pulled beef sandwhich

Smoked Chuck Roast for Pulled Beef Sandwich

If you’re looking for something besides traditional BBQ to cook this weekend, I have a great recipe for you today. I’m using Beef Chuck Roast cooked low and slow; then I’m making one mouth-watering sandwich.

Chuck Roast is one cut of meat that most people don’t associate with BBQ. Similar to brisket, chuck roast needs to cook for a long time to become tender.

It’s made up of different groups of the shoulder and contains a good bit of fat and collagen. This cut stands up well to long cooks and the fat melts away leaving moist, flavor-packed meat.

I bought 2 chuck roasts weighing 3lbs each. Chuck is considered a lesser cut of beef, so it’s common to find it under $3 per lb. This means you can feed a lot of people some good food without spending a lot.


Much like a pork butt or brisket it takes a while to cook a chuck roast. You want it to be close to falling apart in the end, so it takes some time. You can plan on a 6 hour cook easy depending on the size of the roast.

For this recipe I’m shooting for more of a beefy flavor than typical bbq, so the seasoning I use is savory based. I take my AP seasoning (Salt, Pepper, Garlic) and add a few things to it.

  • 1/2 cup Salt
  • 1/4 cup Garlic
  • 1/4 cup Onion Powder
  • 1/4 cup Chili Powder
  • 1/8 cup Black Pepper
  • 1 tea Ground Parsley
  • 1 tea Ground Oregano

Season all sides of the chuck roast with this mixture (this recipe is more than enough seasoning for 2 chuck roasts).


Now it’s time to light the fire. I’m looking for 250 degrees with a little mild pecan smoke for these chucks. Once the smoker is up to temperature, place the roasts directly on the grate and close the lid.

I’m using my Yoder (set & forget) today but any cooker will work as long as you can regulate the heat.


After 1.5 hours flip both roasts over and continue smoking. Keep adding pecan chunks as necessary and maintain the temperature at 250 degrees.


At the 3 hour mark the chuck roasts should be ready to pan. Take a thermometer reading here; it should read between 140-150 degrees. The meat won’t take any more smoke at this point, so it’s best to get it covered.

For these chuck roasts, I use a large steam pan to hold them both. The meat needs some additional liquid as well, so I pour in 32oz of warmed beef broth. If you want to change it up a little substitute red wine or even a dark beer, go for it.


Cover the pan with aluminum foil and place it back on the smoker still holding 250 degrees.

You’re looking at another 2-3 hours at least, so keep an eye on the pit and add fuel as needed.

You want to go more by the internal temp that the time – and the final target temperature is 195-200 internal. It’s not the end of the world if you overshoot the target temp on this cut of meat. There’s plenty of liquid in the pan to add moisture and you want it falling apart. This beef is for pulling, so we want the collagen and fat holding it together to completely dissolve.

When the thermometer is reading 195 and it feels like a knife sliding into hot butter, you know it’s done. Remove the pan from the smoker and let the steam escape for about 5 minutes. Rest the meat for at least an hour (I go for 2) before breaking it down. Even after two hours it will still be so hot you’ll need to wear hand savers and gloves.


When it’s done properly this meat will practically pull itself. Separate any fat that didn’t render and pull the pieces into small strands. If you don’t want to shred it by hand you can always use a couple forks or a pork puller… it will flake right apart after it cools a little.

I like to reserve the liquid from the large pan. That beef broth is rightly seasoned after you’ve cooked the chuck roasts in it. You can use it to add a little extra moisture to your pulled meat. Just ladle some of the liquid over the pulled meat… and you’re ready to serve.


Now, you can just serve this pulled beef the way it is. And it is some good stuff. But I like to make a pulled beef sandwich. It’s something great to serve for tailgates and football parties because it’s different and delicious.


For my Pulled Beef Sandwich here’s what you’ll need:

Pulled Beef
Onion buns
Caramelized Onions (recipe on the right side)
Horseradish Mayo*

*Horseradish Mayo Recipe
– 16oz Mayo
– 6oz Horseradish Cream Sauce
Mix together and place into a squeeze bottle.

All you do to make this sandwich is to split the onion roll and pile on a heaping serving of pulled beef. Then I just top with caramelized onions and Mayo.

It’s easy and folks go crazy over it. You get a little sweetness from the onions – and the horseradish mayo has just enough of a kick without being overpowering.

Give this recipe a try, your friends will thank you for it.

Malcom Reed
Connect on Facebook
Follow me on Twitter
Subscribe to my YouTube Channel
Find me on Google+
Follow me on Instagram

Buy Killer Hogs Products Here

Comments 37

  1. Love what you’re doing man! When you say let the meat rest for up to 2 hours, do you mean to leave it wrapped in foil? Thanks again for all the awesome recipes!

    1. Post
  2. Thank you so much for your recipe this is my first chuck roast that I’ve ever done. My truck right now actually is on the grill cooking away but with your method I am positive it is going to come out great again thank you so much. Marc

  3. Thanks Malcolm
    Everything i make the way you describe comes out amazing.
    Im making the korean ribs tomorrow and the smoked chuck roast next.
    I recommend your site to all the backyard cookers here on long island


  4. What kind of garlic do you use for your seasoning mix? Garlic salt or garlic powder I’m guessing? Love the website; keep the recipes coming!

    1. Post
      1. You could make a killing off those cookbooks .it needs to be a step by step .
        Keep making videos thank you

  5. Hi Malcolm, I tried this recipe for the time and temp suggested on my GMG pellet grill. It looked and smelled great but would not pull. It was very tough. Later I boiled it in the juice thinking it wasn’t done in spite of reaching 200 on the grill. It then was tender enough to eat but still wouldn’t pull. Any ideas on what I did wrong? I have done pulled pork butts on the grill that turned out great.

    1. Post

      With beef you have to take it until it’s fork tender – if that means taking it to 203 or even higher – that is what it takes. Every cut of beef is different and sometimes you get a really tough cut.

  6. Malcom, you are a cooking genius. Use your site as my go to reference to produce excellent food on my grill and cooker. Always rave reviews from whoever I feed and I’ve served over 100 with your pulled pork recipe. Thanks for contributions, always easy and straight forward. Refer everyone to you when asked how to cook with fire.

  7. Followed recipe as stated, came out awesome. Served on toasted onion bun with provolone and horseradish sauce. Sprinkled bun with beef pan juice. My wife and daughter’s want it again soon. Thanks for the recipe. Rich in Seal Beach

  8. Looks like a great recipe that I intend to try soon. I don’t see the recipe for the caramelized onion that is supposed to be to the right? I may have missed it? Any help finding it would be appreciated.


    1. Post
  9. Hey Malcom! Thanks for the great teachings!! I am cooking these on a WSM 14.5 a foil pan does not fit…can I boat wrap this with the beef broth and get the same results?

    1. Post
  10. LOVE this recipe Malcolm (and your AP rub)! When determining how much meat to use, what do you use as a rule of thumb for serving larger groups? How many oz. per person?

    1. Post
  11. Just popping in to say I’ve done this recipe twice and it’s outstanding. Second time I added some melted pimento cheese (for fun, not because it was necessary). One of Malcolm’s best!!!

  12. Malcolm,
    You put the meat into a pan with broth and cover at the right temp as I do…..and you do the onions separately….I have found that if I put the sliced onions into the bottom of the pan below the roasts, add the both, cover and finish, I wind up with nicely braised onions and the roasts which have taken on the added flavor of the onions…..hard to suggest anything to the master because you have been my mentor from day one…but have you ever done it that way and what do you think.?

  13. Great, I made this recipe several times.
    Sometimes, I need to start the day before when I use a large amount of beef ( 8 pounds or more) or if I need it in the morning.
    Too short of time to smoke it on the same day.
    What is the best way to keep the beef till next day or even later? Pulled already?
    And just warm it up again till 200Gr?
    Thank you,
    Jeff from the Netherlands

    1. Post
  14. Why don’t you have a cook book my man? I would love one for quick reference… rather than having to refer to the videos every time! Laminated pages would be awesome.

    1. Post
  15. I’ve never missed with one of your recipes. The was not good for us. 4.1 Chuck Roast cooked exactly as described in your recipe on my Ironwood 650. 200 at 6. 25 hrs. Pulled at 200 based on Traeger probe, verified b Thermapen MK4. Let rest covered in foil pan with broth2 hours.. Tougher than a boot. Could barely rip apart with insulated gloves or bear claws. Flavor great., appearance great tenderness zero. USDA choice meat from BJ’s. Any advice?

    1. Post
    2. I pull at 210 making sure the all the connective tissue is broken down sufficiently. If it’s a really tough cut I may even go to 215.

      Everyone loves and Malcolm makes me look like a cooking genius!

      Thanks Malcolm!

  16. Malcom,
    Love your recipes and videos. Every one I’ve done has been a success until this one. Followed the recipe exactly as presented on my Ironwood 650. 4 pound chuck roast. 6 hours 15 minutes cook. Rested in covered foil pan with juice for 2 hours. When I went to pull I could barely pull apart using bear claws or gloved hands. Looked great, flavor was great but tougher than a boot! Any ideas what I might have done wrong or how to avoid in the future? Thanks!

    1. Post

      It just didn’t get cooked long enough. With big cuts of beef like this, you have to go by feel as well as internal temps – and forget about times. You want it to feel like butter when you probe it. You might have to take it to 200 or maybe 202 or even 208 for the internal… but when it feels like probing butter you will know it’s finally tender and ready to pull.

  17. Made 5 roasts in smoker today using your step by step instructions. They turned out perfect!! Great flavor!! I was leery at 1st but you made a believer out of me. Thanks for sharing, definitely going to be trying your other recipes.

  18. WOW!! Made 5 roasts today using your step by step instructions, they turned out perfect. Great flavor!! I was leery at 1st but you made a believer out of me with your recipe. Looking forward to trying some of your other recipes in my smoker . Thanks for sharing.

  19. Made this today. Will be making it again, very soon. The flavour combinations of the beef, horseradish mayo, onions, and dipping sauce is just fantastic!

  20. When you talk about having a “tough cut “, are there things to look for in the cuts of meat, prior to buying, that can help prevent this?

    1. Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.