7 epic cookout challenges from great American chefs

Pig butts

Every backyard chef needs his Everest. Or his K2. Or his Chogolisa, which is 36th on the list of world's highest mountains, but still really, really high. We got chefs from around the country to give us some of their most insanely involved meat dishes -- hunks of protein you'll be spending anywhere from 14 hours to 3 days marinating, brining, or slow cooking to perfection... and about five minutes devouring with dozens of your closest/largest friends.

Whole Beef Brisket


Serious Barbecue Cookbook
Los Angeles, CA
Chef Adam Perry Lang

LA barbecue by way of New Mexico, this brisket's paste, seasoning blend, wrapping mixture, and finishing sauce all contribute to its very long, worthwhile process. "I call it 'get a book' brisket, because it’ll have you cooking for a long time," says Perry Lang. Total Prep Time: 13 Hours.

See the full recipe here

Big Bob Gibson


Big Bob Gibson
Monroe, NC
Chef Chris Lilly

Things get serious when the meat syringes come out -- the secret to this hunk is injecting it with apple juice and sugar before throwing it in the smoker until it's achieved the state of preparation technically known as "meat pulls off the bone". Total Prep Time: 14-16 hours.

See the full recipe here

Woodshed Smokehouse


Woodshed Smokehouse
Fort Worth, TX
Chef Tim Love

Iron Chef-dominating restaurateur Tim Love preps all ten pounds of his Smoked Beef Shin with a rub of cayenne pepper plus his signature Wild Game Rub -- a mixture of spices such as cumin, rosemary, chile powder and thyme. Total Prep Time: 18 hours.

See the full recipe here

BBQ Beef Adobo


Jeepney Filipino Gastropub
New York, NY
Chef Miguel Trinidad 

Calling for a mere 10 pounds of meat, Jeepney’s flank steak recipe gets marinade-alicious for a full day before even seeing flame. The cook time is significantly speedier, but you're still going to want to snack on 8-10 bags of Combos while you're waiting. Total Prep Time: 27-51 hours.

See the full recipe here

Bone Lick BBQ


Bone Lick BBQ
Atlanta, GA
Chef Mike LaSage

Meet a meat masterpiece: a quail stuffed inside a Cornish hen, inside of a chicken, inside of a duck, inside of a turkey, with various layers of stuffing between each bird. LaSage then takes the whole thing, wraps it in bacon, and stuffs it inside a suckling pig. Hear that? That's the sound of America's collective BMI going up 20 points.  Total Prep Time: 48 hours.

See the full recipe here



Dallas, TX
Chef Andrew Dilda

Barter’s Executive Chef puts a very special ingredient in his Pork Shank: Coca-Cola. "It brings a unique sweetness and color to the pork. Plus, the phosphoric acid helps break down the tough connective tissue." Dishes like this are why Dilda runs Barter town. Total Prep Time: 58-70 hours.

See the full recipe here



McClure's Barbecue
New Orleans, LA
Chef Neil McClure

Preparation for McClure’s famous Shoulder begins by trimming the excess fat off the pork butts and submerging them in a brine including sugar, salt, soy, orange juice, and root beer. Not enough flavor? He then injects them with a Mott's-ly brew of North Carolina-style vinegar sauce and apple juice. Total Prep Time: About 3 days.

See the full recipe here, and consider hiring a meat sherpa.