Welcome to my food blog, where I share with you the secrets of cooking the perfect brisket. A smoked brisket is a staple of Texas BBQ, and rightly so, as it’s a cut of meat that, when prepared correctly, can be incredibly tender, juicy, and flavorful. In this recipe, we’ll be using an electric smoker to smoke our brisket to perfection, but don’t worry if you don’t have one, as I’ll also provide tips for using a charcoal smoker or pellet grill.
Choosing the right brisket
Before you can start cooking your brisket, you need to choose the right cut of meat. The whole packer brisket, which includes the flat and the point, is the best cut for smoking. When shopping for your brisket, look for one that has a thickness of at least 1 inch and a weight of around 10-12 lbs. You should also pay attention to the fat cap and the connective tissue, as these are important factors that will affect the end result.
Preparing the brisket
Once you have your brisket, it’s time to prepare it for the smoker. Start by trimming the excess fat from the fat cap and removing any silver skin. Then, mix together your dry rub, which should include kosher salt, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, and any other seasonings of your personal preference. Rub the brisket with olive oil, then coat it generously with the dry rub. Wrap the brisket tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4-5 hours or overnight.
Preparing the smoker
When it’s time to smoke the brisket, preheat your smoker to 225 degrees F and add your wood chunks. Apple wood is a great choice for smoking brisket, but you can use any type of wood that you like. If using an electric smoker, fill the water tray with apple cider vinegar, which will help keep the meat moist during the long smoke.
Smoking the brisket
Place the brisket in the smoker with the fat side up, and insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the meat, being careful not to touch any bone. Close the lid and let the brisket smoke for the first 4-5 hours, until it reaches an internal temperature of 160-170 degrees F.
Wrapping the brisket
After the first 4-5 hours of smoking, it’s time to wrap the brisket in aluminum foil or pink butcher paper. This will help keep the meat moist and tender during the rest of the cooking process. You can also add a little bit of apple cider vinegar or beef broth to the foil or paper to add some extra flavor.
Continuing the cooking process
Place the wrapped brisket back in the smoker, with the fat side down this time. You can also use the Texas Crutch method, which involves wrapping the brisket in foil and then placing it in a cooler or oven to continue cooking. This will help speed up the cooking time and ensure a juicy brisket.
Checking the internal temperature
Continue smoking the brisket until it reaches an internal temperature of 195-205 degrees F. This can take anywhere from 8-12 hours, depending on the size of your brisket and the heat source you’re using. Be patient, as slow cooking is the best way to get the best brisket.
Resting and serving the brisket
Once the brisket reaches the desired internal temperature, remove it from the smoker and let it rest for at least 30 minutes. This will allow the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, resulting in a juicy and tender brisket. After the resting period, slice the brisket against the grain and serve it with your favorite BBQ sauce or on its own. Don’t forget to add some delicious sides like green beans, mashed potatoes, or Texas toast.
Final thoughts: Remember that cooking a perfect brisket is not an exact science and requires some trial and error. Don’t be discouraged if your first time smoking a brisket doesn’t turn out as you expected. Adjust your cooking process and try again the next time. With patience and practice, you’ll be able to master the art of smoking a brisket and impress your family and friends with your delicious smoked brisket recipe. And if you’re a fan of this recipe, be sure to check out my guide for How to Cook Fall Apart Sirloin Tip Roast as well.
- 1 10-12 pound beef brisket
- 1/2 cup kosher salt
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup chili powder
- 1/4 cup paprika
- 1/4 cup garlic powder
- 1/4 cup onion powder
- 2 tablespoons black pepper
- 2 tablespoons cumin
- 2 tablespoons dry mustard
- 2 tablespoons dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 cup beef broth
- Wood chips (hickory or oak)
- Mix together the kosher salt, brown sugar, chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, cumin, dry mustard, dried thyme, and cayenne pepper to create the dry rub.
- Trim any excess fat from the brisket, leaving a thin layer on top. Pat the brisket dry with paper towels.
- Generously rub the dry rub all over the brisket, making sure to coat it on all sides. Place the brisket in a large plastic bag and let it marinate in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours, or overnight.
- Soak the wood chips in water for at least 30 minutes before smoking the brisket.
- Preheat your Masterbuilt smoker to 225°F. Once the smoker is heated up, add the soaked wood chips to the chip tray.
- Place the brisket on the smoker rack, fat-side up. Pour the beef broth into the drip tray to prevent the brisket from drying out.
- Smoke the brisket for 1 hour per pound, or until the internal temperature reaches 195°F.
- Once the brisket is done, remove it from the smoker and let it rest for at least 30 minutes before slicing.
- Slice the brisket against the grain and serve with your favorite BBQ sauce or other side dishes.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1400Total Fat: 86gSaturated Fat: 33gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 41gCholesterol: 481mgSodium: 2873mgCarbohydrates: 17gFiber: 3gSugar: 8gProtein: 133g