To brine or not to brine a brisket?

Discussion in 'Beef' started by jbacinti, Feb 25, 2010.

  1. Short and sweet; what are your thoughts on brining a brisket for anywhere from 8 to 24 hours?


    John [​IMG]
  2. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I never give a though to brining any cut of beef, maybe a marinade.
  3. caveman

    caveman Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Could you brine in a marinade for the same results, the results being looking for more tenderness from the brisk? (Does that make sense?)
  4. ellymae

    ellymae Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    What would you use for the brine?
  5. thunderdome

    thunderdome Master of the Pit

    I cant tell you why exactly, but an injection is about as far as I'd go for added moisture on a brisket

    Give it a whirl and let us all know
  6. bbqhead

    bbqhead Smoking Fanatic

    I dont feel brining would serve any purpose, when there's so many options that would do do what your looking for. I've done briskit without injections, marinades, or brining. just practice, practice, practice!
  7. fatback joe

    fatback joe Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Brined brisket = corned beef

    Granted the time is longer to make corned beef, but that is essentially the road you are heading down IMO.

    In any case, you can always eat the experiment, so give it a shot.
  8. csmith2884

    csmith2884 Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    I would caution too much brine as well...I found even a strong mop can change the great beefy flavors brisket is a loong smoke so flavors are intensified.
  9. ak1

    ak1 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    If it was a really good brisket from a AAA(prime in the US) grade steer, I'd leave it alone.
    russell page likes this.
  10. I know I'm just an old newbee here, but sometimes I just marinade a whole brisket in Zesty Italian dressing (cheapest at the supermarket) overnight. Sometimes I don't do that. I've never had a dry brisket even with just putting on a rub & let it "work" for overnight. I smoke it for a about 3 hrs in an open alum pan fat side down, then take out of pan, fat side down till its 180* then wrap with foil & pour some of the juices on it & put back in smoker till its 190*. I do mop it every hour when its on the grille with its own juices mixed with beer.
  11. herkysprings

    herkysprings Smoking Fanatic

    Actually a CURED brisket is corned beef.

    A Brine is not the same as a cure, although it can be.

    See here, a pretty good explaination:

    I dont think you'd get much from a brine with a brisket / beef. You'd be better off with a marinade (Dr Pepper one works great for beef), or injection, or nothing at all.
  12. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I', with Fatback with this one if you brine it (which I do make) then you will have corned beef. I would see a reason to brine but I might inject or marinade a brisket thou.
  13. In that time frame your brine wouldn't get very deep into a brisket. Injecting is the best method.
  14. pike

    pike Meat Mopper

    a brine would turn itinto corned beef, depending on what the brine is made up of. but hies thinking of the brine=tenderness, just smoke the meat to a higher temp 200-205 to really break down the collagen making it tender.
  15. Thanks to all for your advice on brining brisket. I'll try some of your ideas and post again.
  16. As a Texan who's been smoking briskets for 20 years, I would have to agree. Right wood (mesquite + pecan), right temp (225-275 degrees (roughly)), right time (6 hours is what I do), indirect heat, some wet (water soaked) wood, some dry wood, salt, pepper, garlic. Wrap it tightly in foil and heat it at 250 degrees for another four hours. Eat. Remember, if a bunch of old boys in the middle of nowhere didn't or wouldn't have it when they started barbequing, then neither would I.

    Practice, Practice, Practice. Nothing replaces time, simplicity, and smoke.
  17. flyweed

    flyweed Smoking Fanatic

    No brine for a beef brisket. You really want the BEEF flavor to come out....I inject my brisket with a mix of beef broth and melted butter....keeps it internally super moist, and you get that full beef flavor.

  18. redneck69

    redneck69 Smoking Fanatic

    i will agree with this...inject and do not brine....keep the dry rub simple...salt, pepper, garlic and onion salt/powder...which ever you perfer
  19. How long before the smoke should you inject?
  20. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    IMHO, I don't the reason, it will stay juicy unless you forget it - too many refreshments.

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