Smokey Pulled Pork


Not for the faint of heart, this recipe will take 2 days to make if you do it right. You can shorten brine & marinating times to speed it up but you won’t get the flavor you deserve…

I’m making this over the weekend & will add photos and exact steps as I go. Wish me luck!

1 bottle hard apple cider (Angry Orchard works well)
1C cold black coffee
1/2 C red wine vinegar

  • Pork Rub
  • Wood Chips (mix 1:1 Apple Wood and Mesquite)
  • Foil Pans
    one large enough for roast, one smaller pan to fit in to bottom of grill

Place roast in 2 gallon ziplock bag & pour in brine. Squeeze out as much air as possible & seal baggie. Refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.

Remove from brine (discard brine) and pat dry. Place roast on sheet pan or cookie sheet, preferably on a rack. I personally don’t have one and make due putting it on a sheet pan. Liberally sprinkle pork rub over entire roast, rubbing it in as you go. Finish with the fat cap on top, covering it entirely with the rub. Refrigerate 8 hours or overnight. Place wood chips in a large bowel, cover with water and soak over night.

A fatty roast with a fatcap that covers the whole top of the roast makes for a moister, more tender roast.

Prepare the Grill

Make a ring of charcoal around the perimeter of the grill on the lower coal base. Start the coals (I prefer a charcoal starter to avoid lighter fluid taste from permeating the meat while smoking). When coals have white edges, pour around perimeter of grill over the first layer of charcoal. Carefully place a round foil pan with wood chips in the center of the coals and cover with water. *During the smoking process, the steam from the pan will add moisture to the cooking atmosphere and once the water evaporates the wood will start to smoke. Add another layer of charcoal over the hot coals. With the lid off, allow the new layer of coals to start to burning (10-15 minutes.) When the grill has reached 200 to 225 degrees F, add a liberal layer of presoaked wood chips over hot coals. Place the cooking grill over hot coals and wood chips.

Place the roast in the large foil pan, fatcap on top. Place in center of rack. Carefully pour the braising liquid into the corner of the pan, taking care not to wash the rub off of the top of the roast. Place the lid on the grill, opening top and bottom vents completely.

Unless you think your coals are not burning well, keep the lid on. (No peeking!!) Every time you take the lid of you lose smoke and drop the temperature, extending the cooking time.

Maintain a 200 to 225 degree F cooking temperature inside the grill, adding coals every couple of hours as needed. Add wood chips every time you add new coals.

When the pork reaches an internal temperature of 165 to 170 degrees F on an instant read meat thermometer (after about 3-5 hours), remove it from the grill and cover with foil. Return the covered roast to the grill and close the bottom vent. Continue to cook about another hour until done. When the pork reaches an internal temperature of 165 to 170 degrees F on an instant read meat thermometer (after about 3 to 4 hours), remove it from the grill and cover with foil. *The fat cap will likely be black at this point but now it’s a flavor cap!

The pork is done when it pulls apart easily (190 to 195 degrees F)
Remove from grill and let rest, still covered, for 30 minutes to allow juices to settle back into the meat. Remove meat from pan and discard remaining juices (this will be mostly, if not all fat.) Remove bone and pull apart the roast.


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