Finishing brisket in your oven is a great solution to bad weather or unfortunate circumstances. It is easy too – simply set temp to 225 F and keep a close eye on the brisket while it is in the oven!
I am all about smoking brisket the old fashioned way. That being said, there have been times when the rain has set in during my cook and I have had to adapt and move the brisket to the oven. Each time, I have made notes so that I can perfect the process.
In this post, I will guide you through finishing brisket in oven one step at a time. I have also included a few tips and tricks. Let’s begin!
This is something that I want to address before I show you how to finish brisket in the oven. The reason I want to do this is that people will give you conflicting advice on what temperature you should finish your brisket at.
Some will tell you to set the oven to 300 degrees F when finishing brisket. Others will tell you to keep the dial at 225 F.
So, which rule is right?
I would recommend always finishing brisket in your oven at 225 F. Keep in mind that this means that you will have to keep the brisket in the oven for much longer. Depending on when you place the brisket in the oven, you may need to keep it in the oven overnight.
Here’s the thing, though. When you cook brisket at a lower temperature, you give the muscle and connective tissue in the brisket time to break down. This is what keeps the meat moist, tender, and absolutely delicious.
I know that some people simply want to speed up the cooking process which is why they will crank the temperature to 300 F when cooking brisket. Sure, your brisket will likely be ready sooner but there is just too much risk of it drying out or being too tough.
If you are absolutely pressed for time, then sure use a higher temperature when finishing brisket in your oven. However, I would suggest a couple of things.
First, wrap the brisket in aluminum foil instead of butcher paper. Foil creates an impermeable barrier that helps to trap moisture. Second, keep a close watch on the internal temperature of the brisket and make sure to take it out at 200 F to prevent it from overcooking.
There are those that like to simmer onions in a Dutch oven, let the brisket cook in this mix for a while, and then add it to the oven.
You can try this method but it isn’t going to produce the authentic BBQ brisket that you may be used to.
Here is how to finish brisket in the oven, step by step, from start to finish:
Trim the excess fat off of the brisket. There should be a fat cap of only 1/4th of an inch thick.
Sprinkle kosher salt all over the brisket. Place the brisket on a tray and keep it in the refrigerator, uncovered, or between 24 to 48 hours.
Take the brisket an hour before the smoking process starts.
Combine the ingredients of the dry rub in a bowl. Mix well.
Apply a thin layer of yellow mustard on the brisket. Then, sprinkle on the spice rub and press into the surface of the meat.
Preheat the smoker to 225 F.
Place the meat thermometer into the thickest part of the brisket.
Place the brisket in the smoker, the fat side facing the heat source.
Cook until the internal temperature reaches 170 F.
As the brisket gets closer to the stall, preheat the oven to 225 F.
On your workstation, cut out two pieces of butcher paper. They should be four times as long as the brisket is wide.
Place one of the butcher paper sheets flat. Place the other on top, but with the bottom at the middle point of the first piece of paper.
Take the brisket out of the smoker. Place it on the sheets of paper, about a foot away from the bottom of the first sheet.
Take the bottom of the paper and fold over the brisket. Then, take the left hand side of the paper and fold over the brisket, at an angle. Repeat this with the right side.
Roll the entire brisket over. Then, take the left side and fold over at an angle. Do the same with the right side.
There will be excess paper at the top. Fold this over and then tuck it under the brisket.
Insert the thermometer probe into the brisket.
Put the wrapped brisket on a roasting pan.
Place the brisket in the oven.
Cook until the brisket reaches 200 F.
Once the brisket reaches the desired temperature, take it out of the oven and place it on a cutting board.
Unwrap the smoked brisket and let it rest for at least an hour before slicing and serving.
Here are some of the tricks you should keep in mind when you finish cooking your brisket in the oven:
In general, the temperature inside an oven is going to be higher. Due to this, brining the brisket is important. Try to do this for about 24 to 48 hours before smoking the brisket.
This will help to keep the brisket moist.
If you can’t prep this long ahead, I would suggest injecting the beef with broth instead. This way, you only have to wait about 30 minutes to an hour before cooking the brisket.
It is key that the brisket is cooked at a low and even rate. To guarantee this, use a reliable oven door thermometer or one that can be placed inside the oven. This will allow you to monitor the temperature of the cooking chamber throughout.
With the brisket cooking in the oven, it is important to keep a close eye on the internal temperature. This is the only way to know when the brisket should be taken out of the oven. In turn, it is key for a delicious brisket.
There are a few times when you may have no choice but to finish brisket in the oven.
Ambient temperature and climate can affect your smoke quite a bit. So, if the weather is bad, you can’t continue with your cook. If you try to, your brisket will likely be ruined.
Briskets can also take a very long time to cook – often upwards of 12 hours. Due to this, there may be times when you will run out of fuel.
There is also the fact that since briskets can take so long to cook, many people feel more comfortable knowing that their brisket is safely cooking in the oven instead of smoking in a smoker outside.
In short, while I am a bit of a puritan when it comes to smoking brisket, even I have to admit that there are moments when being able to finish brisket in the oven can come in handy.
One of the reasons that people are hesitant to let brisket cook in the oven is because they are worried about the flavor. In particular, they are concerned that you won’t get that telltale smoky flavor that makes for a delicious brisket.
Well, here is a piece of good news for you:
The smoky flavor is only absorbed into the brisket during the first few hours of the smoke. After you wrap brisket, the meat is unable to absorb any more flavor.
And, since you are finishing the brisket in the oven only once it has been wrapped, you don’t have to worry as you will get that same smoky flavor!
This depends on the temperature that you are using during the cooking process. If you stick to 225 F for smoking brisket and cooking it in the oven, then it can take about an hour for each pound of meat to cook.
If you are cranking up the temperature to 275 F or 300 F, then it will likely only take about 30 to 45 minutes per pound.
Remember that you should only ever use time as a guideline. Track the internal temperature to be certain of when the brisket is done.
This is all you need to know about finishing brisket in your oven. Now that you have the lowdown, pulling this off perfectly is going to be a piece of cake!