Texas Style Smoked Beef Brisket: The Ultimate Guide

Texas Style Smoked Beef Brisket is not just a simple recipe; it’s a process that results in melt-in-your-mouth smoked brisket. With just salt, pepper, smoke, and time, you can enjoy the best beef brisket of your life. Have a look at our ultimate guide to master this classic Texas barbecue dish.

Sliced Texas Style Smoked Beef Brisket

Smoked Brisket: A Journey to Perfection

We understand how intimidating it can be to smoke a large, expensive brisket for the first time. That’s why we have tested and re-tested different methods and recipes to help you achieve perfect results every time using a relatively simple process. Once you try this juicy brisket, you’ll be eager to smoke another one. Let’s jump in and master this Texas-style delicacy!

Tools Needed to Smoke Brisket

To make the job easier, here are some essential tools you’ll need:

  • Smoker: Any variety that can maintain a steady temperature of 225 degrees F will work great.
  • Large Cutting Board: You’ll need a spacious surface to slice your brisket.
  • Meat Thermometer: We recommend the reliable Thermapen Mk4.
  • Butcher Paper: Use Hey Grill Hey Peach Butcher Paper for that authentic Texas style.
  • Chef’s Knife: A sharp knife is necessary for slicing your brisket.

How to Smoke a Brisket

Smoking brisket isn’t difficult; it simply requires time and patience. Follow these steps to achieve the best results:

  1. Select your brisket: Purchase a whole packer brisket with both the point and flat muscle included. Aim for about 1/2 pound (or more) of brisket per person.
  2. Trim the brisket: Properly trim the brisket to achieve the desired results. Check out our step-by-step instructions for trimming your brisket.
    Trimmed Brisket
  3. Season your brisket: Texas-style brisket is seasoned with coarse salt, coarse black pepper, and optionally garlic powder.
  4. Get Smoking! Use a nice hardwood in your smoker for consistent heat and a steady flow of thin blue smoke.
  5. Wrap the brisket: To achieve a super juicy tender brisket with a killer dark caramelized bark, wrap the brisket tightly in Hey Grill Hey Peach Butcher Paper and continue smoking at 225 degrees F until the internal temperature reaches 202 degrees F at the thickest part.
    Wrapped Brisket
  6. Rest your smoked brisket: Resting your brisket allows the juicy, flavorful juices to settle and redistribute. Do not skip this step.
  7. Slice your brisket: Slice your smoked brisket against the grain for maximum tenderness. Serve and enjoy!
    Sliced Smoked Brisket
Further reading:  How to Wrap Brisket for Perfect Results

How Long to Smoke a Brisket

The smoking time can vary, but here’s a general guideline:

  • Initial smoke phase: Plan about 8 hours at 225 degrees F for a 12-13 pound brisket to reach 165 degrees F.
  • The stall: Between 145 degrees F and 165 degrees F, the meat may take longer to cook. Use a reliable internal thermometer to monitor the temperature.
  • Wrapped smoke phase: This can take anywhere from 5-8 hours. Plan for a total cook time of 12-18 hours to fully cook your brisket.

Tips for the Best Smoked Beef Brisket

Here are some pro tips to help you achieve an exceptional smoked brisket:

  • Mix your spices in advance: Shake a mixture of salt, pepper, and garlic from a spice shaker container for even seasoning.
  • Either side up cooks just fine: There’s no significant difference between cooking with the fat side up or down. Choose your preferred method.
  • Don’t forget to rest: Rest your brisket for at least one hour to allow the flavors to settle. It can be kept in an insulated cooler wrapped in a towel for up to 6 hours.
  • Try different variations: Consider slathering the brisket with yellow mustard as a binder or experiment with foil wrapping. You can also adjust the smoking temperature to suit your preference.


Q: What is the best wood for smoking brisket?
A: A nice hardwood, such as oak or cherry, is ideal for smoking brisket. The goal is to achieve consistent heat and a steady flow of thin blue smoke.

Q: How can I store leftover smoked brisket?
A: Leftover brisket can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days. You can also freeze it for future use. Just make sure to wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or freezer bags to prevent freezer burn.

Further reading:  How to Perfectly Rest Your Brisket: Grill Master Tips

Q: Can I smoke a brisket in an oven instead of a smoker?
A: While a smoker provides a traditional smoky flavor, you can still smoke a brisket in an oven. Set the oven to the desired temperature and follow the same instructions for seasoning, wrapping, and resting.


Now that you have the ultimate guide to smoking a Texas-style beef brisket, it’s time to fire up your smoker and get cooking. Remember, it’s a process that requires patience and practice, but the end result is well worth it. Enjoy the smoky, melt-in-your-mouth goodness of a perfectly smoked brisket!

For more delicious recipes and barbecue inspiration, visit Rowdy Hog Smokin BBQ.

This article was originally published on June 2017 and has been updated and republished in January 2019.