Smoked Pulled Beef With a Coffee Rub

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Pulled beef isn’t as popular as pulled pig, which is a pity since I believe it’s a really adaptable ingredient that can be used to create some of the tastiest tacos, wraps, pies, and pastas you’ve ever had.

I’ll teach you how to transform a slab of meat into delicious smoked pulled beef. Serve the pulled beef in a sandwich, or keep reading to learn how to create pulled beef tacos with creamy spicy sauce.

We’ll also make a coffee rub to season the meat. There will be no coffee flavor; it will just accentuate the powerful beef flavor of this cut, and you will finish up with such a rich complex flavor at the conclusion of your cook from the smoke, spice, and natural meaty flavour.

What cut works best for smoked pulled beef

When it comes to selecting a cut of beef for making pulled beef, you have a lot of options.

The first things that spring to mind are chuck and brisket. They both contain a lot of intramuscular fat and collagen, which lends themselves nicely to low and slow cooking methods. For this dish, I’ve gone with what we call the Oyster Blade in Australia, the Flat Iron Steak in America, and the Butlers Steak in the United Kingdom.

Before it is sliced into steaks, you would need the whole cut.

Because of its robust meaty taste, it performs really well as a slow cooked smoked pulled beef alternative.

Because of the broad chunk of collagen running through it, the flat iron steak is regarded a poorer grade steak when compared to the rib-eye and strip steaks.

That makes it ideal for smoking slowly and slowly. The fact that most cuts of meat smoked at a low indirect fire are often high in collagen and hence difficult to consume. We get a highly tender final result by breaking down all of the intramuscular fat and connective tissues, and that massive bank of collagen transforms to molten sticky jelly.

I propose that we start spreading the word about this fantastic cut of steak. I adore it, and the fact that it is still reasonably priced adds to the appeal. When most cuts become popular in the kitchen, the supply and demand issue enters in, and we observe a steady increase in cost.

On second thinking, let’s not share the news about this very handy cut; instead, let’s keep it our little secret for the time being.

Items that will help you cook these are:

  • A smoker (Im using a 22 Weber Smokey Mountain)
  • Lump charcoal
  • Rub shaker
  • Boning or trimming knife
  • I’m using a ThermoWorks Thermapen ONE instant read thermometer.
  • I’m using a Thermoworks Smoke X4 internal temperature probe.

Leave on the fat cap, or trim it off? 

Hard exterior fat does not normally render down smoothly. So I’m a huge advocate of getting rid of everything. I know some people leave it all on, others just a bit, some cook with the fat at the bottom to ostensibly preserve the meat, and some cook with the fat on top to melt down and keep the meat moist.

You shouldn’t need to insulate your meat from the bottom if you’re cooking indirectly. I’ll be using a Weber Smokey Mountain, and the water pan serves as a barrier to prevent any direct radiant heat from reaching the surface of whatever I’m smoking. I actually have a custom deflector plate that performs the same thing, but I don’t have to fill it with water during a cook. Bit both preventing the radiant heat, thus the fat cap is required there.

Leaving it on and putting it on top of the cook to melt and keep the meat juicy. It will melt somewhat, but the meat will not absorb any of the melted fat. It will trickle onto the charcoal as it rolls down the outside. So there’s no necessity there either.

I want the taste of my spice to penetrate the meat, so I take off all of the hard exterior fat. I may leave some soft thin fat on since it will render down, but I usually wipe it all up, removing all of the chewy silver skin at the same time.

The ultimate bbq coffee rub

I know a few folks are reading this and are curious about the coffee. I remember being skeptical when I first began using coffee in my meat rubs. I didn’t want my steak to taste like the espresso I had this morning.

It will surprise you that after the meat has been smoked, you will not taste any coffee; it is only an amplifier of what is already there.

Adding this to any sweet or savory spices will only enhance their responses with your cuisine and produce a distinct taste character.

I always suggest weighing out all of your ingredients ahead of time for any BBQ rub, spice, or sauce. It’s not that making a rub is difficult; it’s simply a nice habit to develop.

Mix all of the ingredients well before transferring to a rub shaker to make application simpler. You may also refrigerate any leftover rub in an airtight jar or zip lock bag to keep it fresher for longer. It should keep in the refrigerator for up to six months. However, because of the coffee, I believe that fresh is ideal.

Seasonings are frequently chosen depending on personal choice. My recipe is based on the tastes of six members in my household. Some like sweet, others savory, a few dislike heat, and a few don’t mind it. So I usually do some fine-tuning to get what I consider to be the ideal overall balance.

To that end, if you think my dish is too hot, add more heat; if you think it’s too spicy, reduce the heat.

This rub is fantastic on most meats, including beef, pig, and chicken, and has a lovely savory tang to it.

To fill off what I call a very well balanced rub, combine ground coffee, dark brown sugar, cayenne pepper, garlic, paprika, onion, cumin, and salt.

It could be worth cooking a little extra and having some on hand. It’s also delicious on steak.

Prepping the beef & setting up your smoker

First and foremost, we must season the meat. I usually take any bigger chunks I’m smoking out of the fridge about an hour before smoking them.

I usually apply my rub from about 12 inches above the meat to achieve equal coverage and minimal spice clumping. We can leave it out of the fridge while we prepare our smoker.

Now, I’m going to use a 22 Weber Smokey Mountain for my grill. I’ll be using lump charcoal and the minion approach.

I’ll begin by igniting a half-full chimney starter with lump charcoal, then set it in a well formed in the charcoal ring with unlit charcoal.

I’ll put a few pieces of cherry and pecan wood around the fire charcoal, but without touching it, so it can warm up and burn cleanly without producing any thick white smoke that will impart a harsh flavor to our lamb.

For this cook, I’ve removed the water pan and am using a deflector plate to prevent direct radiant heat from reaching the bottom of the steak. I won’t have to bother about filling up the water pan throughout the cook since I removed it. To minimize time cleaning up after the cook, I’ll place a drip tray on the deflector plate.

If you don’t have a deflector plate, just cover the pan with foil.

Smoking your beef

Once the smoker has reached a steady temperature of 250°F, I’ll lay the beef in the center of the cooking grate and insert an internal meat probe. I’m using the Thermoworks Smoke X4 today.

I’ll let this smoke out for about 4 hours until it reaches an internal temperature of 160F, then wrap it in foil with half a cup of warm beef stock until it probes like a hot knife through butter, which will take another couple of hours and the internal temperature will be between 200F and 210F.

I’ll then unzip the foil and allow the steam escape for approximately 10 minutes before wrapping the beef in old towels and placing it in a refrigerator for two hours.

When the two hours are up, I’ll transfer the liquid and meat to a tray and peel apart. Any bigger bits of fat that did not render down throughout the cooking process should be discarded.

Serving suggestions 

With the leftovers, you could make sandwiches, pies, or even spaghetti. Tacos are my favorite food. When I need a fast and simple supper, I prefer to freeze the beef and then reheat it.

At the bottom of this piece, I’ll offer my taco-making technique.

Even using it as a pasta dish is a great idea.

Storing leftover beef

I’ve already mentioned my favorite way for keeping leftover pork, so we can do the same with beef. I cannot suggest using a vacuum sealer for food enough. Not only does vacuum sealing keep food fresher for longer, but it also takes up far less room in your fridge and freezer.

I began utilizing vacuum sealers because I was tired of seeing waste in my home. Because I cook almost every day, leftovers were not being consumed, and it became a running joke about who would empty the fridge at the end of the week.

So, rather than wasting it, we vacuum sealed it and used it as our lazy night dinner. The evenings we knew we wouldn’t be able to return home and cook a supper.

So we not only witnessed a reduction in food waste, but our food cost also decreased, and we were no longer overflowing our bins at the end of each week. It was amazing to see how much utilizing a vacuum sealer has transformed our lives.

Just remember to let any cooked food cool fully before vacuum sealing it.

Tips for vacuum sealing:

  • To accommodate your family, use kitchen scales and weigh out equal amount sizes.
  • By freezing individual meals for one or two individuals, you may save unnecessary waste. If necessary, you can always grab an additional bag of frozen leftovers.
  • Weigh your leftovers and then package them in separate vacuum bags.
  • In each bag, write the date, weight, and food type. Nothing is worse than playing Russian roulette with a frozen bag of something months later because it wasn’t labeled.

Reheating leftover beef

Nothing is worse than reheating an excellent meal and finding it dry or mushy the second time around.

By vacuum sealing the smoked pulled beef in a bag, you have also sealed in all of the liquids. Those fluids cannot escape until you open the bag; herein is our problem: how to reheat it to the ideal eating temperature.

There’s nothing worse than eating leftovers that make you wish you hadn’t. Especially when it’s something like pulled beef that you’ve spent hours preparing and smoking just to be let down the next day.

When it comes to warming leftover pulled beef, one key element is required: hot water. That’s right, just plain old boiling water. Put a vacuum-sealed bag of pulled beef in boiling water for 5 minutes and you’ll have properly heated, delicious pulled meat.

It may seem too simple, but that’s because there are no secrets or gimmicks involved; just place the sealed bag in boiling water and in 5 minutes you’ll be enjoying pulled beef that has just been torn apart from the smoker.

This time may need to be adjusted for bigger servings; for example, if you had twice or treble the quantity in the bag, you may need to reheat for up to 10 minutes each bag.

Pulled beef tacos

So, now that we’ve heated up our leftover pulled meat, it’s time to make some tacos.

I like making my own spicy sauce. It’s sweet and spicy, a little thicker than most, and has a great creamy texture.

I came up with this recipe while preparing fish tacos, of all things. After some tinkering, I discovered that it worked well on many more than simply fish tacos, and so my creamy spicy sauce was created. I should have dubbed it Schuey’s Taco Sauce. Because it has become my go-to taco sauce.

So we’ll need two teaspoons of Kewpie mayonnaise, one tablespoon of maple syrup, and one tablespoon of your preferred spicy sauce. Mix well and store in a squeezable sauce container for easy usage.

This has a little more kick than most of my sauces and rubs; generally, I try for a happy medium, but I wanted some additional bite in this. If necessary, turn down the heat. If you do, no one will judge you.

Next, start warming up some tortillas in a skillet; we’re not frying them, just warming them up.

Now, top them with some finely sliced lettuce, any lettuce will do, it’s just for some crunch.

Now top with some of that perfectly cooked pulled meat.

Next up, a good squirt of the creamy hot sauce.

If you don’t have a cool drink nearby, go grab one and enjoy the feast that is about to begin.


How long do you smoke pulled beef for?

Preheat your smoker to 250°F when you’re ready. Cook for roughly 3 hours on the grates, spraying with beef broth at least once an hour. This will aid in flavor development and prevent the edges from drying out. Around the 3-hour point, the interior temperature will reach 165°F.

What does coffee rub taste like?

Coffee rubbed steak would have no coffee flavor. Instead, the spice is absorbed into the meat, imparting a somewhat earthy and spicy taste depending on your spice preferences.

What cut of beef for smoked pulled beef?

Chuck roast is often regarded as the finest cut for making pulled beef. Chuck roasts, like the front shoulder of pork (or the pig “butt”), are high in fat, collagen, and marbling since they come from the front shoulder of the cow.

How long to smoke a beef roast for pulled beef?

Cook the chuck roasts until they reach an internal temperature of 165oF on the smoker. This takes me around 3 hours on average, but the overall duration depends on your smoker, the weather, and the size of your chuck roasts. While the roasts are smoking, make a spritzer with beef broth and spicy sauce.

Can you overcook pulled beef?

“If you’re cooking meat, it’s done when it’s fork-tender, which means you can cut into it easily with a fork,” she explains. overdone meat will be “tough and dry,” and overdone veggies will be mushy.

How do you smoke beef so it falls apart?

Here are the top recommendations for a delicious, fall-apart smoked chuck roast: Before placing the roast in the smoker, allow it to come to room temperature. Smoke at 225°F for 4-5 hours, or until the interior temperature reaches 140°-150°F. Every hour, spritz the roast with apple juice or apple cider vinegar.

Does coffee tenderize beef?

Coffee’s acidity levels mimic tannins in wine, allowing for taste amplification. But it does not end there. A coffee rub on steak may also work as a tenderizer, softening the meat and increasing its moisture content by forming a flavor-sealed crust.

Why use coffee as a rub?

What effect does coffee have in a rub? Coffee in a rub makes a fantastic crust on any meat you use it for, allowing it to sear nicely and transmit the rich tastes of the spice rub without dominating its original flavor. Coffee, because of its acidity, also functions as a meat tenderizer.

Does coffee rub meat have caffeine?

steak with coffee smeared on it? In truth, the quantity of caffeine that a coffee rub will impart to steak is minuscule.Coffee, unless decaffeinated, includes caffeine by nature, which prompts the question: how much caffeine will one take after eating rubbed steak?

What is a chuck roast called in Canada?

Canada Grade AAA Boneless Blade Eye (Chuck) Roast (Avg 3lbs)


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