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Cooking Costco Pork Shoulder in Oven (for pulled pork)

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I am cooking one of those behemoth Costco pork shoulders for the Super Bowl tomorrow. As you may know, the package contains two "roasts", not even sure if it is from the same pig. The total weight for the entire package was 15.5 lbs. If I had to guess, one roast was 6.5 the other 8.5 (or so). I am going to cook them in the oven. According to one website, a good rule of thumb for cooking time to get the internal temp to 190 is 1.5 lbs/hour. SO, the question is do I cook for a 15.5 roast or a 8.5 roast? How will the separate "roasts" cook? This is a huge difference as I will have to cook it for 23 hours (15.5 * 1.5) or 12.75 hours. (8.5 * 1.5).

Thanks for the help!

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  1. i think you cook for the 8.5 roast and check the internal temp for each after about 5 hours. i did two pieces totalling 11 pounds...put them side by side on a vrack and cooked at 425 for 20 min. and then 225 for ....at least 6 hours...
    i have 2 questions for you:
    1. what was the price per pound on the costco pork shoulder?
    2. are both pieces bone-in?
    if so, it might be a better deal than what i'm buying on wed. and i'll get it at costco instead.

    4 Replies
    1. re: redgirl

      Don't know where you live but I haven't seen pork shoulder at my Costco's in the Los Angeles area for a while now.
      I have seen the giant package the OP mentions at their Costco Business Center if you have one in the area you live and the price was around $1.50/lb and there is no bone.

      If you live in an area where there are Chinese markets, their prices and selection are pretty good too.

      1. re: monku

        burbank costco started carrying it in january.

        1. re: chez cherie

          Good to know. I used to get it all the time at the Los Feliz Costco and they stopped carrying it for a while. Maybe they have it again.

      2. re: redgirl

        Here in the East, Costco sells only boneless.

      3. I am finishing up four pieces similar to yours right now. At Sam's and Restaurant Depot here, you can get bone in or out. Same weight ranges. Your numbers are about right, but it all depends on what temp you cook at.

        I go low on the smoker for the first six hours or so, then finish in the oven in foil. Temp in either case is about 250. I go to about 195 or 200 internal, when they will fall apart. It takes about 10-12 hours.

        Hit them with a nice rub of paprika, chili, cumin, S&P, granulated garlic and onion, cayenne. Do them uncovered, at least for the first 6 or so hours. They have lots of fat and won't dry out. They will develop a nice outer crust (bark) when uncovered. Don't push them up against each other -- it will inhibit bark and slow cooking time. Foil them to speed cooking time, or raise temp a little.

        Prepare a thin NC-style sauce as they cook. Eastern NC uses cider vinegar and crushed red pepper. Pucker up for that one. Western NC adds some ketchup. I use that, plus a little brown sugar and salt. Heat to dissolve and combine sauce.

        Let the pork cool, pull apart, add some of that sauce, and you are good to go.

        btw, my pic is from a picnic portion of the shoulder (lower portion), and it sounds like to you have double pack of Boston butts from the shoulder (upper portion). You'll get a similar result.

        1. Thanks everyone. Our costco (phoenix) has the boneless shoulder and it was about $27 for about 16 lbs. The cooking time was a lot shorter than I thought. I put it in the oven at 200 degrees before I went to bed about 10:30 and the temp alarm (190) went off at 3:30 (much to the dismay of my wife). When I woke up, I transfered the meat to an insulated pre-warmed cooler stuffed with towels. I plan to pull the pork in about 4 hours and transfer to a crock pot and combine with the de-fatted pan juices. I did make some North Carolina BBQ sauce so I will probably mix a bit of that in the meat.

          So, hopefully this will work. Next time I will probably just put the meat in the oven in the morning...

          16 Replies
          1. re: Random987

            5 hours @ 200*.....you must have a magic oven. :0)

            1. re: fourunder

              The Will Owen recipe I use starts with deeply searing on the cooktop, 30 minutes at 450 uncovered and then covered at 250. It's usually done in 5-6 hours (7-8#er) which really surprised me the first time. I guess the first two steps at high temps gets it motor runnin'.

              And, yes, I buy those boneless shoulders at Costco also. I keep one intact and the other I grind for sausage and other things. I'd be really sad if they ever stop carrying.

              1. re: c oliver

                Don't you people have slow cookers? This is exactly why they were invented! :)

                My favorite way of making pork shoulder these days is with TJs cuban black beans (2 cans) and a jar of mango salsa (med spicy, on the sweet side). When it's done, I take my stick blender to the liquids and beans to make the gravy. Good times.

                1. re: Pylon

                  Not sure your point, Pylon. I have slow cookerS, Dutch ovens and all sorts of other cookware. Using one doesn't mean I don't use the others. I did a small pork shoulder in the slow cooker recently. Rubbed in seasonings, seared on all sides, put in the SC, added onions, garlic, jalapenos, about ten seasonings and a quarter cup of tequila. But the way I do a particular recipe of pork shoulder the DO is better than the SC. Searing, a first roast at 450 and then the rest at 250. The DO worked better for that. Additionally getting a 7-8# pork shoulder roast into most slowcookers would be problematic. And a 16#er? Forget it. Different tools for different jobs.

              2. re: fourunder

                That is why it was very disturbing at 3:30 at night. I am not sure what happened. I may have put it in the oven at 10:00, but that is still 5.5 hours. I didn't wrap them in foil, but I did put a small ramekin of apple cider and a dash of liquid smoke in the already crowded roasting pan. I am getting ready to pull them out of cooler to pull them. I will then mix with the de-fatted pan drippings, add some Carolina sauce and put them in a crock pot until everyone arrives.

                It does smell good, if that means anything....

                1. re: Random987

                  That cooking speed is faster than I would have anticipated... have you checked the callibration of the oven at that temp range? Maybe it is running hotter than the dial says. Anyway, I bet the end product turned out pretty good..... did it??

                  1. re: woodburner

                    Everything turned out great. I always worry about pulled pork, but it really is bullet proof, isn't it?

                    (although, I have to admit, the oven doesn't come close to a good smoker...maybe 70% of the way there...)

              3. re: Random987

                Susan spicer's jalapeno roast pork is outstanding. 325' (3-4 hrs) 6# roast... I've done a double pack. Time remains the same, just double the ingredients.
                rinse,pat dry
                make 1/2" incisions on the meat

                Combine:
                juice and zest 2 oranges
                2 jalapenos, stemmed, seeded, chopped. I leave the seeds for extra heat.
                2T chopped fresh thyme
                2T minced garlic
                2t kosher salt
                2T cracked pepper
                2T olive oil
                rub oveer the meat and into incisions
                place meat fat side up, cover w foil.
                roast 3-4 hours till fork tender.
                shred when cool

                add a bit of water or broth to roasting pan, scrape up brown bits.
                pour over roast.

                Terrific served with her green rice or for sandwiches on ciabatta with her pickled cabbage and creole mustard.

                1. re: JazzyB

                  The flavors sound good but I would definitely deeply sear on all sides, esp. that fatty side. Will make for a tastier end product. If done in a DO, it can go from cooktop to oven.

                  1. re: c oliver

                    You are replacing a smoker with an oven, using a slow cook method. Just as in smoking, a sear is not necessary. What doesn't melt away is thrown away. OTOH, it couldn't hurt.

                    1. re: JazzyB

                      I think you may mean that YOU are replacing a smoker with an oven. I'm definitely not.

                      1. re: c oliver

                        I meant in this particular recipe. Try it. Who knows, you might learn something from one of New Orleans' top chefs.

                        1. re: JazzyB

                          Oh, is Susan spicer a chef?

                          1. re: c oliver

                            Are you serious?
                            http://www.amazon.com/Crescent-City-C...

                            1. re: JazzyB

                              Yep. Totally serious. I just Wiki'd her and she sounds fine. Since I never watch shows like Top Chef and haven't visited NOLA in decades she's just not on my radar.

                              1. re: c oliver

                                Asa New Orleanian, I tend to forget not all are aware of our star chefs. In any case, her cookbook has gotten quite a bit of excellent press. Her restaurant Bayona is one of the best in NOLA.