Cold smoke Boston Butt.

How long should I cold smoke my 8lb Boston Butt before sousviding to get a good smoke flavor? If I cold smoke how would I get a nice bark on the meat?
Hope I gave enough info.

Welcome back nb, how were your results with those Christmas hams we had such a good time helping you with? I am surprised you’re still stuck on weights as a cooking criteria after all this time.

Apply a wet rub and smoke two hours for a light flavour and up to four if you want some bitterness.

Never cold smoked before.Since there’s no heat involved didn’t know how long to smoke. What about the bark? Will cold smoking for 2-3 hours make a bark?

nb, you might want to reconsider embarking on an unfamiliar and potentially harmful cooking technique with a large piece of meat. Your statement “no heat involved” is disconcerting if not startling.
And how were those Christmas hams?

Please describe your cooking plan up to this point. Your Community needs some basic details to better assist you. To start, some of those details are your type of smoker, your fuel of choice, the type of rub employed, and your expected flavour and texture outcomes other than the bark.

I regret that explaining the art and science involved in safe and successful smoking along with the specifics for your success is beyond the time i have available today.

My understanding is that cold smoking is only for cured meats because the temp is in the danger zone for too long. I sometimes push the limits but I wouldn’t do this. I think the risk is too high. Hate to be a wet blanket and I don’t think you will get bark with cold smoking. I’m pretty sure that takes heat. .

Hey nb, the following link to an item that you might find useful and informative:

nb Do you have a grill or smoker to hot smoke the Butt. I did a 10# Butt for Mothers Day with hot smoke and Sous Vide and got the bark, smoke flavor, and moist meat using the Food Lab guidance. 18 hrs at 165 does a great job. .

Thanks for the reply. I have a Masterbuilt smoker with a cold smoke attachment. I tried several ways to cook pulled pork with varied results going totally Sous Vide was juicy and shreadable but no smoke flavor…will try your way. Do you ever cut the but in half? Thanks again. I’ll keep you posted.:+1::+1::+1:

The Masterbuilt is great for the Butt. Yes, I have cut them in half and if you do that they fit in a vacuum seal bag. I did mine in a 2 gallon Ziplock bag but from now on I’m cutting them in half. You get more bark that way but don’t use water in your smoker. The guy that got me into Sous Vide is a chef and he advised me to smoke first for more smoke flavor.

I did the 10 pounder 6 hours at 240 in the smoker. Internal temp was 158° F. I bagged it and into the Sous Vide at 165 for 20 hours. Next time I’ll do 18 hours for slightly different texture - I hope. I suspect that with the Butt cut in half you can get near 160 internal in 4 hours or less.

Good luck on your cook and have fun with it.

Gonna try your recipe for the butt tomorrow. When I smoke the butt in my Masterbuilt you say do not add water to the pan? I will cut mine 1/2. Smoke at 240 until internal temp gets 158-160. Do I still Sous-Vide for 18 hrs?

Sorry, I missed your post. How was the pulled pork?

Why no water in the pan? My understanding is that it the water gives the fat dripping off a place to go that will not flare or interfere with the smoking process. Also, cold smoking meat, which has been mentioned is bad for safety reasons. Cooked, smoked, or cured meats are a different story.

The collagen in the meat doesn’t break down until somewhere around 180 degrees F, or so. If you want tender meat you will need to cook enough to break down the collagen, which also makes the meat really juicy. I smoke pork butts at 225 F until internal temp reaches 165 F then wrap in foil and continue to cook (without smoke–it wouldn’t get through the foil anyway) until internal temp is 200 F. Onto the grill sans foil finishes the bark to a crispy goodness. Can’t imagine how sous vide could help after smoking, but cooking first, then finishing in the smoker might be ok.

I’ll be interested to hear the results.

Dunno about “cold” smoking, but I thought this Video was interesting on the subject of smoking before or after sous vide - FYI

PS: these guys are prolific on sous vide videos (some more interesting then others but the enthusiasm and subject variety are wonderful)