Sanctioned Competition Rules

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PURPOSE: Lone Star Barbecue Society is a nonprofit organization that provides support for charitable and educational purposes. We foster and promote the furthering appreciation of the State food of Texas, Barbecue. To sanction competition barbecue cook-offs and provide fair rules and fair judging for all contestants. These rules and regulations are set forth by the Lone Star Barbecue Society Board of Directors.

SANCTIONED COOK-OFF: A cook-off event with at least 10 teams, having paid the required fees, and approved by the board will be a sanctioned cook-off. Any event that fails to meet the sanctioning requirements for two consecutive years may not be eligible for resanctioning.

COOKS MEETING: The cooks meeting will be held at the discretion of the Judging coordinator and Promoter usually at 7:00 pm Friday Evening. The Judging Coordinator will go over all LSBS contest rules, turn in times and quantity of each product. All head cooks or a representative of the cooker must attend. Any questions you may have will be answered by the Judging Coordinator.

COOKED ON SITE: All meat will be brought to the cooking site raw with no premarinating, presoaking, or pre-spicing prior to start time. Pre-trimming of competition products is allowed and may be removed from the store packaging; unless there is a health department rule requiring that all products must be in store packaging when the product is inspected. If this is the case, it must be made clear on the cook-off flyer and registration form. Once a team and their meats have arrived at the event, the meats are not allowed to be removed from the competition grounds. Meat will be prepared from scratch within the constraints of the competition site. Cooks may begin preparing their products after registration is completed, or 6:00 PM Friday, whichever time comes first.

SANITATION: Cooks are to prepare and cook in as sanitary a manner as is possible. It is recommended that all cooks, prior to handling the products, wash their hands, use gloves, and avoid cross contamination. Cooking conditions are subject to inspection. The head cook will be required to address any unsanitary practices identified.

BBQ PITS: Pit will be any commercial or homemade, trailered or un-trailered pit or smoker. A BBQ Pit may include gas or electricity for starting the combustion of wood or wood products but can NOT be used as a heat source for cooking. Electrical accessories such as spits, augers or force drafts are permitted.

ENTRIES PER PIT: LSBS allows 2 head cooks on a given pit. Multiple entriesin the same category by the same cook, or multiple entries from the same piece of meat shall not be allowed. The head cook of the team registered for the event must be at least 18 years old and present at the event.

JUDGING TRAYS: All sanctioned categories will be submitted in identical containers supplied by the Judging Coordinator. For chicken, a 13”X9” tray and for the other meats a 9”x9” hinged foam tray. Trays will have a matched pair of blue identically numbered theater tickets affixed to the tray, and a piece of foil for each container. Trays for unsanctioned categories will be marked for that category or have a different color ticket. Each Cook will be instructed to PRINT the head cook’s first and last name in ink on the blank side of the ticket when picking up their trays. The head cook’s name must be the same as the name on the tray pickup form. This ticket will be used to match the ticket on the winning box. Only the name printed on the winning ticket will be entered on the winner’s sheet, by the Judging Coordinator.

TRAY CONTENTS: LSBS requires that the Judging Coordinator advise all cooks of the exact quantities and cuts of meat that will be placed in the judging trays. This will be announced at the Cook’s Meeting. The Judging Coordinator or designated representative will inspect all trays at the time of turn-in to assure compliance with the turn-in criteria. If the contents are not as per the sanctioning rules, or appear to be marked, the person turning in the tray will be given the opportunity to correct it. Once a product has been accepted, it will go to a judging table. All meat may be cooked with sauces and/or other liquids, but once the cooking is complete, sauces and/or liquids may not be added in the tray. Cooks will be required to remove excessive liquids. Each tray will include one sheet of foil placed flat (without folds) under the contents in that tray. No garnishes or condiments are allowed.

TRAY DISQUALIFICATION: If the contents are not as per our rules, or appears to be marked, the person turning in the tray will be given the opportunity to correct it. Once a product has been accepted, it will go to a judging table. Once placed on a judging table, the product can only be disqualified, at the discretion of the Judging Coordinator, if it is raw or unsanitary.

TEAM DISQUALIFICATION: Any remarks or signs against race/ethnic origin,religion, or the threat or act of violence will result in the team removal from the cookoff premises.


* There will be no more than four (4) sanctioned meat categories three (3) of which will be Brisket, Pork Spare Ribs, and Chicken.

Beans: Will be started at the cooking site from dry pinto beans. Cooks may cook with condiments but when turned in Nothing is to be included in the bean cup larger than a bean. The entry will be disqualified if a tasting judge finds anything in the cup larger than a bean. Bean entries will NOT be inspected at turn in. Chicken. The cook will turn in two halves of chicken with meat side up, not dis-jointed containing skin, breast portion, leg, thigh and wing (with or without wing tip). The chicken must be arranged in the tray where the tabs can be secured and the lid stays closed. Cornish game hens will be disqualified. Pork Spare Ribs. The cook will turn in seven (7) individual pork spare ribs, meat side up. St Louis style trim is allowed. Starting at the hinge of the lid, place the ribs parallel to the hinge working forward until the bottom is filled (the bones on this row must be the same direction all to the left or all to the right). Start a top row at the hinge placing the ribs parallel to the hinge until the required amount is in the tray (the bones on this row must be the same direction all to the left or all to the right). Ribs may be offset in the box as long as the tabs close and lock the lid in place. Larger cookoffs will require (9) ribs. Baby back/loin ribs will be disqualified. Brisket. Cook’s will turn in seven (7) full slices, approximately 1/4 to 3/8-inch-thick. Blocking is allowed for presentation purposes. Starting at the hinge of the lid, place the slices parallel to the hinge working your way forward. If sliced too thick or too thin the cook will be required to correct it. Large cook offs will require (9) slices. Pork. Cook will turn in pulled or shredded from a pork butt /pork shoulder.

Recognized LSBS Meats and Specialty Meats:

  • Beef Brisket
  • Goat
  • Pork Spare Ribs
  • Rattlesnake
  • Chicken
  • Bison Brisket
  • Pork Butt / Shoulder.
  • Wild Hog

OTHER CATEGORIES: The Promoter shall advise all cookers in advance of any additional sanctioned categories.

TURN-IN TIMES: All categories will have a 20-minute window, 10 minutes before to 10 minutes after the stated turn in times. Competitions with less than 65 teams, Standard turn in times for sanctioned categories will be 10:30 AM Beans, 12:00 PM Chicken, 1:30 PM Ribs, 3:00 PM Brisket. Unsanctioned categories can be anytime on Friday or prior to bean turn in on Saturday. Competitions having 66 + teams, the turn in intervals will increase to 2 hours beginning at 10:30 AM with beans.Brisketis always the last categoryturned in. LSBSofficials can make adjustment to these times as needed based on the number of entries, additional sanctioned categories, or special circumstances.

TASTE JUDGES: In order that the products receive the best possible scores, LSBS ask that ALL Taste Judges comply with the following guidelines:

 All taste judges must be at least 18 years of age.

 They must be able to follow all the Judging Coordinator’s instructions and understand the scoring procedure.

 Be able to see, cut, and taste the product on their own and not impede the judging process.

It is the promoter’s responsibility to get all the judges seated at the table before the tray turn in begins. LSBS recommends the promoter have at least five (5) judges per table, but no more than seven (7). Head cooks and team members are prohibited from judging but are allowed to watch the judging processes. The approved LSBS Judging sheets must be used. Taste Judges will be instructed on how to pass the trays, fill out the score sheets, usage of pallet cleansers, and the correct use of the knives and forks. There should be no more than twenty (20) trays per table.

AWARDS: Winners for each category will be announced starting with all non-sanctioned categories followed by the sanctioned categories in the order they were turned in. The ticket numbersfor the top 10 scores in each sanctioned category will be announced and the winners recognized. The promoter may recognizemore than the top 10 but only the top 10 will receive points. Afterthe announcement of the top 10 in each sanctioned category, the final table ticket numbers will be announced and/or displayed at the discretion of the promoter. After the winners of each category have been recorded, the Judging Coordinator will tally the scores to determine the top 5 along with the Grand and Reserve Champions. Events with a Semi Finals table will have the tickets from that table displayed after awards. Due to Sanitary reasons, only the lids of the top 10 in each sanctioned categorywill be taken to awards. When claiming the award, the ticket matching the called number must be presented for verification.The name on the ticket will be recorded on the winner’ssheet.Copies of the ticket number, photographs, etc. will not be accepted. If unable to produce the original matching ticket, the place will be declared as unclaimed. Ticket holders of unclaimed places have until the end of the announcement of final table brisket to claim the place. If the original matching ticket is presented after that time, the place will remain unclaimed.

TIE BREAKER: In the event of a tie in the top 10 overall, the ties will be broken using the score on the meat in reverse order of turn in. Normal progression is as follows: Brisket (Extra Sanctioned Meat) Ribs Chicken

Failure to follow these rules may result in disqualification.

1st Annual
Southern Smoke N Sip|Sanctioned Competition Rules

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