How to keep it moist..

Discussion in 'Beef' started by johnvi, Aug 1, 2011.

  1. johnvi

    johnvi Newbie

    Okay, So I'm a newbie, and sorry in advance if i didn't use the search correctly (if this was posted), just trying to get some advice here.

    I have a nice analog electric smoker i bought from my favorite store cabelas. I have smoked a LOT of meat, but had a question on one.

    When i smoke my beef brisket, i use a great rub i got from a friend that is a pro at this, must have over 20 ingredients in it. I rub the brisket down, wrap it, and put it in the fridge for overnight. I get my smoker going, soak the chips, and smoke it for like 5hours roughly, no more than 6. In between i do spray down with apple juice. ON my last attempt i even tried to wrap the bottom half with foil at the end of the cooking stage to see if it would keep some moisture in, but no go.  The end result is brisket that is amazing, but how can i get it to be as moist as this BBQ joints???

    What am i missing here?

    I wrap/foil my ribs, and they turn out great <But thats for ribs, not brisket>.., i see people on Diners/Drive ins and Dives that smoke for 12hours and it super moist...


    What am i missing??

    I even had a water pan in the smoker i keep filled...

    thanks in advance!
  2. roller

    roller Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Most everyone foils their Brisket at 160* IT  and  back in the smoker till it reaches an IT of 200*. Also put some kind of liquid in the foil with the brisket such as rum, apple juice, beef broth etc etc...

    Welcome to the forum...
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2011
  3. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    I hate to bust your bubble but 20 ingredients for a brisket is to much. Briskets are hard to get tender and the more you toss on them the worst they come out. My best ones had nothing on them. I'm gonna catch Haides for this post..............[​IMG]  So let Haides ride. 
  4. roller

    roller Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    I am with you meateater and not just on brisket....X2
  5. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    [​IMG]JohnVI, Meateater is right on, I like flavored Brisky BUT,I tend to coat with onlyS/CBP.Beef needs Pepper and this what the Butchers in Cen-Tex use to season thier Briskets and is a wonderful taste.

       I will figure cooking time(along with cook chamber temp. at 225* to 250*F for 1.5hrs per pound , without opening the cooker) thus holding the heat,moisture and pressure on the meat.I check then with a toothpick. When it goes in easy and comes out easy,I pull it and wrap it for an hour or so to finish tendering the Collagen.At that time I can actually RUB the point off the Flat and the flat will be nice and sliceable,Mmmmmm.My secret,when I put it in the cooker,I do not open it till time is up; at 225*f or so,it won't brun and the bark will be great.No sauce should be needed to flavor the meat,it stands alone.

       Yes, I do it different in several way from the others, but that's how I fly. And that's the way Cousin  Homer taught me in Temple,Tx. over30yrs. ago.

    Have fun and...
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2011
  6. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    When I trim the brisket, I save the fat & put it on a rack above the brisket so it drips on the meat & self bastes.

    It always comes out juicy without mopping or spritzing.

    I also agree on the rub. Less is better, I use Worcestershire sauce, then sprinkle with Montreal steak seasoning.
  7. Less is better sometimes we get carried away with spices.Back to the basics keep it simple let the meat shine through
  8. sunman76

    sunman76 Master of the Pit

    I'm not really qualified to answer cause I only have three briskies in my book but I spray with AJ and when I foil I add some AJ in with it to finish up.

    They have all came out great.
  9. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    If you are using a lot of salts in your rub (garlic salt, onion salt, iodized salt, etc) you are pulling the moisture out of your meat causing it to be dry; eliminate all the salt except possibly a bit of sea salt and it will keep the moisture in the meat for you.  Salt it all you want when you serve it, but not before.  Pepper is the big ticket seasoning for it.
  10. johnvi

    johnvi Newbie

     AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. That makes so much sense. Im a cook, so I understand this fully. And yes, I am using a good amount of various salts in this rub. I honestly think from all the replies im going to dial back the ingredients, back off the salts, foil when its ready / IT @ 160~, add applejuice to the foil, and just let the meat do the work for me.

    PS: You guys all rock!. What a great forum, fast reply with no hazing :)
  11. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    get back to us and let us know how your next few smokes go, if it solved the problem or not; if not, it could be improper therms, or drafts/leaks, etc.  But, I think its on the right track.  And give us some wonderful Qview showing us the goodness!
  12. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I agree with everyone here.  As the years have gone by, my rubs became much simpler.  Even sauces went pretty much out the window except for my other half.

    Pops makes a great point about salt.

    Good luck and good smoking.
  13. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Also it really helps to keep your cooking temps low on a brisket, I usually have my smoker running between 200° & 220°.
  14. Thanx to John vI for putting forth the question and tnx to the group for the answers from one who is just learning and has not done a briskit.

  15. johnvi

    johnvi Newbie

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    Okay Gang, so here is my Rub. Looking at it, I don’t see a lot of SALT like I originally thought..











    1 TABLESPOON CHILI POWDER               

    1 TABLESPOON RED PEPPER                   

    1 TABLESPOON GROUND CUMIN               


    1 Tablespoon Ground Ginger   

    1 Tablespoon coriander

    Im guessing perhaps the Ginger might be causing a dry type brisket, ginger can be kind of spicy..
  16. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Give it a try, one thing is that sugar will brown up and get crusty. Personally I avoid all salt and sugar in my rubs, but that's just how I like it. I still haven't found the perfect rub after all these years I'm still experimenting. Keep us posted. [​IMG]
  17. So you don't have to leave it in the fridge overnite?
  18. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Generally I put the rub on my brisket and let it sit overnight, but I have done as short as 4 hrs. and still gotten good results - but I prefer 12-24 hrs.
  19. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Yeah..... I would skip the sugar. Brisket is such a long smoke, and you stand a really good chance of the sugar burning and tasting nasty. I find with brisket that simple is best, salt (not to much), lots of fresh ground pepper, garlic powder, and paprika.
  20. johnvi

    johnvi Newbie


    Here is the run down gang,,,See im not a Post and Go :)

    I rubed both the 8lb pork shoulder down with kosher (Very little), Dark Brown sugar, Paprika, garlic powder, Fresh ground black pepper, and creole seasoning. I then injected some moores into both the brisket and shoulder in about 7 spots... Let them sit overnight

    Threw the brisket fat side up, and had my butcher trim some fat off the brisket he cut me, I toothpicked about 4 rolls of fat and positioned them over the brisket foir the first 4 hours of the cook. I also sprayed apple juice before i shut the door.

    So i have my brisket, with a pan underneath it to catch the drippings /ajure. Sprayed down with applejuice, And then this big ass pork shoulder sprayed down as well. try under that also.

    And my water tray for humidity and smoker tray.

    Smoked from 0730 - 1230 - Opened, took the fat rolls off the brisket. Sprayed with applejuice. sprayed my pork but with applejuice... Closed gate

    Back on the smoker at 250 to get the smoke flowing (But only for 14minutes) then since those wood chips are cooking again, back at 225..

    Total cooking time was 8hours for the pork shoulder @ 225

    Cook time was 9 hours for the Brisket

    I then put them in a bag, poured the dripping from each individual container that caught them over the meat. and carefully with a cooking rubber glove, packed the pulled port into ziplocks.

    I repeated for the fresh cut brisket... They marinated in their ajure and dripping sauce...

    Took this to my parents for a family party, and the 8lb pork was almost gone. The beef brisket was insane....i should have cgarged dammit!!

    Key for me, bagging them, letting them sit in their dripping sauce...And when i reheated i used 2 crock pots set to medium.. one for beef other for pork...


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