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What to do when smoking a pork butt for an event the next day?

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    What to do when smoking a pork butt for an event the next day?

    Hi everyone,

    We were supposed to have a neighborhood picnic today, but it's been pouring rain and it was postponed until tomorrow. Of course I got up early this morning and had a 9-lb butt in the PBC at 7:30 this morning.

    If I want to bring the pulled pork to the picnic tomorrow, what should I do? Anyone have any experience with this? Should I finish smoking the butt today, wrap it tightly in tin foil with the juices from the crutch, and put it in the fridge? Then tomorrow, what should I do? Do i put it in the oven to bring the temps back up to 195? Any idea on how long that would take?

    Thanks very much in advance. I'm also planning to smoke a turkey tomorrow as a practice run for Thanksgiving, so one option would be to bring a half turkey and half the butt tomorrow to the picnic, and keep the other halves for myself

    I'd do it up today and tonight pull it. Fridge it. Then reheat, covered, back to 170-180 tomorrow.

    I did 80lbs of butts yesterday. The guy I did them for wanted fresh pulled pork, not reheated. So they went into the fobro last night and stayed there all night. Two butts I had probes in read 140s this morning (house was 61, burr). You don't want them under 140 for any real length of time. I put them all back into the oven at 200, over the course of a couple hrs they were back to 170s, 180s. Back into the cambro. I'm telling you this story because it's another option, albeit a much bigger pain in the...wait for it...butt.

    If I had the choice though I'd just reheat.


    • smarkley
      smarkley commented
      Editing a comment
      Huskee is there pics and a write up somewhere... I have not seen it. Thats a lot of Butts!

    My best reheating results so far are to pull and vacuum seal then boil to heat back up.


    • SwampDonkeyzBBQ
      SwampDonkeyzBBQ commented
      Editing a comment
      This is the best method I have found.

    Thanks guys, this is helpful. I have a vacuum sealer, so I'll finish the butt tonight, pull, then bag and fridge. How long does it take to get the temps up the next day? Do you guys thermometer the pulled pork to get around 160?


      smarkley I didn't get any pics of this cook. I did a strikingly similar one back at the end of May. I dint remember if it's in pork, what you're cooking, or what but it's somewhere. For a graduation party today.


        I've never had any complaints about reheated pulled pork. In my experience it is probably the most forgiving meat of all time.


        • Spinaker
          Spinaker commented
          Editing a comment

        when you reheat, is the meat already pulled? or do you chill the butt as is (whole), then reheat and pull??


          Thanks guys, this was very helpful. I pulled the pork the night before, vacuum sealed it, and put it in the fridge over night. Today I first started to warm the bag in warm water, then put the pork into the oven in a covered pyrex pan at 300 degrees for about an hour and a half after putting a little apple juice in the pan. It still wasn't quite warm enough at the time of the picnic, so I microwaved it for a couple of minutes to get it up to 160. Came out very moist and delicious


            Pork is very forgiving. Wrap it tight in foil after pulling, put in the fridge. I typically put in the over at 170F for at least two hours when serving (for example, leftovers from a cook when just making dinner for the family). I think the key is to wrap tight (don't want a lot of air in there) and give time for the reheat (don't want to go much over 170-180F, so it will take some time). I honestly think it is just about as good the second day as it is the first.


              I have done pulled pork even a handful of days in advance of serving and it always got rave reviews. Typically, I have done the cook, pulled the meat and popped it into a disposable tin and tightly covered it with foil. When it came time to serve I would either pop the tin on a covered grill or pop it into the oven (pretty much the same thing) and once it was warmed I would remove the tin and let the guests have at it. All low/slow meat is best when served immediately after cambro, but in my experience pork butt shows the least degradation of all of the various meats when served as a 'leftover'.


                I usually just put it in the fridge, pulled, covered in a pan with it's juices and maybe a little bit of water too. Reheat the next day to 160-170, and it actually usually becomes more tender after cooling in its juices overnight.

                Regarding my last point, and maybe this should be another thread, but does anyone else have the same results? I feel like virtually every time I reheat either pulled pork or brisket after letting it cool overnight with some liquid, it's more tender than when it's fresh


                • New2Cue
                  New2Cue commented
                  Editing a comment
                  My pulled pork was amazingly tender the next day. It was scarfed up at the picnic in no time


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