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The Basics of Smoking a Brisket

Smoking a brisket can be a delicious and rewarding experience, but it requires some patience and attention to detail. Here are some general instructions to get you started:


  • 1 Sedore Meats brisket, about 10-13 pounds

  • 1/4 cup salt

  • 1/4 cup black pepper

  • 1/4 cup paprika

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar

  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder

  • 2 tablespoons onion powder

  • 1 tablespoon cumin

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder

  • Wood chips or chunks for smoking (hickory, mesquite, oak, or fruitwood are popular choices)

  • Aluminum foil


  • Smoker (electric, charcoal, or gas)

  • Meat thermometer

  • Heat-resistant gloves or tongs

  • Spray bottle filled with apple juice or water


  1. Prep the brisket: Rinse the brisket under cold water and pat it dry with paper towels. Trim any excess fat from the surface, leaving about 1/4 inch of fat to help keep the meat moist. Mix together the salt, pepper, paprika, brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, and chili powder in a bowl to make a dry rub. Rub the mixture generously all over the brisket, making sure to coat it evenly.

  2. Set up your smoker: Fill your smoker with wood chips or chunks, following the manufacturer's instructions. You'll want to maintain a steady temperature of around 225-250°F for the duration of the smoking process. If you're using an electric or gas smoker, you can set the temperature using the controls. If you're using a charcoal smoker, you'll need to adjust the airflow and add more charcoal as needed to maintain the temperature.

  3. Smoke the brisket: Place the brisket on the smoker grates, fat side up. Close the lid and let the smoke do its work. Every hour or so, check the temperature of the brisket with a meat thermometer. Once the internal temperature reaches 160°F, it's time to wrap the brisket in aluminum foil. This will help keep the meat moist and tender, and prevent it from drying out. Spray the brisket with apple juice or water before wrapping it tightly in foil.

  4. Finish cooking: Place the wrapped brisket back on the smoker and continue cooking until the internal temperature reaches 200-205°F. This can take anywhere from 4-12 hours, depending on the size and thickness of your brisket. Be patient and resist the temptation to open the smoker too often, as this can cause fluctuations in temperature and slow down the cooking process.

  5. Rest and serve: Once the brisket reaches the desired temperature, carefully remove it from the smoker using heat-resistant gloves or tongs. Let it rest for at least 30 minutes before slicing and serving. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat and ensures a more tender and flavorful end result. Serve your smoked brisket with your favorite sides and enjoy!

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