One of the best dishes to add to your menu is Boston butt, whether for a lazy weekday brunch or a large family lunch. It is not a single dish to savor; you can pair it up with many sides.
You can also make many dishes like stews or meatballs out of this single one. With pulled pork offering so many options, its quantity is not small either.
So, if you want to know how long to cook Boston butt in oven and how to serve it, dive right ahead!
How to Select the Right Pork Butt?
Pork butt, or pork shoulder, as you can also call it, is a part of pigs’ shoulders. This part of the shoulder used for cooking the dish is called the Boston butt.
Usually, in the market, the pork butt is sold in 5–6 pound packages, with all the fat trimmed away from the meat. But if you’re planning on roasting the pork shoulder, buying it with the fat will add some extra flavor.
As the fat melts while grilling or roasting, it will soak into the pork shoulder, filling it with necessary and healthy fat while also adding to the taste.
Added to that, try to get the pork butt with bone in it, called the picnic part of the shoulder. Like the fat, the bone adds to the flavor as it’s cooked.
What is the Optimum Temperature to Cook Boston Butt?
Because of the presence of connective tissues and fat, it needs to be simmered. To make the tissues tender and soft, they must be cooked at a minimum of 195 degrees.
But the optimum heat needed to get the desired tenderness and flavor for the pork butt is 225-250 degrees Fahrenheit. However, sometimes you can raise the temperature to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Cooking the pork at a higher temperature to reduce the time will not give you the same result as slow cooking at the right temperature. So, anything above 300 degrees will slightly change the consistency of the pork butt.
Nevertheless, you might try preheating the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit before cooking it at the correct heat.
How to Cook Delicious Boston Butt in Oven?
The tender, delicious Boston butt that melts in your mouth with a burst of flavor is very easy to make.
Note the ingredients below and follow the step-by-step process to enjoy a good plate of Boston butt.
- Desired pounds of pork butt
- Kosher salt
- Brown sugar
- smoked paprika
- Ground black pepper
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Ground cumin
- Red pepper flakes
- Mustard seeds
- Balsamic vinegar
- Garlic paste
How to cook Boston butt in an oven?
- First, add the kosher salt, brown sugar, smoked paprika, ground pepper, red pepper flakes, and other ingredients to a bowl. Pour 1-2 spoonfuls of water on top and thoroughly mix.
- Now take your pork shoulder and rub it with the prepared mixture. It should be coated evenly over the pork and on all sides. The deeper you rub the spice mixture, the more flavorful it will be.
- Keep the pork shoulder tightly wrapped in plastic wrap and keep it in a pan. Place this wrapped pork in the fridge for a few hours or overnight if you have ample time. It will help in the brining process.
- Keep rubbing the spice mixture a few times at regular intervals. It will help with deepening and evening out the flavors.
- Before cooking the pork shoulder, make sure you thaw it by placing it 3–4 hours outside.
- After the pork is completely thawed, preheat the oven to 250 or 270 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Take a rimmed pan and place a layer of aluminum foil over it. Keep a wire rack or make a rack out of aluminum foil by scrunching it into balls. This rack is necessary to drain the fat present in the meat.
- If you’re using pork with fat, place the pork on the rack with the fat facing up. Keep it in the oven uncovered and let the pork shoulder roast until the internal temperature reaches around 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Use a meat thermometer to measure the internal temperature. When measuring, measure it in the thickest part of the meat to ensure it’s fully cooked.
- It can take anywhere from 2 hours to 12 hours, depending on the quantity of the pork butt you are cooking. So, keep checking so that the pork doesn’t get overcooked.
- The outer layer will be crisp when you take out the pork butt. Let it rest outside for 15 minutes. If you want the Boston pork to be moister and tender, wrap it up in 2-3 layers of aluminum foil and let it rest for 2 hours.
- Take two forks and shred the pulled pork. Ensure that the crispy outer layer is evenly mixed with the juicy and tender inner layers.
- You can serve it as a Boston butt sandwich with a good spicy sauce, add it to a salad, or make a taco with it.
How Long to Cook Boston Butt in Oven?
It takes approximately 40 minutes to cook one pound of pork shoulder at 250 degrees Fahrenheit. So, if you’re cooking a 7 or 8-pound pork butt, it’ll take anywhere from 5–10 hours.
The longer the meat is cooked, the more tender it becomes. The cooking time might vary based on whether the pork shoulder has a bone.
If the pork has a bone, it’ll be more flavorful, but it’ll take a couple of minutes to cook to the desired consistency.
What if you’re using frozen pork butt?
Even if your pork shoulder is frozen, it is easy to cook Boston butt. So, if you want to thaw it before using it, the best way to do it is by steaming the frozen pork meat in the oven.
When you preheat the oven before cooking, place a bowl or pan filled with water alongside the frozen meat and steam it. This way, the meat will thaw, and you can add the ingredients and start cooking regularly.
How to Store the Leftovers?
How long to cook Boston butt in oven? You can refrigerate it for a maximum of 7 days. But, to savor the same texture of the meat, store it only for 2-4 days. Then, when you reheat the Boston butt, place the pulled pork on a pan and use your hand to sprinkle some water on it to get moisturized.
Cover the pan tightly with aluminum foil and place it in an oven preheated to 270-300 degrees Fahrenheit. When heated, take it out and leave it covered to keep it warm.
If you want to make it last for many months, then the best option would be to freeze the Boston butt. First, cut the pulled pork into one-pound divisions and store it in separate reheatable bags. It can be kept for nearly 4 months.
The Best Sides to Serve with Boston Butt
Side dishes make any dish more fun and delicious to eat. From BBQ sauce to salads, Boston butt has many such sides that make this dish a chef’s kiss.
This pulled pork goes well with everything, be it potato, cucumber, or salad. Eating it with salads is a tastier and healthier option too. With the vegetables, vinegar, cheese, wine, and spices in the salad, the Boston butt will taste like heaven.
Cornbread is the most widely preferred choice for Boston butt. As milk, sugar, eggs, and corn-meal give cornbread a sweet flavor, this is the best side for spicy and flavorful pulled pork. With cornbread and Boston butt, you can make tacos, muffins, sandwiches, casseroles, and whatnot.
Boston butt is a dish you can eat and get hooked on with a single taste. In addition, it’s easier to make and takes less effort to store.
So now that you know how long to cook Boston butt in oven, it’s easy to learn and whip out a plate of this delicious just like that!
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