Make Melt-In-Your-Mouth Tender Beef Brisket In A Roaster With This Easy Recipe

Hey y’all! I’m back with another recipe that’s sure to become your new favorite. If you love tender, fall-apart beef brisket but don’t have a smoker, this recipe is for you. I’m gonna show you how to make competition-style brisket with a gorgeous smoke ring and insanely juicy meat, all in a regular ol’ roasting pan. No messy charcoal or fancy equipment required!

I love brisket just as much as any tried and true Texan But living in a tiny apartment in the city, firing up a smoker just wasn’t realistic After tons of trial and error, I finally cracked the code on how to mimic authentic smoked brisket flavor using just a roasting pan and your oven. The end result is smokey, juicy perfection every time, with way less effort. Get ready for the best brisket of your life!

Here’s What You’ll Need:

  • 5-6 lb untrimmed beef brisket

  • Dry rub:

    • 2 tbsp coarse black pepper

    • 2 tbsp paprika

    • 1 tbsp garlic powder

    • 1 tbsp onion powder

    • 1 tbsp mustard powder

    • 2 tsp kosher salt

  • Roasting pan with rack

  • 2 cups wood chips, soaked in water for 30 minutes (I like oak or hickory)

  • Foil

  • Basting liquid:

    • 1 cup beef broth

    • 1⁄4 cup apple cider vinegar

    • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

  • Ranch dressing and pickles, for serving

Step 1 – Prep The Brisket

Start by trimming your brisket if needed. You want to leave about 1⁄4 inch of fat cap on top. This renders down as it cooks, keeping the meat super moist and flavorful.

Pat the brisket dry with paper towels. Then generously sprinkle the dry rub all over, pressing it into the meat. Get a nice even coating on both sides. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or up to overnight. This lets the spices really soak in.

Step 2 – Add The Smoke

Here’s where we infuse that sweet barbecue flavor without an actual smoker. Drain your soaked wood chips and scatter them in the bottom of a roasting pan. Place a wire rack on top.

Put the seasoned brisket on the rack, fat side up. We’ll start it fat side up to let the fat render and baste the meat.

Cover the pan very tightly with heavy duty foil. This traps in the smoke so the meat soaks up that delicious flavor.

Step 3 – Roast Low And Slow

Pop your brisket in a 250°F oven for about 4-5 hours. This low and slow cooking gives you super tender meat.

After 2 hours, quickly remove the pan and sprinkle over more wood chips. Recover tightly with foil and return to the oven.

At the 4 hour mark, check for doneness by inserting a knife in the thickest part. It should slide in and out with little resistance.

Once it’s tender, remove from the oven but keep the oven on.

Step 4 – Baste And Back In The Oven

Now we’re gonna amp up the flavor with a tasty basting liquid. In a small bowl, combine the beef broth, cider vinegar and Worcestershire. Whisk together.

Remove the foil from the roasting pan. Flip the brisket over so the fat cap is down. Liberally brush the basting liquid all over the meat.

Return the brisket to the oven, uncovered. Baste with the liquid again after 30 minutes. Roast for another 60-90 minutes until the brisket develops an insanely delicious, dark bark on the surface.

Step 5 – Rest, Slice and Serve

When the brisket is beautifully caramelized, take it out of the oven and let it rest for at least 30 minutes. This allows the juices to reabsorb back into the meat.

Once rested, transfer the brisket to a cutting board. Thinly slice across the grain. Don’t forget to save those delicious pan juices for serving!

Serve the brisket warm with slices of white bread, pickles, and a drizzle of pan juices. A side of ranch or bbq sauce for dipping takes it over the top!

This meat is so unbelievably juicy, smokey and full of flavor. I’m telling y’all, it holds its own against any barbeque joint brisket. The moist, fall-apart tender meat with that pink smoke ring is absolute perfection.

Pro Cooking Tips:

  • Look for a brisket with nice marbling throughout. This keeps it extra moist and tender.

  • Use oak, pecan, hickory or mesquite wood chips. They each give a slightly different smoke flavor.

  • Keep the oven temperature low. High heat causes brisket to dry out.

  • Baste every 30 minutes at the end for maximum moisture.

  • Always let the meat rest before slicing for juicier results.

  • Slice very thin across the grain. This gives you those perfect melt-in-your-mouth pieces.

  • Save the pan drippings to drizzle over the brisket or use for a killer au jus dip.

Common Rookie Mistakes:

  • Trimming off too much fat. That fat cap is crucial for moisture!

  • Skipping the overnight dry rub. Rushing this step means bland brisket.

  • Cooking at too high of a temp. Gotta go low and slow.

  • Not letting the brisket rest before slicing. Rookie mistake!

  • Forgetting to slice against the grain. Makes it chewy instead of tender.

Variations & Substitutions:

  • Use a dry rub of your choice. I love using a coffee rub sometimes.

  • Swap different woods for the chips. Apple, cherry and maple are all delicious.

  • Make pastrami by using a pastrami spice rub instead of BBQ style.

  • Turn leftovers into amazing brisket tacos, nachos, sandwiches, etc.

  • Use beef broth or stock instead of water for the basting liquid.

Until next time,

Best Brisket Ever!


How long does it take to cook a brisket in a roaster?

This will allow the fat to render and baste the meat as it cooks. Cooking time and temperature: For a perfectly tender brisket, slow and low is the way to go. Set the roaster oven temperature between 225-250°F (107-121°C) and cook for approximately 1.5-2 hours per pound of brisket.

Do you put brisket fat side up or down in roaster?

Ask almost any contestant on the competition barbecue circuit, including Traeger’s own Chad Ward, whether to cook a brisket fat side up or down, and you will likely get the same unanimous answer: fat side down.

Should you cover brisket when roasting?

While we can’t exactly replicate the terroir of a Texas smokehouse, we can slow-roast brisket in the oven at home. Roast the brisket at 300°F and keep it covered in foil for the first six hours, and uncover it in the last two to three hours of cooking.

What is the best temperature to roast a brisket?

While it can be tempting to sear that fat at a high temperature, doing so will likely result in tougher meat. For this reason, be sure to roast brisket at a lower oven temperature, between 225 to 300 degrees Fahrenheit to achieve tender brisket. What is this?

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