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a boston butt smoking in a masterbuilt electric smoker

Smoked Boston Butt in Masterbuilt Electric Smoker

A Boston butt, or pork shoulder, rubbed with a classic BBQ rub and smoked in a Masterbuilt electric smoker, or any electric smoker. Pulled and served on a bun with a vinegar sauce.
4.5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 2 hrs 30 mins
Cook Time 8 hrs
Total Time 10 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Australian, BBQ, Smoked
Servings 12 People
Calories 450 kcal


  • Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil
  • Aluminum Foil Trays
  • Cutting Board
  • Knife
  • Smoking Wood chips
  • Brush or spray bottle (preferably the latter)
  • Large forks or a Pair of BBQ Bear Claws
  • Internal Meat Thermometer
  • Masterbuilt Electric Smoker
  • Plastic Wrap


  • 4 Tbsp of brown sugar
  • 3 Tbsp of salt
  • 3 Tbsp of paprika
  • ½ Tbsp of cayenne
  • 1 Tbsp of onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp of garlic powder
  • 2 Tbsp of ground black pepper
  • 5-8 lb Boston butt
  • Salt to taste to add at the end
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Apple Juice or Cola in a Spray Bottle (optional to spray during the cook)
  • Olive Oil or Yellow Mustard
  • Blues Hog Tennessee Red BBQ Sauce Or any vinegar based BBQ sauce for pulled pork


Prepare the Pork Butt

  • Trim any excess fat from the exterior of the boston butt. Trim the fat cap down to 1/4" thickness. Score the fat cap with a meat knife in 2 directions perpendicular to each other.
    trimmed boston butt
  • In a bowl, mix all the dry ingredients. This includes the brown sugar, salt, paprika, cayenne, the onion and garlic powders and the ground black pepper. Mix it all to make the dry rub. Keep in mind you can always buy your own dry rub or use your own recipe. It’s up to you.
  • Cover your boston butt with a thin layer of olive oil or yellow mustard, then generously apply your rub to coat the entire exterior of the meat.
    rub on a boston butt
  • Wrap your boston butt in plastic wrap and place it back in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight.

Start the Smoker

  • Plug in and turn on your electric smoker. Set the temperature to 225°F.
  • Fill your water pan. Make sure all your vents are open.
    vent on an electric smoker
  • When the smoker has come up to temperature, place your chosen wood chips in the wood chip loader and insert it back into the smoker.
    adding wood chips to a masterbuilt electric smoker
  • Remove the pork from the refrigerator, add any additional rub that may have come off, and when the smoker is producing smoke, place your meat on the top rack.
  • Place a disposable aluminum pan a rack below to catch any drips. Place your thermometer inside the pork aking sure to not touch the bone.
    a boston butt smoking in a masterbuilt electric smoker
  • Set the timer to 8 hours and close the door to the smoker. Every hour you can optionally spray the exterior of the meat with apple juice or cola to help form the bark and keep the meat moist.
  • Your meat will take on average 1.5 hours total to cook per pound. You can empty and refill more wood chips for the first 1-3 hours. After this, the meat will not absorb much more smoke flavor so save your chips.

Texas Crutch

  • When the internal temperature of the meat hits about 150-155°F, remove it from the soker and triple wrap it in aluminum foil. Replace the thermometer and place back in the smoker.
    boston butt wrapped in foil
  • Once the internal temperature hits 192°F, remove the pork from the foil and place it unwrapped back in the smoker to firm the bark back up.
  • Once the internal temperature hits 197°-203°F, remove the pork from the smoker and place in an aluminum pan. Let it rest fo 20-30 minutes

Pull and Serve

  • Pull your Boston butt using a pair or forks or bear claws. Discard any large pieces of fat and the bone.
    pulling boston butt with bear claws
  • After you finish pulling, taste for saltiness and add salt to taste, mixing as you add it in. You can also add some apple cider vinegar to taste to add some acidity.
  • Serve with buns and a vinegar based BBQ sauce on the side to top with like Blues Hog Tennessee Red.
    pulled pork on a bun



Video courtesy of armadillopepper.com
Keyword barbecue, bbq, BBQ Rub, Boston Butt, electric smoker, How to, Masterbuilt, Pork Butt, Pork Shoulder, Pulled Pork, rub, Setting up a Smoker, smoked, Smoker, Smoking, Texas Crutch, Wood chips, wood smoke