There are a lot of ways to smoke a brisket. This recipe shows you a way to get a super juicy brisket with an amazing bark when using a pellet grill. In this recipe we are going to smoke a traditional Texas BBQ joint fat side up brisket on the 2nd shelf of our Traeger Timberline XL. You can use any pellet smoker you desire. We are going to go with a low and slow smoke to help us obtain a beautiful bark then slowly increase the temperature to render out the fat and get to the final desired tenderness.
Meat Church How To YouTube Video: https://youtu.be/klmG0DQgEJs
Weekday Brisket 2.0: https://youtu.be/PFL7tTmvVBU
All Brisket Videos: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLLlcC6gl4PGL-ZU6o3AAiVKt5d50n4HzL
- 1 15 - 18 lb full packer brisket, trimmed
- 2 T, Meat Church Holy Cow (sub salt & pepper)
- 1 T, Meat Church Holy Gospel (optional)
- 1 T, 16 mesh black pepper (optional)
- 1 T, yellow mustard or worcestershire sauce for a binder (we used The W Sauce in the video above)
- Instant Read Thermometer
- butcher paper, unwaxed
- Spray Bottle with Apple Cider Vinegar
Prepare the Pellet Grill\Smoker
Prepare your pellet grill to a temperature of 200 with oak, mesquite, hickory or pecan. We used Meat Church pellets in this video which is a blend of oak and hickory.
Prepare the Brisket
We are staring with a trimmed brisket. You can see my trimming method to maximize perfect slices in this How to Trim a Brisket video. Never waste any trim. Grind your trim into ground meat for burgers etc.
Slather your brisket all over with mustard or worcestershire sauce. This will act as a binder and assist your seasoning in sticking all over throughout the cook. Immediately season the brisket to your liking. In this video we seasoned 2:1 with our Holy Cow & Holy Gospel. Holy Cow is primarily salt & pepper, so it is a very Texas BBQ rub.
Allow the seasoning to adhere at least 30 minutes. For best results allow the seasoning to adhere overnight in your refrigerator.
Smoke the Brisket
Place the brisket fat side up in the pellet grill. If you have a 2nd shelf that is large enough to hold a brisket I prefer to place it there to get the brisket a little further away from the heat source that is directly in the middle.
A lot of folks prefer smoking meat side up. If that is your preference that is ok. Again, we are going the more traditional Texas fat side up method in this video which yields my favorite results. Smoke the brisket until you reach an internal temp of 165.
Increase the temperature to 225 until you reach 175 internal. That took me approximately 2 hours. At that point it's time to wrap.
Wrap the Brisket
Wrap the brisket in butcher paper. Butcher paper is permeable which helps you keep that bark you have developed so far. If you prefer, you can wrap in foil. This method will steam the brisket, finishing cooking a little quicker and the bark can become wet. The difference in wrapping in paper vs. foil can be seen in this following Smoking Brisket in Foil vs. Butcher Paper video.
Increase the temperature to 250 or even 275 depending how much time you have to complete this cook. Place the brisket back in the pellet smoker remaining fat side up.
Smoke until tender in the middle of the flat which was 203 in this video which took a couple more hours of smoking.
Optionally you can pour some tallow over the brisket if you are going with a long rest.
Rest the Brisket
The rest is just as important as the cook. The top BBQ joints in Texas rest their briskets for 8 hours in a warmer at 140. Most home cooks don't have that options as they lack the required tools to safely maintain a brisket above 140 internal temperature. A brisket will not safely hold in a cooler that long. An option is to rest the brisket for 2 hours at ambient temperature on the counter. Then place the brisket into your Traeger on "Keep Warm" which is 165 on a Traeger. That is a little hotter than the ideal temperature so play with that to your liking. Another option is your oven, but they typically only go down to 170 degrees.
In this video we rested at ambient temperature on the counter in our outdoor kitchen for 1 hour. Then we placed in a YETI for 2 more hours. If we were not shooting a video we would have preferred to rest even longer.
Unwrap to see how you did!
Slice only what you want to eat and enjoy!