lean!  What's common, in some regions, is to label a "picnic roast" as a pork roast.  You can tell the picnic cut because it has a straight bone and is usually cone-shaped (like a ham).  The picnic is the lower portion of the front leg.  This is a good cut for curing like ham, or for slicing, but not preferred for pulled pork.

Now for "the money" advice (the extra 3-worth):  Get a bone-in Boston butt pork shoulder, 7+ lbs, if you want the best pulled pork!  The Boston butt is the upper shoulder of the hog.  It has a blade-shaped bone, and is the absolute preference of all serious smokers (even competition).  If you need to know the best way I know to prepare one, check out this post:

Brined Boston Butt for Pulled Pork

Stay away from the little 3 lb unidentified cuts, and go with what works!  Your dinner guests will sing your praises as the best Pit Master they've ever known!
Tony from NW Arkansas
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  • Gregg - Fargo, ND
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Re: Cooking time for quantities
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2016, 12:42:59 AM »
Tony is right on as usual. I stay away from the Boston Butts smaller than 6.5 pounds. A 6.5 Boston Butt is not optimal, but is the smallest that I would bother smoking for pulled pork. Smaller ones would either be smoked for slicing or cubed and smoked for pork burnt ends.

Follow the steps in Tony's link and you will enjoy some of the best pulled pork that you have ever tasted.
Gregg - Fargo, ND
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Re: Cooking time for quantities
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2016, 06:48:18 PM »
If you've already got the two 3# pork roasts, then you need to get them smoked, before you move on to your next smoke. They will still take about the same time as a single 6# roast will. Depending on the "actual" cut as Tony (DM) pointed out. Anything under about 7-8 pounds will not reduce total time by much if at all. If they are butts (shoulder) or picnics (lower shoulder toward the shank) and you want to pull for sandwiches, the smaller cuts will take about the same amount of time as the larger cuts, and smoke to about 195 for pulling. If it is a "loin", then you will want to smoke to about 145 and slice.
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