Oh man look at that! That's classic BBQ brisket for you. For the longest time I didn't really bother with smoking brisket. Mostly because I knew it was one the hardest meats to cook. Either you nail it, or it turns out to be like roast beef. Well, I was reading up on hanging a brisket on the Pit Barrel Cooker and I wanted to give it a try because it looked simple. I love cooking on the Pit Barrel Cooker. It seems to make things much easier and tastier compared to using other smokers. Also, the idea of hanging a 13 pound brisket on hooks is just down right awesome.
There a lot of people who are hellbent on smoking a brisket at 220 degrees, not a degree higher, for 15-25 hours. That's a lot of work and that's not what this post is about. This is a mindless brisket recipe. Buy the big packer brisket, pour some rub on top, triple hang it on the Pit Barrel Cooker until the internal temperature of the thickest part is over 160 degrees (less than 180) and has a nice color bark. Then you take it inside, pour some beef broth on top, tightly foil, assemble the grate and lay the foiled brisket on the Pit Barrel Cooker until the internal temperature is 200-205. Let it rest and you're done. The beauty of all this is that from start to the end of rest is about 8-9 hours. That's not bad!
Rub that packer brisket. I used the Pit Barrel Cooker beef and game rub.
Since you are hanging 13 or so pounds of meat I think its smart to do the triple hook method. It's probably overkill, but having 3 hooks in there reduces the stress on the meat quite a bit. Put one hook up top in the point to hang on the bar, then have two other hooks placed lower in the flat part of the brisket that hook into the bottom part of the hook directly above it. The Pit Barrel Cooker guys have this nice video that shows how to add the hooks to the beef brisket. This picture above is at time 0 on the smoker.
This photo is 3 hours into the smoke. I added some cherry wood chunks into the mix to start, so the smell of smoke was pretty strong at this point.
This picture is 4 hours into the cook. The bark is slowly but surely developing into a nice deep color.
This was about 5 hours into the cook. At this time it was over 160 degrees internal temperature but the bark wasn't dark enough for me. I let it go for another hour or so.
Here we go. After 6 hours it was about 170 degrees and nicely dark. I used three sheets of heavy duty aluminum foil, poured half a can of beef broth over the top and sealed it up. I added the grate to the Pit Barrel Cooker and laid the brisket flat in the center. I put a Thermoworks Therma-Q thermometer into the thickest part of the point and set the alarm to go off at 200 degrees.
After 2 hours of foiled smoking the beef brisket was at 200 degrees. I removed the foiled brisket and let it rest at room temperature for an hour and then sliced it up. I cup apart the point and the flat, sliced the flat in to amazing slices, and cubed the point to make burnt ends. This was incredible. The overall process was rather easy. I didn't do any mopping or any smoker temperature monitoring. The Pit Barrel Cooker just chugged along and finished the job while I did other things. As I mention, I love this little smoker. I review it on this article about smoking spare ribs on the Pit Barrel Cooker.
Look at that smoke ring! Look at that bark! Oh man this was tender.
Note: I used my iPhone for all of these photos. I really wanted to get the fancy camera out but I was having so much fun hanging out poolside and enjoying some beverages that I couldn't go get that camera out. I think these turned out ok, so I went with it!
Disclaimer: I have been a friend of the Pit Barrel Cooker company for a few years now. Now they have an affiliate program where I can make a few bucks if you buy your Pit Barrel through this link: Buy a Pit Barrel Cooker here. Buying your PBC through this link is no extra cost to you but it gives me a few bucks for typing all this stuff up and running the blog. Also, the PBC company makes more profit if you buy directly through them, vs buying it through Amazon or another company. If you like what I have presented here, please buy through this link. And certainly I stand behind this product. If it was garbage I would not be discussing it so highly. It's a great product and a great company.