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Best Barbecued Brisket in America?

Best Barbecued Brisket in America?

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"For barbecue, if you don't go directly to Franklin then you will have failed miserably," advised native Texan, UT Austin football fanatic, and cousin-in-law Danny Hardeman. "Get you some coffee and go get in line around 9 to 9:30 a.m. to ensure you get some when they open at 11 a.m. Don't b*tch about it. Just do it. You will be handsomely rewarded for your time investment. The lines are crazy and they always sell out within the first 90 minutes of opening. Franklin's brisket is the most amazing brisket in this world and I'm a huge barbecue snob. One of you should also get the Tipsy Texan sandwich. Man, I love barbecue. Now I feel like driving to Austin."

Click to See Franklin's Brisket, Turkey, and Sausage

Truer words were never spoken. And that was last December, before South By Southwest or the Austin Food & Wine Festival descended on Austin, certain to make Franklin an even more difficult breakfast achievement. That's breakfast in that you need to arrive when you'd usually be eating breakfast (by the time it opens, it's lunch), and an achievement in that if you don't follow the "Danny Rules," you're going to try more than once to taste brisket.

My first try followed the Danny Rules loosely. "It's Austin and we're up and out the door and in the car at 9:30 am. We're going to get there at 9:50 am. That's not early enough for barbecue?"

Forgive us, Danny, for our naïveté. All it got us was an hour-and-a-half of waiting only to be told by the Franklin staffer taking order estimates that the spot seven ahead was the day's last order. I determined to do better, to follow the Danny Rules to the Tipsy Texan.

That extra day meant I had time to hit Lockhart and try every goddamn piece of storied brisket and sausage I could. The day we failed Danny we used to be indoctrinated into the ways of the Lockhart Four: Kreuz, Smitty's, Black's, and Chisholm Trail.

That meant learning that Kreuz's jalapeño sausage has to be considered one of the best in the world, and that despite what signs there say, there kind of are sides. It's also clear that of the four, Smitty's has the best brisket, Black's has the best ribs, and that if you're looking for the least touristy of the four and want other Texas dishes like chicken-fried steak and fried okra, well, Chisholm is for you (plus they do drive-thru).

All the better informed to return to Franklin.

Round two on Friday morning adhered to the Danny Rules, the secret (save having someone wait for you) to making sure you taste Franklin brisket. Take this successfully navigated line count and timeline as guidance. We arrived at 9:30 am on a Friday only to find 13 people in line. When asked, the first person said he showed up at 9:10 am.

The line is something to behold. Turn around for three minutes and 16 people will have suddenly appeared. Turn around again and there are another 16 people, four at a time and sometimes more, crawling out of their vehicles. It's as though circus cars just showed up filled with barbecue fans.

9:38 a.m. 24 people in line
9:45 a.m. 37 people in line
9:52 a.m. 50 people in line
9:55 a.m. 66 people in line
9:59 a.m. 75 people in line
10:05 a.m. 91 people in line
10:08 a.m. 99 people in line
10:09 a.m. 100 people in line
10:13 a.m. 109 people in line
10:16 a.m. 117 people in line
10:18 a.m. 120 people in line
10:19 a.m. 126 people in line
10:24 a.m. 136 people in line
10:26 a.m. 143 people in line
10:29 a.m. 152 people in line
10:30 a.m. 155 people in line
10:33 a.m. 157 people in line
10:35 a.m. 167 people in line

At 10:26 a.m., you start hearing music and smelling smoke. At 10:38 a.m., with 179 people waiting, a server who has started making her way down the line, gauging orders over the past 20 minutes sends home 83 people, and gives the last man in line who is going to eat Franklin Barbecue that day (the 96th person), a cardboard sign that reads, "Last Man Standing." He gets a free beer for the trouble of turning away everyone who shows up afterward.

At 10:41 a.m., the doors to Franklin finally open. By 11:12 a.m., two parties have been served. And at 12:12 p.m., we'll have eaten and left. So figure on almost a three-hour affair. Here are a few takeaways from observing the experience and talking to people. Franklin supposedly makes more barbecue on Friday and Saturday. People are paid to wait. And late parties of four that show up 20 people ahead of the end of the queue, who step into a place that their early-riser friend was holding, are definitely the wild card.

So how the hell is the barbecue?

While slicing the brisket, Franklin has enough time and character, to ask you what you're going to do with the rest of your day. Your answer should honestly be that you're going to be discussing his brisket. Even the lean stuff falls apart immediately. There's a peppery, savory exterior, and perhaps most impressive, a quarter-inch deep smokeline that's moist long after it's cut. Fat is soft, flavorful, and easy to manage. It comes off proportionately with bits of meat. People often say you don't need sauce with brisket, and that's not always the case, but with Franklin's brisket, it's true.

Top 50: The Best BBQ in America

From tender, juicy brisket to smoked hog that’s been drizzled and dipped in tubs of sauce the size of the Gulf of Mexico, Americans know exactly how to prepare the best BBQ. We’ve updated our annual list for 2020, so add these places to your BBQ list.

Memphis might be famous for dry ribs, the Carolinas have come up with their own succulent spices, and Texas BBQ is, well, amazing, but there are a thousand and one ways to prepare a delicious plate of BBQ.

We heard from our readers and some food experts, and then we drew from our own experience to figure out where you can find the best BBQ in the US.

Get ready to put on those eatin’ pants and dive into some delicious food – here are our top 50 list of the best BBQ in America. The No. 1 spot likely isn’t where you’d expect it to be…

Aaron Franklin shares his brisket recipe

Top chefs can be secretive when it comes to their secret recipes, but Aaron Franklin’s brisket is simple and based on craft. There’s no secret to good barbecue, just great technique, and he’s ready to share it with you.

America’s favorite pitmaster shared his recipe for his famous Franklin BBQ Brisket recipe on his show, which we cover in-depth below, include the clips from the show so you can try smoking this brisket for yourself at home.

That being said, there’s so much more to this recipe than just the ingredients. If you want to learn from the master himself, we recommend checking out Franklin’s Masterclass on Texas-style BBQ.

In his masterclass, Franklin covers smoking techniques, the differences between types of smokers, recipes for a number of other BBQ dishes, and goes deep into his brisket technique across 7 different lesson – from choosing the brisket, through smoking, and even making his signature BBQ sauce.

You can also find this recipe (and many more) in Aaron Franklin’s book Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto.

  • Franklin Barbecue A Meat Smoking Manifesto
  • Hardcover Book
  • Franklin, Aaron (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 224 Pages - 04/07/2015 (Publication Date) - Ten Speed Press (Publisher)

Recipe | America’s Test Kitchen’s Barbecued Beef Brisket

This recipe for barbecued beef brisket appears in the cookbook “Master of the Grill.” (Daniel J. van Ackere | America's Test Kitchen via AP)

Published July 6th, 2018 at 6:00 AM

In researching recipes for barbecued brisket, we found that cooks could agree on one thing: slow-cooking (for up to 12 hours) to tenderize the meat. We wanted to figure out a way to make cooking this cut of meat less daunting and less time-consuming, and we wanted to trade in a professional smoker for a backyard grill.

We brined the brisket to season it throughout and to make sure the meat remained juicy even after hours on the grill. In our tests, we had trouble figuring out how to maintain a low temperature in the grill without frequently refueling. But then we realized that fire can burn down as well as up. We layered unlit briquettes on the bottom of our grill and added hot coals on top for a fire that burned consistently in the optimal 300 F range for about 3 hours. We then transferred the brisket to the oven to finish cooking.

Barbecued Beef Brisket

Servings: 8-10
Start to finish: 7 hours and 15 minutes, plus 30 minutes to rest brisket

If your brisket is smaller than 5 pounds or the fat cap has been removed, or if you are using a small charcoal grill, it may be necessary to build an aluminum foil shield in order to keep the brisket from becoming too dark. To do this, make two 1/2-inch folds on the long side of an 18-by-20-inch piece of heavy-duty aluminum foil to form a reinforced edge. Place the foil on the center of the cooking grate, with the reinforced edge over the hotter side of the grill. Position the brisket fat side down over the cooler side of the grill so that it covers about half of the foil. Pull the foil over the brisket to loosely tent it. Some of the traditional accompaniments to barbecued brisket include barbecue sauce, sliced white bread or saltines, pickle chips, and thinly sliced onion.


1 (5- to 6-pound) beef brisket, flat cut, untrimmed

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar

3 wood chunks, preferably hickory, or 2 cups wood chips (if using gas)

3 tablespoons kosher salt

1 (13 by 9-inch) disposable aluminum roasting pan (if using charcoal) or 1 (9-inch) disposable aluminum pie plate (if using gas)

To Make The Brisket:

Lightly score brisket fat cap in 1-inch crosshatch pattern, being careful not to cut into meat. Dissolve salt and 1/2 cup sugar in 4 quarts cold water in large container. Submerge brisket in brine, cover, and refrigerate for 2 hours.

While brisket brines, soak wood chunks in water for at least 1 hour drain. If using gas, soak wood chips in water for 15 minutes, then drain. Using large piece of heavy-duty aluminum foil, wrap chips in 8 by 4 1/2-inch foil packet. (Make sure chips do not poke holes in sides or bottom of packet.) Cut 2 evenly spaced 2-inch slits in top of packet.

Combine remaining 2 tablespoons sugar, kosher salt, and pepper in bowl. Remove brisket from brine and pat dry with paper towels. Transfer to rimmed baking sheet and rub salt mixture over entire brisket and into slits.

For a charcoal grill:Open bottom vent halfway and place disposable roasting pan on 1 side of grill. Add 2 cups water to pan. Arrange 3 quarts unlit charcoal briquettes banked against other side of grill. Light large chimney starter two-thirds filled with charcoal (4 quarts). When top coals are partially covered with ash, pour on top of unlit charcoal to cover one-third of grill with coals steeply banked against side of grill. Place soaked wood chunks on top of coals. Set cooking grate in place, cover, and open lid vent halfway. Heat grill until hot, about 5 minutes.

For a gas grill: Remove cooking grate and place wood chip packet directly on primary burner. Place disposable pie plate filled with 2 cups water on other burner(s). Set cooking grate in place, turn all burners to high, cover, and heat grill until hot and wood chips are smoking, about 15 minutes. Turn primary burner to medium and turn off other burner(s). (Adjust primary burner as needed to maintain grill temperature of 250 F to 300 F.)

Clean and oil cooking grate. Place brisket on cooler side of grill, fat side down, as far away from coals and flames as possible with thickest side facing coals and flames. Cover (position lid vent over meat if using charcoal) and cook for 3 hours. During final 20 minutes of grilling, adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 325 F.

Set wire rack in rimmed baking sheet lined with foil and transfer brisket to rack. Roast in oven until tender and meat registers 195 F, about 2 hours.

Transfer brisket to carving board, tent with foil, and let rest for 30 minutes. Slice brisket against grain into long, thin slices and serve.

Nutrition information per serving: 451 calories 260 calories from fat 29 g fat (10 g saturated 1 g trans fats) 120 mg cholesterol 1833 mg sodium 3 g carbohydrate 0 g fiber 3 g sugar 45 g protein.

— Follow @FlatlandKC on Twitter and Facebook for all your food news.

How to Make the Best Brisket at Home According to Hutchins BBQ

Learn how to brisket as tasty as this at home. Photo courtesy Hutchins BBQ.

While sitting down at your favorite barbecue joint to enjoy a tray loaded high with smokey, tender, peppery brisket is a little more challenging these days, you don’t have to live without Texas’ favorite cut of meat.

Although the temperatures outside might be nearly equal to those of a post oak-filled pit, summer is still the preferred time of year to hone the barbecue craft—the COVID-19 pandemic has only served as encouragement to give it a shot.

Hutchins BBQ, a DFW staple since the 1990s, has simple tips for the home pit master. The business has had to pivot to providing mostly drive-thru service, but despite the pandemic and the rise in brisket prices, it has been able to keep its employees working, and has even hired on more people.

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The good news is brisket is still in demand—it’s the heartbeat Hutchins BBQ and has been ever since Roy Hutchins started smoking on the side of the road in Princeton in 1978. Now with locations in McKinney and Frisco, and sons Wes, Trey, and Tim Hutchins on board, the focus has been on improving the quality of the product. The family has spent countless hours tinkering and tweaking their brisket-smoking methods. “It’s not just about the money, but about the legacy,” Tim says of their efforts.

Hutchins BBQ owners (clockwise from top left) Wes, Trey, Tim, and Roy Hutchins. Photo courtesy Hutchins BBQ.

The brothers’ biggest tip for cooking brisket is buying the highest quality meat. Finding the best meat possible is a process in itself—it took Hutchins BBQ four years before but it found a supplier who could handle its inventory and quality demands. Tim recommends building a relationship with your local butcher. “It’s hard to turn a piece of meat from a one out of 10 to a seven out of 10,” he says. “If we’re getting a top tier meat that starts at an eight or nine, then we can turn it into a 10.”

Through years of testing, the family has found that aging the brisket for 30 to 45 days is the “sweet spot.” For storing at home in a normal refrigerator, Tim says 30 days should be the benchmark. The aging process does not begin when you put the meat in the fridge, but from the date the meat was packed, so be sure to check the label to get the correct date.

Coating the brisket with mustard before adding the seasonings is important to ensuring a good bark, or outer layer, during smoking. Tim recommends using a well-mixed rub of two-thirds medium-grind pepper and one-third kosher salt. “You can’t go wrong with a two to one ratio on pepper to salt,” Tim says. “That’s just a good all-around brisket tip.”

At Hutchins BBQ, the pit cooks smoke the most of the meat with pecan wood—brisket is the exception. For the brisket, they smoke with post oak for the first three to five hours at 225 to 250 degrees before moving to pecan. Tim says he uses post oak because it helps with the “flavor penetration” of the bark and cooks hotter.

For cooking brisket at home, Tim says the key is the fire. You don’t want to have a fire that’s too calm or a fire that’s smoldering the logs. You want even, consistent flames. “You can cook a brisket without looking at it, just from seeing what the fire is doing,” Tim says.

When a nice bark has formed—usually when it attains an internal temperature of 170 degrees— wrap the brisket in butcher paper and return it to the pit. When the internal temperature rises to about 200 to 205 degrees, allow it to sit in a room-temperature environment for four hours or until internal temperature drops to 140 degrees.

Once that happens, it’s time to cut against the grain and enjoy your own Hutchins BBQ-style brisket.

Cooking brisket is all about feel, and that the more briskets you cook, the better you will get. Even for a pit master like Tim, it is not something he has fully mastered. “Putting the best brisket you can put out on every single plate, I think that’s something I’ll be working on until the day I die,” he says.

BBQ Brisket Recipe

Wait, you can cook brisket in the slow cooker? You bet! Start by combining brown sugar, chile powder, cumin, salt, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper. Rub all over a 4-lb. beef brisket and chill in the refrigerator overnight. The beef will cook in a vinegar barbecue sauce for about 8 hours&mdashor until it&rsquos very tender. Slice the brisket against the grain when it&rsquos ready to serve. Now that your main dish is taken care of, it&rsquos time to think about the sides. Our collection of BBQ Side Dishes gives you plenty of options to choose from. Big Daddy&rsquos Grilled Blue Cheese-and-Bacon Potato Salad is too good to pass up, but our classic Shout Hallelujah Potato Salad tastes just like the version we grew up on. Coleslaw makes another great side option for brisket. Whether you&rsquore looking for a vinegar-based version or something slightly creamier&mdashthere&rsquos a coleslaw recipe for you. Finish your meal with one of our delicious Homemade Ice Cream Recipes and you&rsquoll have a crowd-pleasing meal that your family will ask for time and again.

Texas-Style Barbecued Brisket

Editor's note: The recipe and introductory text below are from The Barbecue! Bible 10th Anniversary Edition, by Steven Raichlen. To read more about Raichlen and barbecue, go to our feature The Best Barbecue in the U.S.A.

Pork may be the preferred barbecue east of the Mississippi (think of the pork shoulder of the Carolinas and the ribs of Kansas City and Memphis), but in Texas beef is king—especially beef brisket, which comes moist and smoky and tender enough to cut with a fork. (Not that any self-respecting Texas barbecue buff would use a fork.) Barbecued brisket is simultaneously one of the easiest and most challenging recipes in the world of barbecue. Easy because it requires only one main ingredient: brisket (even the rub is optional). Challenging because pit masters spend years learning the right combination of smoke (lots), heat (low), and time (measured in half days rather than hours) to transform one of the toughest, most ornery parts of the steer into tender, meaty perfection.

Over the years, I've found that two things help above all: choosing the right cut of -brisket—namely, untrimmed, with a thick sheath of fat—and then cooking the brisket in a shallow pan. The pan keeps the juices from dripping onto the fire and the meat from drying out, while allowing for the maximum smoke penetration from the top. A whole brisket (the sort cooked by a restaurant) weighs eighteen to twenty pounds. Here I call for a partially trimmed brisket—a cut weighing five to six pounds. Do not attempt to make this with a two-pound trimmed, fatless brisket it will turn out much too dry.

To achieve the requisite smoke flavor, you need to smoke the brisket in a charcoal grill—or in a smoker. A gas grill will not produce enough smoke.


    • 2 teaspoons salt
    • Freshly ground black pepper
    • 1 (5-pound) brisket of beef, shoulder roast of beef, chuck roast, or end of steak
    • 1 clove garlic, peeled
    • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
    • 3 onions, peeled and diced
    • 1 (10-ounce) can tomatoes
    • 2 cups red wine
    • 2 stalks celery with the leaves, chopped
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 1 sprig thyme
    • 1 sprig rosemary
    • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
    • 6 to 8 carrots, peeled and sliced on the diagonal

Joe’s Kansas City-Style Brisket

In a city as barbecue-obsessed as Kansas City, there are many styles of brisket. None is quite as distinctive as the brisket at Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que, founded by Jeff Stehney, head pit master of the much-decorated Slaughterhouse Five championship barbecue team and a 2017 inductee in the Barbecue Hall of Fame. Stehney starts not with whole packers, as is the practice in Texas, but with brisket flats. He gives them the usual rub and smoke treatment, but what really sets them apart is the way they are carved—into paper-thin slices on a deli-style meat slicer. This gives you a sandwich with a shaved beef texture that may remind you of Chicago’s Italian beef.

YIELD: Serves 10 to 12

METHOD: Barbecuing

PREP TIME: 20 minutes

COOKING TIME: 8 to 10 hours, plus 1 to 2 hours for resting

HEAT SOURCE: Smoker (ideally, an offset barrel smoker)

YOU’LL ALSO NEED: A large (13-by-9-inch) aluminum foil pan wood logs, chunks, or soaked, drained hardwood chips a metal bowl or aluminum foil pan (for the smoker) a digital instant-read thermometer (preferably remote) spray bottle heavy-duty aluminum foil an insulated cooler a rimmed sheet pan a deli-style meat slicer or electric knife.

WHAT ELSE: Most of the briskets in this section are cooked to an internal temperature of around 205°F. This makes them supernaturally moist and cut-with-the-side-of-a-fork tender—the texture we associate with Texas barbecued brisket. Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que cooks the meat only to 185°F, which leaves it still sufficiently firm to slice on a meat slicer. Joe’s also suggests wrapping the brisket in foil partway through the cook. Imagine that—the “Texas Crutch” (page 60) in Kansas City.


1 large brisket flat (6 to 7 pounds)

1/2 to 3/4 cup Slaughterhouse 2.0 Championship BBQ Rub (recipe follows)

1 cup apple juice or apple cider, in a spray bottle, for spritzing

12 hamburger buns, brushed with 3 tablespoons melted butter and grilled or toasted, for serving

Your favorite sweet-smoky barbecue sauce (I’m partial to my bottled Project Smoke Lemon Brown Sugar or Spicy Apple Barbecue Sauce), or one of the sauces in chapter 10, for serving

Sweet pickle chips, for serving

Steven Raichlen did a deep dive on brisket for “The Brisket Chronicles.”

To Make The Brisket:

1. Using a sharp knife, trim the brisket, leaving a layer of fat at least ¼ inch thick (see page 14). Be careful not to over-trim. It’s better to err on the side of too much fat than too little.

2. Place the brisket fat side up in the aluminum foil pan. Sprinkle the rub to coat the brisket on all sides, rubbing it into the meat with your fingertips.

3. Fire up your smoker following the manufacturer’s instructions and heat to 250°F. Add the wood as specified by the manufacturer. Place a metal bowl or aluminum foil pan with 1 quart of warm water in the smoker—this creates a humid environment that will help the smoke adhere to the meat and keep your brisket moist.

4. Place the brisket in its pan fat side down in the smoker. Smoke the brisket for 1 hour, then turn it fat side up. Continue cooking the brisket until the outside is darkly browned and the internal temperature registers about 155°F on an instant-read thermometer, 5 to 6 hours, rotating the brisket 180 degrees halfway through so it cooks evenly. Spritz the brisket every hour with apple juice. Refuel your cooker as needed, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

5. Wrap the brisket tightly in heavy-duty aluminum foil, crimping the edges to make a tight seal. Insert the probe of a digital thermometer into the meat (it’s best to pierce the foil only once). Return the wrapped brisket to the smoker and cook to an internal temperature of 185°F, 2 to 3 hours more.

6. Transfer the wrapped brisket to an insulated cooler and let it rest for 1 to 2 hours. (This allows the meat to relax and its juices to redistribute.)

7. Unwrap the brisket, working over a rimmed sheet pan to collect the juices. Slice the brisket paper-thin on a meat slicer or transfer it to a welled cutting board and slice it with an electric knife.

8. To serve, pile the sliced brisket onto the prepared buns. Spoon on the reserved brisket juices. Add barbecue sauce and sweet pickles.


Yield: Makes 1 1/4 cups

This barbecue rub is classic Kansas City, with sugar to make it sweet and mustard, chili powder, and cayenne to turn up the heat.


2 tablespoons chili powder

2 tablespoons dry mustard powder, such as Colman’s

2 tablespoons sweet paprika

2 tablespoons granulated garlic

2 tablespoons granulated onion

2 tablespoons dried granulated lemon peel

1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon ground white pepper

1 tablespoon cayenne pepper

Combine the salt, sugar, chili powder, dry mustard, paprika, granulated garlic, onion, lemon peel, and black and white and cayenne peppers in a bowl and stir to mix, breaking up any lumps with your fingers.

Slaughterhouse 2.0 Championship BBQ Rub will keep, in a sealed container at room temperature away from heat and light, for several weeks.

Excerpted from The Brisket Chronicles by Steven Raichlen, photographs by Matthew Benson. Workman Publishing (C) 2019.

Slow cooker champion recipe is what this meal is. It comes from a wonderful cookbook, The Best Slow and Easy Recipes from America's Test Kitchen. If you like beef brisket or Texas-style barbecue, then this recipe is somewhat blasphemous but also right on the money. We tried it out Thursday night and invited some friends over to help us eat this huge piece of meat. This is a party or large family recipe (or you will eat leftovers for a week). The beef comes out so tender and moist that you don't even need sauce, but the "au jus" and barbecue sauces are great additions, as well. We served this up with some potatoes (recipe to come later this week) and baked beans.

This recipe takes a long time- almost a full day when you include preparation, but almost all that time is inactive prep or cooking time, so it's also great for when you don't have a ton of time to be attentively attending to something. The recipe itself is easy, and brisket is a good price, at least at our markets, so it's a fairly economical meal. The one thing that you want to make sure you note is that because of brisket's fat content, 1 pound of meat will only feed about 1-2 people generously, so don't think that you can feed the entire neighborhood. We cut the 6 lb brisket I got in half and just fed 6 people with no leftovers.

Slow Cooker Barbecued Beef Brisket
from The Best Slow and Easy Recipes from America's Test Kitchen

¼ c packed light brown sugar

¼ c paprika
1 Tb. Onion powder
1 Tb. Garlic powder
1 Tb. Ground Cumin
1 tsp. cayenne
1 (4-5 lb) beef brisket, preferably flat cut
1 cup barbecue sauce
Cider Vinegar
Ground black pepper

1. Mix the first 6 ingredients plus ½ tsp. salt together and then rub the mixture evenly over the meat. Wrap the meat tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 8-12 hours.

2. Unwrap the brisket and lay it fat side up in the slow cooker. Spread the barbecue sauce evenly over the brisket. Cover and cook until the meat is very tender and meets very little resistance when pierced with a fork, 9-11 hours on low or 5-7 hours on high.

3. Transfer the brisket to a 9x13 baking dish and cover loosely with foil. Let the cooking liquid settle for 5 minutes, then gently tilt the slow cooker and remove as much fat as possible from the surface using a large spoon. Season the sauce with additional sugar, vinegar, salt, and pepper to taste.

4. Poke the brisket all over with a fork, pour 1 cup of the sauce over the top, and let it rest, covered, for at least 30 minutes. Thinly slice the brisket across the grain. Arrange the meat on a serving platter and serve, passing the remaining sauce separately.

Barbecue: Brisket Recipe

My appetite for large pieces of meat seems to increase with the colder weather. Even though most people equate barbecue with summer, fall is the season when my smoker gets the most action with bigger cuts like pork butts, whole turkeys, and as was the case a couple weeks ago, brisket.

For this brisket, I picked out a 14-pound beauty at the butcher, brought it home and trimmed off the excess fat, leaving a 1/4-inch thick cap on top. Then it was coated it liberally with a beef rub from Southside Market that has been waiting for the right application, and after a day's rest in the fridge, it went into the smoker at around 215°F.

I let it go overnight. The next morning the meat had reached 165°F, at which point I wrapped it in foil and let it keep cooking until it went up to 195°F. Normally I would scoff at wrapping the meat, but after some research, I found this method can be a recipe for success towards a perfectly cooked brisket, plus meat doesn't take on much more smoke after the first six hours or so of a cook, so I figured I had nothing to lose. After 16 hours of cooking, I was rewarded with an absolutely tender and moist piece of beef.

The meat held together well when slicing, then melted away in your mouth with the distinct flavor of smoke and a heavy beefiness that makes brisket such a wonderful cut. The only problem here was the Southside rub was way too salty for my taste. It was the first and last time I'll use a rub that I didn't prepare myself, but luckily it would take much more than too much salt to kill such a delicious piece of meat, and most eaters sang nothing but high praises for this brisket.

Watch the video: Why Texans Call This The Best BBQ Spot In Dallas. Legendary Eats