Crock Pot Brisket . . . Really?
Serves 6-8 | Prep Time: Minutes | Cook Time: 8 Hours
I’ve often been asked by beginner pitmasters whether it’s possible to barbecue a brisket in a crock pot. Technically, the answer is no. You’re not going to get that smoky flavor of meat perfumed in a smoldering wood pit. You can, however, succeed in getting a very tender and flavorful beefy end product in the crock-pot. How would you like to be able to use your crock-pot to create not one, but two brisket recipes without breaking a sweat? Read on if you want to know how I make very passable brisket burnt ends and beef pot roast using my super easy crock-pot method. Try my approach next time it’s cold and wintery outside and you don’t feel like digging out your pit in sub-zero temperatures.
For this recipe, I began with a with a 15 lb brisket packer. A packer is a brisket comprised of two connected muscles called the flat and the point. The flat is the leaner part which is typically served sliced and the point, or fattier part, is where yummy burnt-ends come from.
I remove all the fat from the point and carefully separate the point from the flat. I trim off most of the fat from the flat and keep about 1/8 inch fat cap. I cut the point into two equal-sized pieces and do the same for the flat so I end up with 4 trimmed brisket pieces.
The idea is to season and place the four dry pieces stacked in the crock-pot so that the two top point-pieces do NOT get immersed in the cooking liquid so they can develop a yummy crust resembling the bark that’s formed when the point portion is cooked in a pit.
Ingredients (serves 6-8)
One 15-lb packer brisket Choice grade (I used an Angus Choice brisket)
SYD Hot Rub or make your own beef rub (e.g., 2 parts salt, 1/2 part lemon pepper, 1/2 part white pepper, 1/2 part black pepper, 1 part granulated garlic, 1/2 part brown sugar, and 1 part chili powder)
For the pot roast portion of the recipe, cut up 1/2 cup celery, 1/2 cup carrots, half onion, and 2 Russet potatoes.
- Trim all the fat from the point portion of the packer brisket
- Separate the point from the flat portion
- Trim the fat cap on the flat portion until only about 1/8 inch of the fat cap remains
- Cut the point into two equal pieces. Ditto for the flat portion
- Sprinkle a medium coat of SYD Hot rub (or your fav beef rub) evenly on all four pieces of meat
- Place the two lean (flat) pieces on the bottom and two fatty (point) pieces on top. You have 4 pieces of meat stacked in the crock-pot.
NOTE: As the meat cooks, the juices will fill the crock pot up so the flat pieces will be completely submerged. The liquid will braise the flat in the beef au jus and give it a lot of flavor. The two point-pieces are above the liquid so they dry out and form a crust. If the liquid rises too high, use a turkey baster to remove excess beef au jus so the point does not become submerged.
- Turn crock-pot on High and you will have yummy beef goodness in about 8 hours
- After reaching desired tenderness (poke with a wooden skewer or fork), remove the point and keep warm
- Use a turkey baster to suck out excess oil from the crock pot.
- Carefully remove the tender flat and place your pot roast vegetables into the crock-pot and cook for 1 hour or to the tenderness you like (I cheat and microwave my vegetables first to speed up the cooking process)
- Cut the flat into chunks and toss back into the crock-pot once the vegetable are tender. Taste and adjust seasonings. Remove and serve. I like to cook it the day before and refrigerate. I reheat to serve as it always tastes better the next day
- Cut the point into cubes and brush on a little barbecue sauce and enjoy the little cubes of beefy goodness!