Small brisket

Hamp

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  1. Stampede
New owner of a 590 and have never done a brisket. I have a small two pound brisket just for wife and I. I am okay on seasoning but need to know best temp and time it should take to cook. Thanks!
 

Thor8594

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I run mine at 225º-250º until it stalls then wrap in either foil or butcher paper until IT of 200º.
 

Hamp

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I know you can’t be exact but I’m trying to get a ballpark figure for how long it will take to reach proper temp. Have no idea how to plan the cook.
 

Chris_G

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Guesstimate 1.5 hours per pound at 225 degrees, plus or minus 8 hours.

As someone here mentioned, it's ready when it's ready.
 

TheRicker

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Your question about how much time is probably the most difficult to answer....probably moreso with brisket. The thing to keep in mind is that it is, when raw, a most tough cut of meat. You're wanting to cook it low and slow until all the things that make it tough essentially melt. That doesn't happen until it get between 195 and 205 degrees typically. But even when it gets to temp, I recommend probing it with either the temp probe itself or a slender knife (maybe one not terribly sharp) to see if you get much resistance pushing the probe into the meat. I've had brisket get to 205 and it was still tough by my probe/knife check. It took it almost to 210 before I got no resistance to my probing. And, when you lift up the brisket with tongs in the middle of the brisket, it should droop significantly to the ends. There's a fine line between being under done and over done. But underdone, in my opinion, is worst than slightly overdone. Bottom line, it needs to "feel" soft and pliable.

That said, if you've got a 2-lb brisket, my guess is you've got a "flat". I don't know that there's a full brisket that's 2-lbs. My experience with a flat is that I smoke it a couple of hours at 225 or 250 and then wrap it with some liquid/moisture of some sort (beef broth?) and cook it the rest of the way to the desired temperature range and passing the probe/tenderness test. Flats can get dried out more than a full brisket because it typically doesn't have as much fat. And, again I'm guessing, if you've got a 2-lb brisket, I'm guessing there's no fat cap on it either. So keeping it moist will be important.

What I'm picturing is a brisket that is somewhat the size, shape, and leanness of a corned beef brisket. And I cook my corned beef briskets on my RT-700 much like I just described.

I hope this helps some. If you don't have temp probes, I highly recommend getting some. The Thermopen MK4 is a popular and helpful one. It's an instant probe. You'll want to get at least one temp probe that has the long wire lead so it can stay in the meat during the cook. That'll help make sure you get your beef products to the desired tender state and making sure chicken is cooked to a safe temp. Best of luck and happy grillin'/smokin'.
 

Chris_G

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Yep, and you aren't being clever either. I've had beef short ribs take 6+ to finish - and those are small.
Thank you, I was not trying to be a wise a$$.

Again, I think it was mentioned here on the forum. Meats vary and so do the temps. All briskets are not created equal.
 

TheRicker

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New owner of a 590 and have never done a brisket. I have a small two pound brisket just for wife and I. I am okay on seasoning but need to know best temp and time it should take to cook. Thanks!
Hamp...the bad and the good of smoking is practice, practice, and take a few notes. :)

I find a full brisket is way too much for my family...all 15 of us...so I cooked flats initially. Then, I tried cooking chuck roasts (from Costco...usually 2 to a pack). Seasoned and cooked like a brisket, it comes out tasting like brisket. And it's a lot cheaper to practice the process than a brisket. And, I have a 12" slicing knife so I can cut it across the grain (to the greatest extent you can with a chuck roast) and have nice slices like a brisket.
 

Traveler

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We just did a 5lb brisket at 225 and it took around 10hrs and that was bumping up to 275 the last few hrs. The internal temp was almost 200 when pulled and sat in cooler for a couple hrs. The meat was still a bit tough (sliced across grain). I’ll have to try it at 225 throughout the cook next time.
 

BethV

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I've done a lot of briskets in the past year and I've also done a couple small flats. I honestly don't think they come out great. They have to cook a long time, very low and slow. It can take 10 + hours and it's such a small piece of meat.

Personally, I think you are better off getting a small full packer. You can get them between 12 and 14 lb. You're going to trim away at least a pound or more fat. Cook it low and slow. Wrap if you wish when the bark is the way you want the bark to be. And let it ride until it is probe tender like going through butter. I don't go by temperature, I go by probing the meat.

One of the really wonderful things about smoking meats is that you can cut them into portion sizes and vacuum seal them and freeze them for many meals.

It's just me and my husband. But that's what I do and we are never at a loss for something wonderful from my smoker. My freezer is always full of something that has been precooked.

It's asking a lot of a tough small piece of meat to come out moist and tender.
 

Roaniecowpony

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Brisket (flat, which is most commonly seen in markets) has a lot of fine connective tissue. At 2 lbs, you likely have a half or 1/3rd piece of the flat. The flat is also fairly lean in that it has little interstitual fat (until you get Prime or Wagyu). Markets generally carry USDA Choice or Select grades, which have lower interstitual fat.

The challenge of brisket flat is to cook it long enough to break down the connective tisssue (melt it) without drying out the meat. That takes time, and low temperature. BBQing is cooking by hot air and air is a bad conductor of heat. It takes a long time to heat it with air and it dries out in the process. So, without a decent amount of interstitual fat, bbqing this piece of brisket is going to result in a very dry piece of meat, if you bbq it until tender. A flat with little institual fat is better suited to cooking by a wet method like braising.

Brisket is the biggest technical challenge in bbqing. To be successful, it first requires a high grade (Prime or Wagyu) IMO.

I recommend you watch a lot of YouTube videos from Harry Soo, Aaron Franklin and others. Harry talks about meat grade and prep more than most. This is one of my favorite sources of bbq knowledge https://amazingribs.com/tested-recipes/beef-and-bison-recipes/smoked-brisket-texas-style/

If you want big beefy flavor, moistness, tenderness, a smaller cut of meat and shorter cooking time, look into tri-tip. I've gotten to the point where I prefer my tri-tip over even the best brisket. Search these forums for methods on tri-tip.
 
Last edited:

Chris_G

Rec-Traeger Frankenstein
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Brisket (flat, which is most commonly seen in markets) has a lot of fine connective tissue. At 2 lbs, you likely have a half or 1/3rd piece of the flat. The flat is also fairly lean in that it has little interstitual fat (until you get Prime or Wagyu). Markets generally carry USDA Choice or Select grades, which have lower interstitual fat.

The challenge of brisket flat is to cook it long enough to break down the connective tisssue (melt it) without drying out the meat. That takes time, and low temperature. BBQing is cooking by hot air and air is a bad conductor of heat. It takes a long time to heat it with air and it dries out in the process. So, without a decent amount of interstitual fat, bbqing this piece of brisket is going to result in a very dry piece of meat, if you bbq it until tender. A flat with little institual fat is better suited to cooking by a wet method like braising.

Brisket is the biggest technical challenge in bbqing. To be successful, it first requires a high grade (Prime or Wagyu) IMO.

I recommend you watch a lot of YouTube videos from Harry Soo, Aaron Franklin and others. Harry talks about meat grade and prep more than most. This is one of my favorite sources of bbq knowledge https://amazingribs.com/tested-recipes/beef-and-bison-recipes/smoked-brisket-texas-style/

If you want big beefy flavor, moistness, tenderness, a smaller cug of meat and shorter cooking time, look into tri-tip. I've gotten to the point where I prefer my tri-tip over even the best brisket. Search these forums for methods on tri-tip.
Someday I'll find Tri-Tip at my store, I will definitely give it a try.
 

Hamp

Member
Messages
10
Grill(s) owned
  1. Stampede
Your question about how much time is probably the most difficult to answer....probably moreso with brisket. The thing to keep in mind is that it is, when raw, a most tough cut of meat. You're wanting to cook it low and slow until all the things that make it tough essentially melt. That doesn't happen until it get between 195 and 205 degrees typically. But even when it gets to temp, I recommend probing it with either the temp probe itself or a slender knife (maybe one not terribly sharp) to see if you get much resistance pushing the probe into the meat. I've had brisket get to 205 and it was still tough by my probe/knife check. It took it almost to 210 before I got no resistance to my probing. And, when you lift up the brisket with tongs in the middle of the brisket, it should droop significantly to the ends. There's a fine line between being under done and over done. But underdone, in my opinion, is worst than slightly overdone. Bottom line, it needs to "feel" soft and pliable.

That said, if you've got a 2-lb brisket, my guess is you've got a "flat". I don't know that there's a full brisket that's 2-lbs. My experience with a flat is that I smoke it a couple of hours at 225 or 250 and then wrap it with some liquid/moisture of some sort (beef broth?) and cook it the rest of the way to the desired temperature range and passing the probe/tenderness test. Flats can get dried out more than a full brisket because it typically doesn't have as much fat. And, again I'm guessing, if you've got a 2-lb brisket, I'm guessing there's no fat cap on it either. So keeping it moist will be important.

What I'm picturing is a brisket that is somewhat the size, shape, and leanness of a corned beef brisket. And I cook my corned beef briskets on my RT-700 much like I just described.

I hope this helps some. If you don't have temp probes, I highly recommend getting some. The Thermopen MK4 is a popular and helpful one. It's an instant probe. You'll want to get at least one temp probe that has the long wire lead so it can stay in the meat during the cook. That'll help make sure you get your beef products to the desired tender state and making sure chicken is cooked to a safe temp. Best of luck and happy grillin'/smokin'.
Thanks very much for the help.
 

wv5b

New member
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  1. Bullseye
Chris Lilly' book "Big Bob Gibson's BBQ Book" has an excellent brisket recipe in there. Here's the link to it.

https://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2009/09/slow-smoked-beef-brisket-recipe.html

It's the only way I make brisket now after trying many different methods (all good). His method produces a very delicious beefy brisket.
I can tell you really know how to cook a brisket. I too go by the fork test and my 2 prong meat fork should go in like butter. i also monitor temp and that is around 202 degrees.
 

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