Planning production at a barbecue joint is practically an art form. Pitmasters aim to serve fresh meat everyday, so they have to balance smoking enough product to meet demand without ending up with tons of leftovers.
Jim Foss, pitmaster and co-owner of Smokehouse Live in Leesburg, Va. says it's a double-edged sword. "The proteins we use are high-quality meats, but smoked meats start to lose moisture after a day or two," he explains. "It would still taste good the next day, but not ‘our’ good."
Thankfully, there's a delicious way to correct for the problem of having a little extra meat at the end of the day. That’s why pulled pork, brisket ends, or spare ribs end up in baked beans, on top of nachos, or inside a sandwich.
This practice is fairly common at barbecue places because it’s a tasty way to help the restaurant’s bottom line while reducing food waste. Here are a few other spots that use surplus meats to trick out everything from side dishes to sandwiches.