Pulled pork on a Weber kettle grill

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Picture of Pulled pork on a Weber kettle grill
The best meal that takes a day to make and a few minutes to eat: pulled pork
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Step 1: The Grill

BBQ is low and slow cooking. Although most 'Qers make pulled pork on a smoker, the same results can be achieved on a kettle. In fact, the benefit of a kettle is that you can grill and BBQ. By grilling, you use direct heat directly under the meat. (Think: steak) With BBQ, you use indirect heat, which is more like using an oven.

Step 2: The Meat & The Rub

Picture of The Meat & The Rub
Pulled pork is made from a cut known as a Boston butt. The butt is the upper part of a pork shoulder. When shopping for a boston butt, be sure it is not boneless. The bone adds tremendously to the flavor of the pork.

The initial flavor for the pork is provided by the rub. The rub is a blend of spices that is worked into the pork prior to cooking. Rubs are like relatives, everyone has one. Here is one I sometime use:

2 Tbls Dark Brown Sugar
2 Tbls Sweet Paprika
1 Tsp Cumin
1 Tsp Garlic
1 Tsp Freshly Ground Pepper
1 Tsp Sea Salt
1/2 Tsp Ground Mustard
1/8 Tsp Celery Seed
1/2 Tsp Ancho Chili Powder

Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl until well blended.

The rub can either be added right before the cook, or the night before. The choice is up to you.

Whatever you do, be sure to take the pork out of the fridge at least 30 minutes before cooking.
barcoblanton6 months ago
I've been using weber grills for years and if I were to use 20 briquettes on each side as you suggest the temp would be 300 to 350..i usuall use 14 each side and add 6 every 45 mins
mnlang (author)  barcoblanton6 months ago
You are completely right if it was 20 a side, but it is 20 total, with only 10 each side. Although since I've posted this, I've moved to two zones with all the charcoal to one side. About 5 hours in, I rotate the pork and if necessary, add a few more coals to finish out the cook. Cheers!
hsides18 months ago
Sure did :) took another hour and a half but it turned out great! Love that rub recipe
hsides18 months ago
It's probably a little too late to ask now as I'm almost done but obviously for a smaller piece of meat it won't take as long? I'm 5 hours in and hitting 170 but just cooking a small picknick roast.
mnlang (author)  hsides18 months ago
Yes, if it is a smaller cut, it won't take as long. However, BBQ will "stall" around the 170 mark for several hours. So even though the internal temp will rise fast, it will plateau and only climb slowly until it's done. I hope it turned out great!
TheWilly178 months ago
This method was a huge success! It was the best PP I have ever made. I will be using this method on a Beef Brisket next week, thanks for posting this for everyone to share.
mnlang (author)  TheWilly178 months ago
That is so awesome, I'm glad it worked out!
TheWilly178 months ago
Ok, I'm trying this method. I am 45 min in and my grill surface is 260°, wish me luck the rest of the way.
TracesDad10 months ago
I started Smoking because of this Instructable. I used the dry rub recipe on the first butt i smoked and got more complements than anything. Here we are now 4 years later and i am going back to your method. i will not say that i have mastered anything but i have become very efficient with a smoker. I am planning on lighting up tomorrow morning for Father's Day weekend and I have to say that i am very happy i found this Instructable again. I will be following this to the T !!!! thank you for posting this!
mnlang (author)  TracesDad10 months ago
That is so awesome, thanks for letting me know! For more grilling tips, be sure to check out my site:!
EricCable10 months ago
I am three hours into my cook and it's not looking good. I followed the instructions exactly (45 pieces of charcoal on each side, light 20 pieces and split between the two sides) and it never got above 180 (vent on bottom open, on top closed)

Any suggestions would be appreciated, but probably too late to save this chunk of meat.
mnlang (author)  EricCable10 months ago
All hope is not lost. Crack the to vent to get some air flowing. The temperature should rise. The meat is still cooking at 180, just slower. Increase the air moving through the grill and you should be fine. Good luck!
EricCable mnlang10 months ago
Cracking the top vent helped. Unfortunately, I had piled so much fuel on the grill the temp shot up to over 300. The good news was, it was done at the original finish time, but cooked a little fast.

I did like your rub recipe.

It will work better next time. Thanks
damocl11 months ago
Great guide , thank you
mnlang (author)  damocl11 months ago
Thanks, glad you liked it!
dmoskowitz11 months ago
Another brilliant guide! Might I recommend Bear Paws for said pulling (though these are a different brand, they are on Amazon Prime):
mnlang (author)  dmoskowitz11 months ago
Thanks...and yes, those work great! I've used them once before, but have yet to order a pair for myself.
Quick-tune1 year ago
Yuk! what IS that stuff? do you actually eat it? it looks like there's been an RTA!
dpark20002 years ago
Thanks for the tutorial. Very informative. I've made pulled pork at 275 deg on the gas grill. I'm curious if you have tried a a slightly higher temp? Also, what size of Boston Butt did you use?

Missourian2 years ago
Well done.
cimz2 years ago
I used this instructable to make pulled pork yesterday. Thank you so much for posting! It definitely made the entire process much easier. Thanks!
mnlang (author)  cimz2 years ago
Thanks and awesome, that's great! I'm glad you had success!
ehmbee4 years ago
My My My that is some fine looking meat.
That's what she said
Heh, that never stops bein' funny.....
mnlang (author)  ehmbee4 years ago
It definitely is a cheap way to a great dinner.
bubbaopus4 years ago
 Beautiful cuts of meat there!
Great Rub Mix as well!
cryptic994 years ago
How often do you add the wood chips?  I would think you would have to add new chips or chunks every hour or so.  also do you prefer chips over chunks?  Thanks for these detailed instructions!!
mnlang (author)  cryptic994 years ago

Typically, I add them in the beginning and then about an hour in.  At a certain temperature point, the smoke stops having an affect on the meat in terms of creating a smoke ring.  To continue smoking the entire cook is IMO unnecessary, but others may say different.

I go with whatever I have on hand, but typically go towards chips.  They just need to soak long enough so they don't burn up too fast.

Good luck!
 If you buy a metal smoker box, or make smoke pouches from aluminum foil, you'll get a longer smoke... With the pouches, you can make up a bit in advance. I do this on my gas grill...
vandal11384 years ago
Highly informative sir. Well done. And be sure to keep some sunblock on that icon of yours or it will burn
mnlang (author)  vandal11384 years ago
Thanks! And thanks for the sunblock warning...because the worse part about the head burn is the head peel...horrible.
oooh, I bet that is preeettttyyyy. You should get a good even burn on that bad boy, and see if you could peel it off in one piece. That would would make a hell of an ible. How to shed your head.... If you make that happen I want to be in the credits!
tsangell4 years ago
Great pics, bro. You put some thought into them.
mnlang (author)  tsangell4 years ago
Thanks Tsangell. I have this strange disorder that compels me to photograph food!
tchiseen4 years ago
Great work, and thanks, I am now starving and dying for pulled pork.
mnlang (author)  tchiseen4 years ago
Thanks Tchiseen...I know exactly how you feel.
Tobita4 years ago
I feel stupid for thinking C, H, and O stood for cool, hot, oh my!
mnlang (author)  Tobita4 years ago
Ha! Yeah, for some reason I probably could have used fractions or something, but at the time it just seemed must have been the beer talking :)
Tobita mnlang4 years ago
I didn't mark it on my barbecue, for the first couple of months, i peered through from the inside to see what difference it made :P

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