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Test Kitchen Approved

Smoked Texas Brisket

Smoked Texas Brisket

Smoked Texas Brisket

Recipe By Mike Johnston, Savory Spice founder


4 to 6 servings

Prep Time

10 Minutes

Cooking Time

18 Hours

Recipe By Mike Johnston, Savory Spice founder

Texas brisket is practically a thing of legend. When done right, seasoned with lots of pepper and smoked low and slow for many hours, it should develop a flavorful bark around the outside, a nice pink smoke ring around the inside, and yield tender, juicy meat when you slice into it.

Recipe Notes

*On buying brisket: Ask a local butcher for a “packer cut” brisket which is a full brisket with both a lean and a fatty end. A grocery store brisket is typically in the 5 to 7 lb. range and is likely just the lean half, not the full brisket. You want "choice" beef or better with about a 1/4-inch fat cap; if it has more fat, trim it down to 1/4 inch.

*Savory's 'Cue Glue helps the seasoning stick to your protein and creates a tender yet chewy bark.

This recipe requires a smoker. You’ll also need a thermometer to measure both the internal temperature of the smoker and the internal temperature of the meat. We use a Maverick wireless thermometer.


Savory Spice ingredients in this recipe

  • 'Cue Glue

    'Cue Glue is a meat binder that's exclusive to Savory Spice. This "BBQ glue" helps stick your spices & seasonings to your grilled meats. As a b...

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  • Salt & Pepper Tableside Seasoning

    Salt & Pepper Tableside Seasoning may seem like an obvious, simple one to always have on hand – but this salt and pepper mix is a Savory Spice ...

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  • Extra Coarse Black Malabar Pepper

    Our Extra Coarse Black Malabar Pepper is the the perfect size of black pepper seasoning to use for BBQ blends, dry rubs and meat marinades. This bl...

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  • Native Texan BBQ Rub

    Our Native Texan BBQ Rub was actually created by a Texas customer who received the most votes in a competition to find the best BBQ rub to represen...

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  • Santa Maria Sea Salted BBQ Rub

    Our Santa Maria Sea Salt BBQ Rub is a handcrafted Santa Maria tri-tip rub that combines grey sea salt, black pepper, garlic and parsley. Use this S...

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  • Southern Gold Barbecue Sauce

    This Southern Gold Barbecue Sauce marries the sweetness of tomato with the tanginess of mustard. We upped the mustard level typically found in a Te...

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  • Midwestern Sweet Barbecue Sauce

    This Midwestern Sweet BBQ Sauce was inspired by visits to legendary barbecue joints in Chicago, Memphis, St. Louis, and Kansas City. These regions ...

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  • Black Dust Coffee & Spice Barbecue Sauce

    Black Dust Coffee & Spice Barbecue Sauce is a thick, ketchup & coffee BBQ sauce that's sweet, smoky and peppery in BBQ flavor. Add to your ...

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About 45 to 60 min. before you're ready to prep the brisket, take it out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature.

Meanwhile, prepare smoker: Clean the grates, fill an aluminum pan with water to set under the brisket, and start the fire with wood of choice. You want to get the smoker temperature to between 225 and 300 degrees.

While smoker heats, prep brisket: Use a brush to slather entire brisket with ‘Cue Glue if using. Season all sides generously with Salt & Pepper Tableside. Mix the extra coarse pepper and BBQ rub of choice together then use the mix to coat all sides of the brisket with seasoning. (The coarse black pepper is an homage to Texas BBQ and it adds texture to the bark.)

Set brisket on smoker: Place the brisket fat cap side up with the thicker side toward outer walls of the smoker where the heat will be higher. You’ll want to have a thermometer that measures both the smoker temperature and the internal temperature of the meat.

Monitor temperature: Check the heat about every 30 minutes or so to ensure smoker stays between 225 and 300 degrees; adjust heat as necessary. Check the water pan once or twice and refill if necessary. It's hard to say how long the smoking will take, but plan for at least 12 hours and up to 18. It’ll go faster if you stay in the 300 range. Keep checking the smoker temp and the internal temp of the brisket as you go. You want the internal temperature of the brisket to reach between 195 and 205 degrees.

Wrap brisket in butcher paper and let it rest: Once brisket reaches temp, remove it from the smoker and wrap it in butcher paper. Let it rest in a cooler with the lid propped open or in a cold oven with the door shut for at least 2 hours or up to 5 hours. It’s amazing how hot it remains and how juicy and tender it becomes when you have the patience to let it rest.