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Smoked Shredded/Pulled Chuck Roast Issue(s)

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    Smoked Shredded/Pulled Chuck Roast Issue(s)

    So today I smoked a three-pound Chuck roast using the recipe on amazing ribs.com. I followed the recipe, with the main difference being that the cook started out a little hot (around 275), but eventually went down to that 225-250 range. When it came time
    to shred the beef, and BUNCH of it didn’t shred particularly easy, and it seems like a lot of the fat/connective tissue didn’t render down as much as I thought it would. Any thoughts as to what might be the problem?
    Attached Files

    #2
    Did you cook it to probe tender? I’ve found some chuck roast is very lean and some are very well marbled. I only use very well marbled ones.

    Comment


      #3
      You need cook the entire roast to “probe tender.” It would appear and sounds like you didn’t take it far enough..

      What are you using to temp the chamber and meat? That generally needs to get into the 200 mark +/-

      Comment


      • bbqLuv
        bbqLuv commented
        Editing a comment
        Dito "probe tender!"

      #4
      Not enough time.

      Comment


        #5
        I have a ThermoWorks Smoke probe, and put it in what seemed to be the thickest part of the meat. Final temp at that point was 205, per the recipe.

        Comment


          #6
          Chuck can be a little tricky. But forgiving. Keep cooking until it is probe tender first more important than the temp in my experience.

          Comment


          • Mr. Bones
            Mr. Bones commented
            Editing a comment
            Yup.

          • bbqLuv
            bbqLuv commented
            Editing a comment
            Dito--"Probe Tender!" and "Yup."

          • HawkerXP
            HawkerXP commented
            Editing a comment
            +4

          #7
          There are several different muscles in a chucky. Some take longer to get tender than others.

          What criteria did you use to decide it was time to take it off the grill? Did you hold it in a faux cambro? If so, how long?

          Comment


          • NotTheGolfer
            NotTheGolfer commented
            Editing a comment
            I basically watched my temp probe, then just took it off the smoker when it hit 205. From what everybody here is saying, I guess I should have held it at that temperature longer before shredding it.

          • RonB
            RonB commented
            Editing a comment
            NotTheGolfer - when cookin' large(ish) hunks o' meat try to have it probe tender all over at least an hour before you want to eat. Two or three hours may be even better. And temp is just a guide - some times the meat will be ready at 200° or even lower, and sometimes you may have to go to 210° to get probe tender.
            On a chucky, if one of the muscles is not ready to pull, you don't have to pull it. You can slice it thinly across the grain to help it feel tender.

          #8
          I too have a couple questions. You mention "when it came time to shred"...what does that mean? How long was it wrapped and at what temp did you wrap, what was the finished IT, how long total was the cook? Pulled beef is a touch different than pulled pork in that it benefits from a bit higher IT and another hour or two total time.

          Here's what I do- trim all the exterior fat & dry brine it. On cook day, allow 12-14 hrs. Wrap it at/during/after the stall, whatever your bark preference, with foil, tightly so it can braise a bit. Take it to 205-210 and hold it there an hour before doing the faux cambro temp-waning hold phase. Do the hold phase for at least an hour, maybe 2, the longer the better. Then shred it.

          You won't get all the fat rendered out, there still may be a few stringy pieces, but taking its IT higher and holding it there then doing the faux cambro hold will give you the best chances at rendering as much of it out as possible.

          Comment


            #9
            Yeah... you just need to cook the crud out of it until it gives up the ghost. Probe tender in the whole roast.

            Also was it prime? Choice etc.

            after all that sometimes you just a tough old steer that’s having nothing to do with this business. True story.

            Seems like your on track though. Probe tender is where you want to be. I’m on the opposite side these days. I’m eating meat at medium and leaving “bite” to all other proteins.

            bottom line is if it was tough for you then it needs to be on the cooker longer.

            Comment


              #10
              As others have mentioned, overcook that dude. I did one Thursday night. Pulled it off at 201 internal, wrapped and held for 2 hours in a toaster oven at 150-F. Brought to work, shredded what would shred, placed in crockpot with onions and bell peppers, and ran on high for 4 hours. Darn awesome fajitas.

              Comment


              • HouseHomey
                HouseHomey commented
                Editing a comment
                I’m so gonna steal that. You got me thinking. Was there a Smokey goodness wafting from that crock pot?

              #11
              I cook chuck at 275 until 205 IT (wrap in butcher paper about 160-170), then I turn smoker down to 225-230 and hold the roast over 200 for another hour. Haven’t had a dry one yet and the shred at easy as a well cooked pork butt.

              Comment


              • glitchy
                glitchy commented
                Editing a comment
                Or...What Huskee said, lol

              • HouseHomey
                HouseHomey commented
                Editing a comment
                What Huskee said. Right. Lmao.

              #12
              205 should be good. Was most of it pull-able??

              Comment


              • NotTheGolfer
                NotTheGolfer commented
                Editing a comment
                Maybe about half of it pulled well. The rest of it had to be cut, or took considerable effort to pull.

              #13
              I gotta reiterate my well marbled vs lean comment because no one else seems to be bringing it up. I’ve tried lean chuckies and they just won’t pull properly and will be dry. Here’s a pic of the kind of chuckie I look for.
              Click image for larger version

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              Comment


              • HouseHomey
                HouseHomey commented
                Editing a comment
                Gawd man. I so wanna grind that sucker.

              • NotTheGolfer
                NotTheGolfer commented
                Editing a comment
                That’s a good looking hunk of beef! Mine wasn’t nearly like that, but had some decent marbling. It wasn’t labeled, so I assume it was USDA Select. That may have had something to do with it, as well.

              • RustyHaines
                RustyHaines commented
                Editing a comment
                That's a beautiful chuck roast Red Man. I look for just that type and many times I walk away without buying the leaner cuts. Usually when chuckies are on sale here the bin is full of leaner roasts. When I find a beauty like the one above I buy it regardless of cost.

                And yes, probe tender all over and faux cambro for at least an hour and 2 hours even better.

              #14
              My opinion: that recipe doesn't go far enough in how much cooking it takes to get a pulled pork-like consistency. I take it up to 210 internal temperature and let it ride there for about an hour before giving it a long hold in a warm oven or cooler. Also, I always wrap chuck roasts in foil once the bark is formed.

              Comment


              • Huskee
                Huskee commented
                Editing a comment
                Sounds familiar

              • Steve R.
                Steve R. commented
                Editing a comment
                It really can't be overemphasized, Huskee. 😀

              • Chuppy
                Chuppy commented
                Editing a comment
                Thanks, Chuck roasts were giving me a little problem also.

              #15
              Lots of great comments here! I feel like I have a better idea of what needs to be done next time. One more question: Once the Chuck roast
              hits the proper temperature, what’s the best way to hold it? In an oven? If so, what temperature should you set the oven to? Or, should I put it in a faux cambro? If so, what temperature should you let it get down to before you pull/shred the beef? How do you set up the faux Cambridge for holding? If you use the oven, should you use the faux cambro, too? Any discussion on these questions would be appreciated!
              Last edited by NotTheGolfer; January 17, 2021, 08:33 AM.

              Comment


              • Steve R.
                Steve R. commented
                Editing a comment
                Once it "hits" about 210 IT, just keep cooking for another hour. The water content of the meat won't let it get more than a degree or two hotter than that. I am able to set my oven at 150, so I sometimes go with that for holding. But a cooler, or anything else that significantly slows cooling, will work.

              • Huskee
                Huskee commented
                Editing a comment
                I just drop my cooker temp to maintain anywhere from 130-180, it matters nada the exact temp or the way you do it, it just needs to bask in some warmth for an hour or two (after the hour at 205-210) to further soften and render tough fat and collagen. If using a cooler, I preheat it with hot bath water from the tub faucet and then layer in some towels. The cooker I've been using all day is easier for me though.

              • fzxdoc
                fzxdoc commented
                Editing a comment
                Great advice right here from Huskee and Steve B . I follow it as well, and it turns out beautiful chuckies every single time--as long as I have chosen a nice well-marbled chuck roast to start with, as Red Man recommends.

                Have fun with your next chuck roast cook. I bet it will be great.

                Kathryn

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