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Texas Brisket on peach paper, sliced with slices of bread, cheese, pickles and onions around.
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5 from 24 votes

Texas Smoked Brisket Recipe

This Texas Smoked Brisket uses simple ingredients, but the process used creates meat so tender it will melt in your mouth. Apply a simple rub and let your smoker do the work!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time17 hrs
Resting Time1 hr
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Diet: Gluten Free
Servings: 10
Calories: 865kcal
Author: Serene

Ingredients

  • 12-18 lb whole packer brisket

Rub

  • ¼ cup coarse salt
  • ¼ cup coarse black pepper 16 mesh ground
  • 1 tbsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tbsp granulated onion
  • 1 tsp chipotle chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground coriander

Instructions

  • Trim the Brisket: Trim the brisket directly from the fridge, cold brisket it easier to trim. Set the brisket in front of you meat side up, fat side down. Remove the large hard piece of fat that separates the point from the fat, trim this down until it is smooth between the point and the flat. Remove any silver skin or excess hard fat from the flat muscle. Trim the thin corner of the flat, this will dry out during cooking since it’s so thin. Flip the brisket over to the fat side and trim the fat down to 1/4 inch thickness. Be careful not to cut down into the meat.
  • Prepare the rub: add the ingredients for the rub into a small bowl. Stir to combine, then add into a large shaker, or use a spoon to evenly spread the rub all over the brisket, both sides.
  • Preheat the Smoker: Preheat your smoker to 225℉ using Oak or a Traeger Texas Beef Blend. 
  • Smoke: Place the brisket on the smoker, fat side down (my preference because it helps the bark develop nicely over the top) and with the flat (the thin portion) furthest from the heat source. Place the point closest to the heat source. Insert a probe thermometer to monitor the internal temperature, place this in the thickest part of the meat. Close the lid and smoke until the internal temperature reaches 165℉, replacing wood pellets or chips as needed. Takes 6-8 hours. (DO NOT open the smoker the first 2 hours of the cook, this is when the meat will absorb the most smoke flavor).
  • Wrap: Once the brisket reaches 165℉, carefully remove the brisket using gloves (it will be hot) and place on two sheets of overlapped peach butcher paper, place the brisket fat side up. Wrap the brisket by folding the paper over the top of the brisket nice and tight, then fold the edges in and fold the brisket over twice.
  • Continue Smoking: Place the brisket back into the smoker, with the seam side of the wrap facing down to keep it nice and tight. Place your thermometer probe back into the meat, it can go right through the paper, it’s fine. And continue smoking until the brisket reaches an internal temperature of 203℉.  This will take another 6-8 hours.
  • Remove: Remove the brisket from the smoker and place on a large baking sheet to let it rest for at least 1 hour before slicing and serving.
  • Rest: If needed you can let the brisket rest for longer, wrap in towels and place in a cooler, it will stay hot for another 6 hours using this method.
  • Slice: slice the point and the flat against the grain, pay attention because the direction will change. Easiest method is to cut the point and the flat apart from one another, then cut them individually into slices. (some slices will have the meat grain going in both directions)
  • Serve: for a true Texas BBQ experience serve with slices of white bread, sliced cheddar cheese, sliced dill pickles, and pickled red onion. Have some BBQ sauce on the side if needed.

Notes

  • Whole Packer Brisket: this is a cut that comes straight from the packing house, it contains both the point and the flat, two different muscles. An average whole packer brisket will weigh between 12-18 pounds. 
  • Rub: feel free to do a classic Dalmation Rub, which is equal parts salt and pepper, the other seasonings are additions and are not required. Classic Texas BBQs would be only salt and pepper, most BBQ joints now do add other spices and seasonings to create different flavor profiles from other BBQ joints. 
  • Salt & Pepper: use coarse salt and a coarse ground pepper, we want the granules to be about equal in size. 16 mesh ground black pepper is a standard BBQ size.
  • Granulated Onion & Garlic: don't use the powdered versions of these spices, we want the granules so that they stick to the meat. 
  • Chili Powder: use either a basic chili powder or a chipotle chili powder as desired, this will also add a red coloring to the meat as it cooks.
  • Trim the Brisket: For a visual this is a great video: https://youtu.be/MTc5VAgZKLE
  • Wrap the Brisket: Here is a video for a visual: https://youtu.be/dCnxCBMZCxE
  • Average Cook Times: at 225℉ expect at least 1 hour per pound of brisket. This can be cooked overnight, just monitor the temperature and be sure to wrap the brisket when it reaches 165℉ to push through the stall. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1pound | Calories: 865kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 114g | Fat: 40g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 337mg | Sodium: 3265mg | Potassium: 1898mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 92IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 61mg | Iron: 11mg