Smoking brisket #2 for Saturday - Need advice

Discussion in 'Beef' started by john brennan, Jan 20, 2016.

  1. So I bought this brisket from Costco earlier today. Going to be cooking it on Saturday. Its 13.2lbs, seemed fairly flexible, and was the most financially reasonable choice while at the store. 

    I have a WSM smoker and this thing is just a tad too long to fit on it. Planning on 225-250 with apple and/or mesquite. So far I've liked apple wood with everything, but haven't tried with brisket. Thoughts on apple wood? Will this thing shrink at all while it cooks? Should I cut a bit off of the flat before I cook? 

    I'm planning on Friday night/early evening rubbing the brisket down with salt pepper onion powder chili powder and cayenne (but not too crazy on the chili & cayenne). Any other recommendations? 

    Of course I'm worried about over cooking the brisket. I'll wrap at 165, and try aim for the flat to get around 190-200. What type of fluid (if any) do you recommend adding when wrapping? 

    13.2lbs - How long (guessing of course) will this thing take to cook about? 12-14hours? I want to have it done around 5pm so it can rest. I've had issues in the past cooking a larger piece of meat and the boss (my wife) getting impatient and rushing me. 

    I'm comfortable cooking chicken wings, ribs, and pork shoulders but this is obviously a different beast. 

    I appreciate any feedback. 

    Here are a few photos of the brisket. 

  2. jcbigler

    jcbigler Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I would start by taking it out of the plastic and not cooking it on the stove like that.

    But seriously, after trimming, it'll be probably 11-12lbs. It may fit your smoker after trimming. If not, just tell your wife that you'll need to buy a bigger smoker.

    I like to spray with Apple juice during the cook.

    At 250 I think you'll be looking at about 11 hours total cook time. Wrap after 6 hours. Take the brisket to 200-205.

    That's a great looking brisket, btw.
  3. halfsmoked

    halfsmoked Master of the Pit Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    A lot of what we do in smoking is personal preference yes its going to shrink as most meat will. I use apple wood about 100% of the time I never wrap anything I like burnt ends. I cook about 14 hours at 225 it ends juicy and tender.
  4. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Brisket keeps really good wrapped in foil and towels in a cooler. So figure in an extra 2-4 hours to your guesstimate to keep the wife happy.

    I don't foil and I figure around 2-2 1/2 hours per pound. I use the toothpick method for brisket. Probe multiple spots and if it slides in with no resistance it is done. I start probing around 185. Every piece of meat is different and I have had brisket be done at 185-208.

    I don't inject or spritz, and as mentioned I don't foil either. I prefer a simple rub of SPOG. For wood I really like cherry or a 50/50 mix of cherry and pecan or cherry and kiawe.

    I recommend everyone smoking brisket give this thread a read:
  5. lemans

    lemans Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    It's going to shrink and probably loose 1/4 of it length
    I inject with beef stock. Use spg or better yet jeff S rub spritz with apple cider vinegar figure 10 hours on WSM. Apple or hickory will do the trick
    Bring it to 160-165 wrap with beef stock till 195-200
    In the cooler resting two hours...
    There will be a knock on your door. It will be me ready to eat.... Enjoy
  6. smokinal

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

    As you can see there are many different methods to smoking a brisket. How you get it to the end is a matter of personal preference. The thing most of us agree on is the finish temp. 200-205, OR until a toothpick goes in with little or no resistance. Check it in several places. I've had them done at 195 and not done until 215. But in most cases 205 is perfect for us.

  7. Thanks for the advice everyone!

    As far trimming this bad boy, if you look at the first picture, do I just want to trim the fat off the side that has the label? I have zero experience in trimming so I'm not sure what I need to cut and not.
  8. jcbigler

    jcbigler Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Watch this video by Aaron Franklin. Do what he does. 

  9. lemans

    lemans Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Here: go into google and type in Virtual Brisket
    Go to first link and you will see how to trim the fat from all angles
  10. westby

    westby Smoking Fanatic

    I do exactly what lemans said regarding temp and wrapping and I de-fat the broth and drippings once done and put it back in the pan with the brisket flat (see below).  I make burnt ends from the point.

    As far as trimming it goes, trim all the fat and silverskin from the side with the label and trip the fatcap down to at least 1/4 inch on the other side.  I trim it up a bit more than that so I can get good bark and smoke penetration on the meat itself and not just on the fatcap.

  11. aggie94

    aggie94 Smoking Fanatic


         I've cut briskets in half and they have worked out fine, can always do that if it is too long for your WSM.  Never had to add any liquid when wrapping, fat makes plenty of juice.  Agree with JC, Franklin's videos are very helpful.  Never have seen the virtual brisket but I bet its interesting.


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