Brisket Questions


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Mar 3, 2021
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I have a Memphis Ultimate Smoker Grill and love it. I use all three cooking compartments regularly, so I'm grilling with propane, grilling & smoking with briquets, and using the electric smoker. All kinds of meats - beef, pork, fowl - are coming out great...except briskets. The brisket cook time seems way too short and the meat is not as tender as it should be. I smoke the flat at 225 degrees and I've experimented with doing the foil wrap when the meat hits anywhere between 140 and 165 degrees. At first I started taking the meat off when it hit 205, but it was overcooked, so now I take it off at 195 and it's always done. Here's what's really puzzling me, though, and why I think it's not more tender: the meat finishes in 6-7 hours. Everything I read tells me that it should take anywhere from 13-18 hours. I've tried lower smoking temperatures, but then the meat just seems to get tougher and the smoke time doesn't get much longer. I've tried briskets on both the briquet side of the grill and the electric smoker and the experience always is the same: a really short smoke time, a brisket that is done and flavorful, but just not very tender. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? Thanks for your help!
Just a guess, but the fat content or lack there of could be the culprit. Have you ever tried a prime???
I appreciate the thought. I've never tried the Prime and it might be worth a shot. In terms of the fat, I've tried smoking with the fat side up, the fat side down, and with a lot of the fat trimmed off and it doesn't seem to make much difference in terms of smoking time or finished temp...just a difference in flavor.

My son smokes his brisket flats just about the same way I do on his pellet smoker. He uses the Choice cut, smokes at 225, takes the meat out at 205 degrees after about 15 hours, and it's great. It just makes no sense to me that my briskets are cooking in less than half the time when I'm smoking at the same temp.
Have you used a thermometer to make sure that the display temp is correct? Sounds to me like the actual temp is hotter than your unit is reading.
Big packers will take 12 to 16 but 8 or 10 lb flats i usually end up about 45 to 50 min per lb if and when it stalls at 160 to 165 i wrap. take off at 205 and wrap it in a towel and rest it in a cooler for half an hour
did a fatty flat 8lb for 14 hr started at 225 it moved to fast so I back down the temp to 200 it came out great try cutting back on the temp and find a fatty brisket trim one side rub let sit over night in wrap in frig

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