First time smoking a brisket...needs improvement

Discussion in 'Beef' started by dtoneill72, Sep 21, 2014.

  1. dtoneill72

    dtoneill72 Newbie

    Hello all,

    I smoked my first brisket today and it came out pretty good, but it needs some improvement.  First thing I noticed was that the crust was soft and kind of loose...not a crispy bark like I was hoping.   Secondly, and most importantly, the meat came out with a good flavor but was a little on the dry side.   I'd like to explain how I prepared it the brisket and hopefully I can get a few tips from some of you veterans for my second brisket!


    Took a cold brisket out of the fridge  and generously coated it with yellow mustard.  Once mustard was applied, I added my homemade rub all over and put it on kind of thick.   Wrapped in foil and placed back in the fridge.  Three hours prior to smoking, I removed the brisket from the fridge so that it can get to room temperature.


    Smoked using hickory wood on my WSM 22".  Temperature fluctuated between 225 -250 and overall smoke was about 12 hours for a 7.65 lb brisket.  Every couple of hours I sprayed some apple juice on the brisket to keep it from drying out (Maybe that's why the crust was loose?) and I did NOT wrap it in aluminum foil while it was smoking.   Once I reached an internal temperature of 185, I removed it from the smoker, wrapped in foil and placed it in a cooler for about 1.5 to "rest".

    Like I said, overall it was pretty good...not bad for the first one.   Just looking on tips on how I can improve.   Thank you in advance!

  2. Ok here is what I see based on your post!

    NO NEED to use mustard!!  That mixed with your rub is making a "gluey paste" that is making your bark mushy.   Apply rub and wrap then into the fridge overnight.  Then apply rub in the morning to re-coat.  Go lighter on the rub as well and you will see an improvement.

    NO NEED to have the meat come to room temperature.  In fact COLD meat takes the smoke better.  Go from Fridge to smoker every time.

    You don't need to spray the brisket to keep it from drying out.  That juice WONT penetrate the brisket at all and is only adding to your mushy bark AND when you open your smoker you are adding time to the cook. 


    I don't pull my brisket out till I hit 200-205F (or until a probe stuck though it slides in like it's in butter). 

    Everything else sounds pretty good.   Also MAKE SURE you slice AGAINST the grain for a more tender chew. 

  3. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Hello Darren...Scott pretty much nailed it on every point.  If you made a misstep, it was likely your final internal temp.  At an IT of 185*, a brisket will still be kinda tough and dry.  As Scott says, about 200* is generally a good temp to shoot for.  Just remember that it's not really done until it's tender...when you can easily slide a probe or a toothpick into the meat as through butter (in several spots in both the point and the flat), it's done.  Each brisket will be a bit different...the final IT for a tender and moist brisket could be anywhere from upper 190's to 210*.

  4. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Just wondering, have you signed up and recieved Jeff's 5 day E-Course?
  5. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Try again Darren ,  as Scott explained . . .and send Q-view . Kevins suggestion of the E-course is fabulous . . .

    My  suggestion is my signature . . .

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