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Texas-style Barbecue Brisket

A tough fatty piece of meat is seasoned and slow-cooked into pure beefy goodness.

Texas-style Barbecue Brisket


  • 3-10 lbs of beef brisket
  • 1/4-1 cup of olive oil
  • 2-7 cups of spice rub
  • 1/4-1 cup of pepper
  • 1 ounce of liquid smoke


  1. Remove brisket from cold storage and allow it to come to room temperature.
  2. Preheat oven to 200º.
  3. Pat dry the brisket with paper towels.
  4. Coat brisket with the olive oil.
  5. Coat oiled brisket with a layer of spice rub.
  6. Coat oiled/spiced brisket with the pepper.
  7. Let the brisket sit for 10-15 minutes.
  8. Pour the liquid smoke into a roasting pan.
  9. Place brisket into roasting pan fat-side up.
  10. Cover pan with lid or aluminum foil and place into oven.
  11. Slow cook brisket. You should calculate based on the idea of 1-1 1/2 hours per pound of meat. So a 5-lb brisket should slow cook for 5-7 1/2 hours.
  12. When you think it’s finished, remove from oven and let it sit covered for 20-30 minutes to finish.
  13. Uncover and check with meat thermometer to see if it’s done. If not done, then cover and slow cook more.
  14. Slice finished brisket against the grain. This will keep the pieces more intact.

Quick Notes

The variating amounts in the ingredients are mostly because it all depends on what size cut of brisket you get. Use your best judgment.

Some might not agree with the idea of olive oil, but I like to coat meats with it before placing spices. It will keep the meat tender and flavorful, plus it helps the rub stick.

Having the rubbed meat sit for a short time is to make the rub work like a marinade. You want the spices to work their way into the meat and not just become an outer coating. For the brisket in the image, I ended up leaving it overnight in the refrigerator with rub on it because I miscalculated how much time I needed. It still turned out beautiful.

The extra pepper was a suggestion from Barry Sorkin from both the show and other videos he’s appeared on. It adds that classic Texas flavor and goes well with this particular dish.

The liquid smoke is a trick to add that smoked flavor to the meat. While I would not say it can replace a full-fledged smoker, it does wonders.

Placing the meat fat-side up is a trick I also picked up from Sorkin. He stated that the fat will gelatinize while cooking and soak into the meat, keeping it juicy. I will admit while I try to keep things as “trimmed” as possible, this worked very very well, and I would not recommend doing things any other way. The fat itself even was like a sauce more than anything.


You’re welcome to season brisket any way you choose as I mentioned with the rub recipe.

If a long time at 200º does not turn you on, then try playing with the temperatures. You can go up to 275º or 300º even and cook for a shorter amount of time. You might want a higher temperature if you’re dealing with a bigger piece of meat. Just don’t rush things. The end result is meat that is falling apart as you cut it, not cooked leather.

The other way to try cooking is to smoke the meat. In this case you don’t need the liquid smoke. Just follow the recipe and smoke the brisket with whatever wood and flavors you desire. The same goes if you have an oven-based smoking pan.

Serving Suggestions

I generally like to hit it with my favorite barbecue sauce and go to town. It also works quite nicely on a hearty roll for a wonderful sandwich.

Tags: American, barbecue, beef, brisket, Texas

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