Skip to Content

Poor Man’s Burnt Ends Recipe

Poor man’s burnt ends are just as delicious as the traditional burnt ends made from a beef brisket. With this recipe, I’ll be using chuck roast to produce these lip-smacking BBQ bites!

poor man's burnt ends

I know what you are thinking..chuck roast? Yes, this less expensive meat will come out super tender and tasty with its BBQ smokey flavor. This recipe is perfect if you are craving burnt ends but don’t want to spend money on a beef brisket.

I happen to have a large chuck roast laying in the fridge and with summer winding down, I’ll use my smoker for one last time this year.

Let’s get cooking!

What Makes A Good Burnt Ends?

A good tasting burnt ends are a combination of the right amount of bark (char), tender meat, and savory barbecue sauce and rub.

The char or the crust forming on the exterior of the meat must carmelize properly to create that burnt and sweet deliciousness. Once you take one bite, you’ll be craving for more just like candy.

While the exterior of the meat is half the experience when biting into these burnt ends, once you break into the inside meat you’ll taste the most tender meat with an incredible smokey taste. The fat melts down into the meat from smoking the meat for several hours giving you that unforgettable tasty bite.

Of course like any other smoked or barbeque recipes, these poor man’s burnt ends would not be complete without the right combination of BBQ rub and a good coat of delicious barbecue sauce.

smoked poor mans burnt ends recipe

How To Make The Most Tender Burnt Ends

The secret to incredibly tender burnt ends is slow and low heat cooking. There is no shortcut to this. Yes, there are other burnt ends recipes that require only cooking in the oven but you won’t get that intense smoke flavor and meat tenderness you get with a smoker.

No matter what kind of meat, smoking the meat for several hours is the only way to get this type of tenderness result. If you want to do this right, fire up your smoker and get your ingredients ready!

How To Make Poor Man’s Burnt Ends Recipe

As I mentioned earlier, start up your smoker at low temperature. This is important.

While you are waiting for your smoker to heat up, it is time to prep the chuck roast. I always put a decent amount of my favorite BBQ rub coating all around the chuck roast. You can use any BBQ rub that you like.

Set the heavy coated chuck roast in the smoker and let it smoke until it reaches the target internal temperature.

Chef Tip: Use a meat thermometer to precisely know that your meat is cooked. This is the best way to gauge if the meat is cooked is by looking at the internal temperature.

When it is done, it is just a matter of slicing the chuck roast into bite-size pieces and adding some BBQ sauce and rub. Let it cook some more in the smoker.

The wait is worth it. These incredibly delicious smokey meat candy will satisfy your burnt ends craving.

smoked chuck roast burnt ends recipe

poor mans burnt ends
5 from 1 vote

Poor Man's Burnt Ends Recipe

Try this easy burnt ends recipe using chuck roast.

Course Main Course
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 hours
Total Time 5 hours 10 minutes


  • BBQ Rub
  • BBQ Sauce
  • 3 lbs Chuck Roast


  1. Set your smoker to low heat at 225°F.

  2. Sprinkle a generous amount of your favorite BBQ rub all around the chuck roast. 

  3. Place the chuck roast into the smoker and let it smoke until internal temperature reaches 185°F. 

  4. Once meat is done, pull it out of the smoker and let it rest for 30 minutes. 

  5. Slice chuck roast into small bite size cube pieces.

  6. Place sliced meat in a foil pan and add your favorite BBQ sauce and rub. Just add enough sauce to lightly coat the meat and sprinkle some more BBQ rub.

  7. Place the meat back in the smoker at 250°F for 1 hour.


What BBQ rub do you recommend?

There are many BBQ rubs out there you can use. Use whatever rub that satisfies your taste buds. I specifically use Hardcore Carnivore Black Rub for this recipe.

Can I make my own BBQ rub?

Yes, you can. Here’s a BBQ rub that I make all the time:

1 tbsp Cayenne Pepper
3 tbsp Onion Powder
3 tbsp Garlic Powder
3 tbsp Ground Cumin
6 tbsp Black Pepper
1/2 cup Salt
1/4 cup Paprika
1/3 cup Chili Powder
1 cup Granulated Sugar
1 cup Brown Sugar

What BBQ sauce did you use?

I used Sweet Baby Ray’s Honey BBQ sauce. You can use any thick and sweet BBQ sauce.

How many hours did it take for the internal temperature to reach 185°F?

This will depend on the size of the meat. It took mine about 4 hours but don’t gauge it by cooking time. I highly recommend using a meat thermometer so you can confidently know that the meat is cooked.

Can I cook this in the oven?

Yes, you can cook burnt ends in the oven.  Set your oven at 275°F and roast for 3 hours.  Raise the temperature to 350°F and add sauce the last 30 minutes of roasting.

I recommend cooking this recipe in a smoker to get that intense BBQ smoke flavor and meat tenderness.

What sides do you serve with burnt ends?

I always like pairing these with baked beans. You can also serve burnt ends with fried corn fritters, baked mac and cheese, cornbread, or biscuit.

How many calories are in burnt ends?

In a 6oz serving of burnt ends, there are about 500 calories.

Recipe Rating


Thursday 8th of August 2019

Holy. Cow. YUM. Made this in the oven because I have neither a smoker or a bbq. I used Gustus Vitae’s Chuck’s Dust for my run, cooked on 350 for 3 hours, let rest, cubed, and tossed in a smidge of g Hughes Sugar Free Hickory and then back in a 425 oven for 25 minutes to get the outsides the ‘burnt ends’ feel. This was amazing, thank you for the recipe!


Monday 14th of January 2019

I’m going to try this in the oven on Sunday.

Do I cook 3 hours 275, rest 30 minutes and cut in pieces, then, sauce and back in at 350 temp for the 30 minutes? Thank you!

Charles Willard

Tuesday 15th of January 2019

Yes, that is correct.


Thursday 3rd of January 2019

Can I do this recipe on my Pit Boss 700 pellet smoker. Are the temps the same in the time

Charles Willard

Thursday 3rd of January 2019

I have not used a pellet smoker before but as long as the temperature stays consistent then cooking time and temp should be the same.