Cooking Up Perfection: How to Cook a Frozen Beef Brisket

A beef brisket delivers incredibly flavorsome, fork-tender meat when cooked low and slow But briskets are large, tough cuts that require time to break down and become tender That’s why the freezer can be your friend when cooking brisket. Freezing allows you to buy briskets when they go on sale, cook them when you have time, and enjoy delicious home-cooked brisket any night of the week. Follow these handy tips for cooking frozen beef brisket to perfection.

Selecting and Preparing a Frozen Brisket

Look for a well-marbled packer-cut brisket, which contains both the flat (leaner) and point (fattier) sections. Choose a brisket that is at least 2 pounds, though 3-5 pounds is ideal for home cooking. Opt for briskets minimally packaged without solution for better flavor and texture after thawing.

Once home, wrap the brisket tightly in a few layers of plastic wrap followed by a layer of foil or freezer paper Squeeze out excess air before sealing and freeze flat if possible Label with weight and freeze date. Frozen briskets maintain quality for 9-12 months at 0°F.

Thaw larger briskets over 3-4 days in the fridge on a tray to catch drips. Thinner briskets may only need 24 hours thawing time. Avoid thawing at room temperature.

Seasoning Your Brisket

A simple dry rub accentuates the flavor of the meat without masking it. Try equal parts salt, pepper, paprika, and brown sugar. Or a Texas style rub with chili powder, cumin, garlic, and onion. Massage seasoning all over brisket, even the sides and underside.

For bold flavors, make a wet marinade with soy sauce, ketchup, Worcestershire, liquid smoke, and spices. Inject marinade deep into meat with an injection needle. Marinate overnight in fridge.

No matter your seasoning, let brisket rest 30-60 minutes at room temperature after rubbing to allow flavors to penetrate.

Choosing Your Cooking Method

Low and slow cooking is key to breaking down the collagen in a brisket. Wet cooking and steam helps too. Options include:

  • Oven or Smoker: Cook at 225-250°F, allowing 1-1.5 hours per pound. Spritz with broth or apple juice to keep moist.

  • Slow Cooker: Cook on LOW 8-10 hours for a 3-4 pound brisket. Add liquid like beef broth.

  • Pressure Cooker: Pressure cook frozen brisket 45 mins per pound. Natural pressure release.

  • Sous Vide: Vacuum seal brisket. Cook 1-2 days in 155°F water bath. Chill and sear.

Use a probe thermometer to check doneness. Sliceable tenderness is around 203°F internally.

Resting, Slicing and Serving Brisket

Never slice into a brisket straight from the cooking vessel. Resting for 30-60 minutes allows juices to redistribute evenly. Wrapping in towels helps retain heat.

Slice brisket across the grain in thin slices for maximum tenderness. Chop or pull for sandwiches. Serve juices from resting as au jus or gravy.

Brisket loves traditional BBQ sides:

  • Cornbread, rolls, Texas toast
  • Coleslaw, potato salad
  • Baked beans or cowboy pinto beans
  • Collard greens, green beans
  • Mac and cheese, creamed corn

Leftover brisket also shines in chili, pasta sauce, rice bowls, eggs, pizza, and more. Enjoy!

Freezing Cooked Leftover Brisket

Like chili or soup, brisket often tastes even better as leftovers. Here are some tips for freezing brisket:

  • Portion sliced brisket in 1-2 cup servings in freezer bags.
  • Pack chopped or pulled brisket in bags to quickly thaw for sandwiches.
  • Cool broth completely before freezing in bags or cubes.
  • Label bags with date, weight, and any reheating instructions.
  • Freeze up to 3 months for highest quality.

Thaw frozen cooked brisket in the refrigerator before gently reheating on the stovetop with some broth or sauce.

With the right techniques, you can enjoy incredibly moist, fall-apart tender brisket from your own freezer anytime. Cook that brisket low and slow, let it rest sufficiently, and freeze the delicious leftovers. You’ll be so glad you did!

Crockpot BBQ Brisket From FROZEN | CROCKTOBER | Fermented Homestead


Should I thaw brisket before cooking?

Having prepared plenty of briskets in my life, I have become a pro at preparing this cut. This includes making sure to thaw the meat correctly, as it will later on help the beef to cook evenly and reach its tender brisket perfection.

How to prep a frozen brisket for smoking?

You must make sure that the entire brisket is submerged and replace the water every 30-45 minutes, until it’s thawed. This process will take several hours, and you’ll need to change the water frequently, so the meat doesn’t surpass that 40F degree mark, because that’s when bacteria can start to develop.

Is brisket good frozen?

When wrapped airtight and frozen right away, fresh brisket can be kept in the freezer from six to twelve months.

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