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I have been bbq'ing for a few years now and I am still trying to find that jaw dropping pulled pork and brisket. I have competed in a local bbq competition twice now with great results on my gas cooker (with an offset smoker attachment. My technique is simple. I spray meat with canola oil, use an apple etc injection, byrans butt rub, smoke using hickory/apple wood, when meat temp at 160 degrees I wrap in foil, when 195 I remove heat, rest, then pull. Well for the last few years I have been dreaming of owning an fec. I finally had an opportunity to purchase an fec 300 (we have big plans with this awesome machine). Anyway, I purchased a bag of hickory pellets, threw in two 7 lb butts with rub, wrapped in foil at 160, smoker set on 240, when meat temp was 195 I removed meat so it can sit for one hour then unwrapped foil. What I had was a completely different taste that was not pleasant and a pile of mush. (this happened last night and I wake up this morning still dissapointed hence the new membership and post)

It appears that I am going to have to start all over on learning how to cook on the fec 300. If anyone can provide me some tip's I sure would appreciate it. Btw, I am in eastern NC.
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All it sounds like to me is just a timing issue. When wrapping with your other cooker your internal temp was 160 but it might have been already drying out. I might have been cooking with a dry heat where the FEC's won't do that as much like most other cookers. That is the reason why so many people spray the meat during the cooking process. You did mention it being a gas cooker, so if you were cooking with that it wouls have been a dryer atmosphere.
215 Welcome to the forum.

A few suggestions, if I may...

Go back to basics on your new FEC. Try cooking a butt or two without foil.

Take it to 187 and use a fork or skewer to test for tenderness. I rarely take PB's over 192. Once done, then foil if you need to hold it. If you're using bone-in butts, the blade bone will tug free with relative ease when the meat's done.

Team Butcher produces an injection specifically for PB's. It's good stuff...helps maintain moisture and adds good flavor.
I even trim the fat cap and never have a moisture issue. I like the 175-180 range to pull my butts. I use this thing on a drill. which works great. They sure can turn to mush at 195. I smoke @ 225 and a 8# bone in butt will usually take 13-15 hours.

I had an unusual order a while back where the guy requested "more bark" so I cut a bunch of 2 - 3" slits in the top to give it more surface area to open up and brown up. Worked pretty good and he was happy with it.
Sorry you didn't like the results. But mushy is over done. Did you add any other liquid when you foiled.

The other thought I would have is which side of the rack did you place the meat in. I have aFEC500, and I think they are the same except for the width. The right side will get most of the heat coming from the convection fan. And I think the 300 has two fire pots, and that may have caused the meat to get a littl e hotter blast of heat.

I would think the meat may have over shot your target temp. I foil my meats the same temps as you. And have never had the problem. I have done a few KCBS with my 500, most have been on the 100. But I have placed with it. Like Max said, m,aybe back down on the final temp to allow for the carryover.


i own a Q joint in colorado, and i use an FEC 500.i inject my butts with a mixture of apple juice, brown sugar, kosher salt, with a splash of soy sauce. i smoke them at 220 for 14 hours, its not mushy at all. it comes out perfect every time. and we sell on average 12 butts a day in sandwiches, tacos, nachos etc. once you get it figured out, you will love your 300........btw. i dont foil
Thanks for everyones input. I will try to answer/respond to everything. I am use to cooking with gas which would explain the idea of a dryer atmosphere. I didnt add any other moisture to the meat once I placed it in the smoker. I think I will try everyones idea of no foil. The fec 300 only has one fire pot that is a little to the right looking into the access door. Takes quite a few pellets to burn 12 hours. As a matter of fact, it went through 20 lbs of treager hickory in 12 hours at 240 degrees and it was warm outside. The convection fan is high centered in the back. I will try the approx 14 hours time unfoiled and will start checking doneness prior to 195. Thanks for everyone's input.
I have a little update. Threw in a 8 lb shoulder with byrans rub, 220 degrees, No injection because I broke the needle off, I set the fec 300 for 14 hours using treagar hickory pellets, woke up the next morning (still cant believe I can go to sleep while smoking) and checked the meat. Thermometer read 190 right at 11 hours. The bone twisted very easily. I removed the shoulder, let sit 45 minutes then pulled it apart. It was wonderful. Bark was good, tenderness was spot on, fat rendered, good stuff. I am going to Sam's club today and get the pork butt and try dublin551 instructions. This is exciting.
I am in Raleigh. Where in E. NC are you? I have an FEC500. I really like it.
I smoke my butts at 250 for 8-10 hrs depending on how many I have in the smoker and take them to 190. I do not wrap and I do not inject but rub them. I leave the fat cap on and put them in the smoker fat side up. Randy is right. My right side is hotter. I foil them and into the cambro when done. When I pull them I slide the fat cap off and also use a pork puller. People seem to like the way the pork puller pulls the meat.
I can see if you take the internal temp up they will get mushy. That has happened to me. Hope this reiterates some of the other posts results.
Mike L.
I live in Nashville, NC beside Rocky Mt. Last night I smoked 4 butts purchased from Sam's Club for our Christmas lunch at work. I first used Arthur Bryants rub, made my injection with 2 cups apple juice, 2 cups of water, 2 tbs soy, 2 tbs worcestershire, 2 tbs sea salt, and 1 cup brown sugar. Heated till simmer then cooled with a ice bath. loaded everything last night at 8:00 pm and used treager hickory pellets fat side up. Just took them off 30 minutes ago (12 1/2 hours) and wrapped in cling wrap then heavy foil and placed in a cooler. I must say that I am kinda concerned. The internal temp was 190 but the pork is falling apart. lost 1/4 of one butt thanks to tenderness, gravity, and the ground. I am kinda concerned because I intended on cooking longer but since it was falling apart I removed and didnt want the mush I had before. Im hoping foiling after smoking doesnt cause that to happen since I now have to wait 2.5 more hours. I was surprised the amount of shrinkage on one of the butts. I expect some but one was significantly more then the other three. And before I forget, temp was set to 220 and I did not foil.

in a gallon jug i fill 3/4 full of apple juice, 1 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 1/3 cup of kosher salt, and apox. 1/3-1/2 cup of soy.... then shake well, fill jug with water, and put in frig for a day. before injecting? shake or stir gallon jug and great for me. you can always change amounts to suit your taste.


i use 8-10 lb. butts bone in. i take them out in the mourning and pull them right away. i think the problem your having is that your wrapping your butts and your trapping the heat and it keeps cooking the butts and it turns them mushy.if you wrap at 190, temp could go to near 200. try to pull first put in a foil pan then seal with foil. the pork will cool down some and stop the cooking process, but will still be to serving temp and put the foil pans in the cooler wrapped with towels or blankets to keep temp up. others may have a better way, but this works for me. also for what it's worth, i smoke at 8676' elevation. in texas [where i live in the off season] i would smoke at a higher temp [225-230] and a shorter cook time. hope this helps.
Thanks dublin for your information. I can now say I was concerned for nothing. Everything went well and I received many compliments from the employees. The butt's I purchased come two per cryo pack and they were combined weight of 15 lbs. I will eventually get this right. I have tried a few sauces with the smoked pork and I'm still looking. In eastern NC the sauce usually consists of vineger, salt, sugar, and pepper flake. Always worked well when I cooked on gas but with the smoke it didnt seem to mix well. Im still looking. Sweet baby ray's honey was awesome but not much acceptable around here. Do ya'll use a red vinegar sauce or something else?

M. Lewis, Do you have a restaurant in Raleigh?
Smokin's Finishing Sauce is very good. If you're into the vinegar based sauces, try:

Smokin Okies Vinegar Mop for Pulled Pork (also called an Eastern Carolina Sauce)

2 cups cider vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar (packed)
2 tablespoons salt (I like the flavor in Kosher/Sea Salt and bigger granules)
2 tablespoon red pepper (crushed)
1 teaspoon cayenne (I've also used Hungarian Paprika)

We've used this as a substitute to his finishing sauce, and this kicks the flavor up a notch. The Pags's like the vinegar base.
Pags, Do you have a particular rub and/or injection that works with the vinegar base sauce and what would be the best wood to smoke? Thought about just using a salt and pepper mix as I have read in forums. Keeping it simple may make the sauce go with. I purchased some cherry and apple wood pellets also. I haven't yet smoked with them yet but still researching other peoples success and look forward to trying it.
I like a heavier smoke profile and go with hickory for pork butt...5+ oz. I don't inject since it has enough moisture.

I've got several rubs I like with pork butt...Williams Rib Tickler, John Henry's Pecan Rub, Dr. BBQ Big Time BBQ Rub (recipe on line), Andy's Rub from Paul Kirk's Championship Barbecue Sauces book. Don't use them all at one time, just individually.

I've got a new favorite given to me from a friend back east, met through this forum. We kind of had our own little rub exchange, and he gave me his personal rub described as his "go to pork rub". It's just great with pork butt or loin. Oh, and he also gave me a fine cigar from a Caribbean country not currently listed as a strong US trading partner. Big Grin

glad it came out well for you! i make my own sauce. we use about 40 gals. a week at our place and sell dozens of 18oz. bottles a week. me and my son-n-law are the only ones who know how to make it. [yes i trust]. but in a pinch i use "head country". i like to use it as a base and add my favorite spices, sometimes sweet, sometimes hot hot hot.
I do not have a restaurant. I have a food truck ( trailer ) that I have the 500 mounted on. Go to my web site and you can see a picture of the 500 mounted to it. Also do a search here and I have put pics on here of our new trailer. If you are in Raleigh look me up and come see the trailer.
Contact me on the web site and I'll give you my cell number.
M. Lewis
I'm curious as to what device you use for injecting your pork butts with? I tried injecting my two 7.8# boneless pork butts tonight before putting them in smoker using your apple juice mixture mentioned above and most of it quickly ran back out of the needle holes or came out thru the grain of the meat if near an edge. I am using a syringe with #14 needle (similar in size to what a veterinarian would use on horse, cow) that I got thru a BBQ supply place that they sell for injecting their mixes into briskets & etc. Are there any injecting tricks you use that can help a novice like me? I try not to use too much pressure at each injection spot. I previously tried the grocery-store type injector that has a needle with two holes on the side of it, one low, one up a bit - but I managed to get more on the counters and my shirt than in the meat with that one....
I shall confess, I went to walmart and purchased my injector... I do not know what size injector it is but one advantage is the needle connection point is stainless and wont break off. Its just a basic small injector with two holes on the tip of the needle that are not offset. I have been placing the butts fat side up in a pan and start injecting every square inch (approx) on the fat cap. I work the needle a few spots in the same hole by not pulling it all the way out and going back in on an angle. As I am pulling the needle out I use my finger to cover the hole then press lightly and rub to close then onto the next. I think you will always have injection leak out either through the injection point or between the muscles groups but I am far from and expert or experienced and others would probably have better suggestions.

For those who love smoking whole hog's, I would suggest purchasing a F Dick brine Pump. Finally purchased mine this year and it is awesome... Kinda pricey but to me it's worth it..
Last edited by Former Member
Originally posted by Nodrog:
I'm curious as to what device you use for injecting your pork butts with? I tried injecting my two 7.8# boneless pork butts tonight before putting them in smoker using your apple juice mixture mentioned above and most of it quickly ran back out of the needle holes or came out thru the grain of the meat if near an edge.

Did you refrigerate it for a day like Dublin said?

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