Want the Secret to Incredible Corned Beef Brisket?
Not all corned beef is created equal. There is no doubt. Especially since not all corned beef is “smoked” corned beef brisket. For that, you need the recipe shown below.
If you are ready for something which tastes a whole lot better than what you are used to, you might want to get started with this recipe now.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Soak Time: 4+ hours
- Cook Time: 6-8 hours
- Smoker Temp: 240°F
- Meat Finish Temp: 195°F
- Recommended Wood: Hickory/Peach mix
The process of corning a beef brisket flat adds a lot of salt to the meat.
Some of this excess salt can be removed by soaking it in water for at least 4 hours (overnight is even better).
Simply place the brisket flat into a container and cover it with cold water.
Place it in the fridge while it soaks.
When it is finished, remove it from the water and dry with paper towels.
Note: It’s a great idea to put the meat down into a foil pan at this time. This contains the mess and allows the juices to collect around it while it’s cooking. This also makes it easy if you decide to cover with foil later in the cooking process.
First, cover the meat with Dijon mustard
The mixture of the mustard with the rub will create a delicious crust on the outside of the meat.
Set up your smoker for cooking at about 240°F using a mixture of hickory and peach smoking wood or whatever you have available.
Set the pan with the corned brisket on the grate once the smoker is ready.
You can expect about 6-8 hours to reach 195°F depending on how thick the meat is, how well your smoker holds the temperature, and other variables such as wind and ambient temperature.
I recommend keeping the smoke going for at least 4 hours.
Once the brisket reaches 160°F, you have (2) options:
Leave as is:
Don’t change anything– just let it keep cooking as is until it reaches the desired temperature and tenderness.
Wrap with foil:
If you placed the meat in a pan, this will be an easy task. Just cover the top of the pan with foil and let it continue cooking until it reaches the desired temperature and tenderness.
If you chose to put the meat directly on the grate, wrap the meat in foil or place it into a foil pan at this time and let it continue until finished.
Note: I get this question a lot: Can you move the meat to the oven now that’s it just needs heat to finish? Well of course you can and it will do just fine.
Cook to Temperature.. NOT time
Use a digital probe meat thermometer such as the Maverick ET-733 to monitor the temperature of the smoked corned beef brisket while it is in the smoker. This type of thermometer allows you to know the temperature of the meat without having to open the door of the smoker.
Note: You can also use the Mk4 thermapen to check the temperature of the meat once it is close to being finished.
When the meat is almost finished, I like to baste the meat with a tasty sauce made by mixing Dijon with my barbecue sauce at a 1:1 ratio.
I use ¼ cup Dijon mustard and ¼ cup of my barbecue sauce and mix it up real well.
This sauce is brushed on when the meat reaches 180°F and then once again when it reaches 190°F.
Be gentle and try not to disturb the crust too much during this process.
When the meat reaches about 195°F and you have ascertained that it is tender to your liking, you can remove it from the heat and allow it to rest for at least 30 minutes with foil tented over the top of it.
If you wrapped or covered the meat with foil and have the time, place the wrapped brisket flat into an empty cooler. Place a towel or two on top and then close the lid.
Let it stay in this configuration for 1-2 hours for further tenderizing.
Once the meat is finished resting, slice it about ½ inch thick across the grain and serve right away.
Serving suggestion: place a container of warm Dijon barbecue sauce (recipe above) on the table for a dipping sauce.
So what do you think? Pretty good huh?