Ready to take your BBQ skills to the next level? This Traeger brisket recipe is guaranteed to impress. Using a wood pellet grill like a Traeger allows for precise temperature control and wood-fired flavor, resulting in a tender, juicy brisket every time. Follow these easy steps and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a BBQ master. So gather your friends and family, fire up the grill, and get ready to enjoy the delicious fruits of your labor.
Why You’ll Love this Recipe
There are so many reasons to love this Traeger brisket recipe. Here are just a few:
- The flavor is unbeatable. The combination of the wood-fired flavor from the Traeger grill and the delicious dry rub and mop sauce creates a taste experience that you won’t find with any other cooking method.
- It’s easy to follow. This recipe breaks down the process of smoking a brisket into easy-to-follow steps, making it accessible for even the most inexperienced cook.
- It’s versatile. Whether you’re serving a crowd or just looking for leftovers for lunch, this recipe is perfect. You can slice the brisket into thin, uniform slices for a more formal presentation, or shred it into chunks for a rustic, pulled pork-style dish.
- It’s impressive. There’s nothing like impressing your friends and family with a perfectly cooked brisket. With this recipe, you’ll be the talk of the neighborhood.
We hope you love this recipe as much as we do!
Preparing the Brisket
Before we can even think about firing up the grill, there are a few important steps to take in preparing the brisket.
First, make sure to trim the fat side of the brisket so that there is a thick layer of fat left on top, about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. This fat cap will help to keep the brisket moist as it cooks. Next, wrap the brisket in butcher paper, making sure to tuck in the edges so that the paper is securely in place.
Head to the grocery store to pick up any ingredients you may need, such as black pepper and any seasonings for your dry rub. Mix your dry rub ingredients in a small bowl, then use it to generously coat the brisket on all sides. Place the brisket on a large cutting board and wrap it tightly in plastic wrap. Let it sit at room temperature for about an hour before cooking.
Now it’s time to get the grill ready. If you’re using a wood pellet smoker like a Traeger, fill the hopper with your favorite wood pellets and set the temperature to 225 degrees F. If you’re using a traditional grill, set it up for indirect heat. Either way, make sure to preheat the grill for at least 15 minutes before adding the brisket.
For the best results, try to find a whole packer brisket, which includes both the flat cut and the point. The flat cut is the thicker, leaner part of the brisket, while the point is a thicker, fattier section. You’ll want to remove any excess fat and the connective tissue from the point, as it will not break down during the cooking process.
Once your brisket is prepared and your grill is preheated, it’s time to start cooking!
Smoking the Brisket
The key to a perfectly cooked brisket is low and slow cooking, and the best way to do that is by using a grill like a Traeger. With its precise temperature control and wood-fired flavor, a Traeger pellet grill is the perfect tool for smoking a beef brisket.
Start by placing the brisket on the grill grate, fat side up, and close the lid. Let it cook for about 3-4 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches about 165 degrees F. Every hour or so, use a mop sauce made of equal parts apple cider vinegar and your favorite BBQ sauce to baste the brisket and keep it moist.
As the brisket cooks, the smoke flavor will penetrate the meat, creating a delicious smoke ring and a tender, juicy brisket. You can also add some beef broth to a foil packet and place it on the grill to create even more moisture and flavor.
Resting and Slicing the Brisket
Once the internal temperature of the brisket reaches about 195-205 degrees F, it’s time to remove it from the grill. Carefully transfer the brisket to a cutting board and double wrap it in foil, making sure to seal the edges tightly. Let it rest for at least an hour, or even better, wrap it in a few layers of foil and an old towel and place it in a cooler for a few hours to really lock in the juices.
When you’re ready to serve the brisket, use a sharp knife to slice against the grain into thin slices. If you’re having trouble slicing the brisket, try using a pair of kitchen shears to cut it into chunks and then slice from there. The grain of the meat refers to the direction in which the muscle fibers are running, and slicing against the grain means cutting perpendicular to those fibers. This results in a more tender, easier to chew slice of meat.
If you have any leftover brisket, store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. To reheat, wrap the brisket in foil and place it in a 300 degree F oven until heated through.
Tips for the Best Brisket
There are a few pro tips to keep in mind when smoking a brisket to ensure the best results.
First, be patient! Low and slow cooking is key to a tender, juicy brisket. This means cooking the brisket at a low temperature for a long time. Try to resist the temptation to turn up the heat or open the lid too often, as this will only lengthen the cooking time.
Second, make sure to use a good dry rub and baste the brisket with a mop sauce regularly. This will add flavor and moisture to the meat as it cooks.
Finally, let the brisket rest properly after cooking. This allows the juices to redistribute and results in a tender, juicy brisket.
With these tips in mind, you’ll be well on your way to smoking the perfect brisket.
Serving and Storing the Brisket
When it’s time to serve the brisket, slice it against the grain into thin slices and serve with your favorite sides, such as potato salad or BBQ beans. If you have a flat cut brisket, you can slice it into thin, uniform slices for serving. If you have a point cut brisket, you can either slice it or pull it apart into chunks for a more rustic presentation.
If you have any leftover brisket, store it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. To reheat, wrap the brisket in foil and place it in a 300 degree F oven until heated through.
Frequently Ask Questions
Now that you have the basics of this delicious Traeger brisket recipe down, you may have some questions. Let’s take a look at some common FAQs to help you get the best results possible.
What are Traeger grills and how do they work?
Traeger grills are wood pellet grills that use wood pellets as fuel to produce smoke and heat. The pellets are fed into a hopper, where they are then ignited by a small electric element. The smoke and heat produced are used to cook food in the grill.
How does the smoking process work?
During the smoking process, the meat is cooked slowly at a low temperature (usually around 225-250 degrees F) over a period of several hours. This allows the smoke to penetrate the meat and add flavor, as well as giving the connective tissue time to break down, resulting in a tender, juicy finished product.
Where is the thickest part of the meat on a brisket?
The thickest part of the meat on a brisket is typically the point cut, which is located at the thicker, more triangular end of the brisket.
Why is my Traeger brisket tough?
There are a few possible reasons why your Traeger brisket may be tough. It may not have been cooked long enough, resulting in tough connective tissue. It may also be tough if it was sliced too thin, or if it was sliced against the grain rather than with it.
Can you overcook brisket on a Traeger?
Yes, it is possible to overcook brisket on a Traeger or any other cooking method. If the internal temperature of the meat gets too high or it is cooked for too long, it can become dry and tough. To avoid overcooking, use a meat thermometer to monitor the internal temperature and aim for the recommended temperature range of 195-205 degrees F.
Now to the real meat:
Traeger Brisket Recipe
- Traeger pellet grill
- Grill grate
- Cutting board
- Sharp knife
- small bowl
- 3-4 pound beef brisket
- Black pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup BBQ sauce
- 1 cup beef broth optional
- Trim fat side of brisket to 1/4-1/2 inch thick. Wrap in butcher paper.
- Mix dry rub ingredients in small bowl. Generously coat brisket on all sides. Wrap in plastic wrap. Let sit at room temperature for 1 hour.
- Preheat Traeger grill to 225 degrees F. Place brisket on grill grate, fat side up. Close lid.
- Cook for 3-4 hours or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. Baste every hour with mop sauce made of equal parts apple cider vinegar and BBQ sauce.
- When internal temperature reaches 195-205 degrees F, remove from grill. Double wrap in foil. Let rest for at least 1 hour or wrap in foil and towel and place in cooler for a few hours.
- Slice against grain into thin slices. Serve with favorite sides. Store leftovers in airtight container in refrigerator for up to 4 days or freezer for up to 3 months.
- For best results, use a whole packer brisket with both flat cut and point. Trim excess fat and connective tissue from point.
- To add extra moisture and flavor, add beef broth to foil packet and place on grill.
- Be patient and resist the temptation to turn up heat or open lid too often. Low and slow cooking is key to a tender, juicy brisket.
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