Cooking North Carolina Pulled Pork Or Pork Butt On A Big Green Egg

Smoking a pork butt will take 12-18 hours, so plan ahead so you are not eating at midnight.  Also, because of the the time it takes to cook, I find it better to cook at least 2 butts.  Leftovers keep well, so make some extra.

Much of this recipe was as a result of trial and error and from this great post by Elder Ward.


After gathering your ingredients, follow these steps.Pork Shoulder Roast Butt Whole in Cryovac (2)

  1. Remove the butt from the Cryovac package and rinse with cool water.  Allow to dry.  This picture shows the but, along with the Dizzy Dust, before the fat cap has been trimmed.  Note: place the cellophane under the butt. Pork Butt with Dizzy Dust
  2. Trim the fat cap to remove the large portions of fat.  You do not want to trim off all of the fat, because as the fat cooks off it will help to make the meat tender.Pork Shoulder Roas Butt Whole in Cryovac (4)
  3. Rub a generous amount of Dizzy Dust on all parts of the pork butt, wrap in cellophane and refrigerate for 4 hours.  Ensure you cover the entire butt with the rub.  Push the rub into all the openings of the butt.   Pork Butt with Rub Pork Butt with Rub 2 Pork Butt with Rub 3
    • You can make your own rub, Elder Ward has a good one, but I have found Dizzy Dust is easier and just as good as any other rub recipe.  Also,  some people inject the butt with, I have done this and it does not make an appreciable difference.
  4. Prepare your BGE with charcoal.  I use a Real Hardwood Charcoal from Whole Foods, I have also use Cowboy Charcoal and BGE charcoal.  All work well.  If you want a detailed explanation of fire building see Elder Ward, I find it easier to fill the fire box, and remove the butt later to add more charcoal.DSC00182 BGE with Fire Box Filled with Charcoal
  5. Place the butts on a roast and rib rack, with an aluminum drip pan under it to catch the drippings.  Also, the in the pan you will pour about 1/2 cup of a mixture of 1/2 cider vinegar and apple juice. Rack with Drip Pan Butt on Rack
  6. Light the BGE and get the temperature to 225.  Adjust the top and bottom to keep the temperature at 225.  I suggest staring the cooking at about 8 pm the night before you plan eating.  Watch the BGE for a few hours, to ensure the temperature stays in the 215-225 range.
  7. Place the butt on the BGE.,  Setup the BGE for indirect cooking and just before adding the butt add a few chunks of presoaked hickory.Butt on BGE 1
  8. The next morning the fire should still be going.  If not, you may need to remove the butts and add some more charcoal.
  9. About every hour sprinkle the butts with a mixture of 3/4 apple juice and 1/4 cider vinegar.
  10. At about the 12-hour mark, insert a thermometer to check the internal temperature of the butt.  You want to get the internal temperature to at least 190, 200 is the desired temperature.  At this point the BGE temperature can be up to 250.  A higher temperature will not hurt the meat.   Pork Butt After 10 hours
  11. When the but has reached the needed internal temperature remove the butt from the BGE and wrap it in aluminum foil.  Allow the butt to sit for at least an hour before slicing or pulling, trying to cut it earlier will be too difficult. Finished Pork Butt
  12. Remove the outer skin, also know as the bark, and set to the side.  This is later sliced and added back to the meat to add flavor.  The bark is very flavorful so add it slowly to the other meat. Pork Butt Carved
  13. Now is the time to slice of pull the pork.  It is possible to cut the pork into bite-sized pieces, but the traditional means of preparing the pork it to pull it.  To pull the pork, use two forks and shred the pork with the forks until you have the entire butt reduced to a shredded pile. Pork Butt Chopped
  14. After the pork is shredded sprinkle with vinegar sauce.  This will remove the grease add some flavor.  Also, lightly sprinkle with Dizzy Dust.  The pulled pork is ready to serve.

The pork can either be eaten on its own, or the better way is to eat it on hamburger buns with a scoop of coleslaw.  Similar to a sloppy joe.

A few notes:  The first few times I smoked a pork butt I worried that I would overcook it.  This resulted in pulling the butt off the smoker too early.  This was a mistake.  As long as you start at a low temperature, 225, for the first few hours, there is little danger that you will overcook the butt.  Take your time and leave the butt on until it reaches an internal temperature of above 195.

The other mistake I made when first smoking a pork butt was waiting too late at night to start.  I would wait until 9 p.m. the night before to start the butt.  This again was a mistake.  No matter what I did the fire would usually go out over night.  I have had much more success starting the butt at 6 p.m., then even if the fire goes out over night you can always start it again in the morning.  The lesson: start early.

If you do not want to use, or can not find, Wilber’s Barbecue Sauce, you can make you own vinegar sauce.


  • 2 Cups cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbs. turbinado sugar, or plain sugar
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 fresh cayenne pepper, or 1 tsp. red pepper flakes

Place all ingredients in a bottle that allows the mixture to be shaken out.  An old soy sauce bottle works well.

Other recipes for the Big Green Egg:

10 Responses

  1. […] Read the rest here: Cooking North Carolina Pulled Pork Or Pork Butt On A Big Green Egg … […]

  2. Ololo! I like what is written here!!

  3. Nice work. I love pulled pork and I love my Big Green Egg!


  4. Braddog –

    Great to hear you liked the pulled pork. I always read your blog.


  5. Not bad, really not bad. Thanks for the post!

  6. […] Cooking North Carolina Pulled Pork Or Pork Butt On A Big Green Egg Smoking a pork butt will take 12-18 hours, so plan ahead so you are not eating a pork butt will take 12-18 hours, so plan ahead so you are not eating at midnight.Tags:  ahead, big, butt, carolina, cooking, eating, egg, green, hours, midnight, plan, pork, pulled, smoking […]

  7. I’m surprised that you have to add fuel to your BGE and that it goes out overnight. I have never had to add fuel to mine, even for a 20 hour cook, and mine has never gone out overnight. It’s dropped some degrees overnight; sometimes it’ll go down from 225 to below 200 overnight, but I’ve never had mine go out on me.

    If you’re interested in more details, i can send info on how I build my fire for long smokes.

  8. You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation however I in
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    It kind of feels too complicated and extremely large for me.
    I’m having a look forward on your next submit, I’ll attempt
    to get the hang of it!

  9. followed your system many times had great success every time thanks. ps. i use my own run mustard,salt brown sugar,chili powder, paprika rub., to each his own..

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