Traeger Smoked Brisket Recipe

Last Updated on June 10, 2022 by Anne-Marie

This smoked Traeger brisket recipe results in tender, smoky BBQ meat. Simple enough to cook for a large crowd, this recipe has a unique flavor that makes it perfect for entertaining.

Sliced Traeger smoked brisket on a wooden cutting board with knife, BBQ sauce, garnish, and napkin.

Why this recipe works

Brisket is a type of beef that’s typically smoked over hickory wood. The meat is then sliced thin and served with various side dishes.

This easy smoked brisket recipe is perfect for anyone new to smoking cuts of beef.

Don’t let the long smoke time put you off, either. This Traeger brisket recipe is simple and takes only 30 minutes to prep.

What type of smoker should you cook this on?

This was cooked on a Traeger pellet grill.

Check out my The Best Smoker Grill Guide or my electric pellet smoker review for other preferred smokers.

Smoked brisket on a wooden cutting board with jars of barbecue sauce and jalapenos.

Ingredients

  • whole packer brisket (also called flat cut brisket or packer beef brisket)

Brisket dry rub:

  • kosher salt
  • coarse ground black pepper
  • paprika

How to make this recipe

Use hickory wood pellets to get the maximum exceptional flavor in your Traeger pellet grill.

1. Preheat the smoker to 225 degrees F.

2. Combine the rub seasonings in a small bowl.

3. Trim the brisket by removing any silver skin or excess fat.

Square the edges and ends of the flat cut brisket. Flip the brisket and trim the fat cap to no more than 1/4 inch thickness.

4. Liberally sprinkle all surfaces of the brisket with brisket dry rub seasonings.

Seasoning dry rub in a small glass bowl and on a flat cut beef brisket.

5. Place brisket on the smoker with the thicker end closest to the hotter section of the smoker.

6. Close the lid and cook brisket until the internal temperature is 165 degrees F (around 8 hours).

Cooking brisket for 8 hours on a Traeger smoker.

7. Remove the brisket from the smoker and double wrap tightly with Traeger butcher paper or heavy-duty aluminum foil.

8. Return the piece of meat to the smoker. Close the lid and continue cooking at 225 degrees F until the internal temperature of the meat reaches 203 degrees F in the thickest part of the meat.

This will take another 6-8 hours of smoking. Use a quality instant-read meat thermometer, so you don’t overcook the meat.

Wrap cooked •whole packer brisket with Traeger butcher paper.

9. Remove the brisket from the smoker. Wrap brisket in plastic wrap. Then wrap it in an old beach towel or a couple of bath towels. Place it into a clean cooler to rest for one hour before slicing and serving.

10. To serve, place on a clean cutting board and slice across the grain of the point and flat muscles with a sharp knife.

11. Serve slices of brisket with your favorite BBQ sauces, bread, and sides.

12. Refrigerate any leftover brisket in an airtight container for up to three days.

Wrapped smoked brisket cooking on a Traeger smoker grill.

FAQs

How to trim the brisket

To make the perfect brisket, you have to trim it. That’s because most grocery store brisket is covered in a thick layer of fat.

If you want a good bark on your brisket, you MUST trim the excess fat off your brisket. That way, you get a nice smokey flavor.

If you have too much fat, it doesn’t render down, and the smoke won’t get to the meat. So you’ll have uneven cooking, burnt edges, and tough meat. Not good!

How to trim the fat

1. Pat the brisket with a paper towel.

2. Place it on a large cutting board with the fat side up.

3. Remove the excess fat from brisket with a sharp paring knife.

A great way to do this is to shave off thin layers at a time, so you don’t take off too much. Leave an even 1/4 inch of fat on top of the brisket.

Next, trim the silver skin

Silver skin is the large pieces of connective tissue that prevent the rub from flavoring the beef.

You can slice this off with a pairing knife or peel it away with your fingers.

How long does it take to make brisket on a Traeger?

Our method takes 14 to 16 hours of cook time on most Traeger grills.

You can cook this overnight with a high-quality pellet smoker setup that allows you to do this safely.

Or prep your pellet smoker and brisket the night before. (Cooking this for an afternoon or evening party? Count backward to determine when to start cooking.) Then set your clock early in the morning and get the smoking process going at dawn or earlier.

Set your alarm every 2-3 hours to check on things.

Sliced cooked beef brisket on a wooden cutting board with a jar of BBQ sauce.

Do you smoke brisket fat side up or down?

Some smoke with the fat side down, so the fat melts onto the smoker grill grate and flows into the drip pan.

However, we feel you should cook it with the fat layer on top. This keeps the meat moist for optimal flavor.

What else can I add to the rub?

The rub seasoning is made with simple ingredients. But you can add the following to the brisket dry rub:

  • brown sugar
  • garlic powder
  • onion powder
  • smoked paprika (instead of plain paprika)
  • ground chili pepper

You can also use your favorite Traeger rubs.

Serving sliced smoked brisket with barbecue sauce and jalapenos on a wooden cutting board with a red and white napkin.

What to serve with your smoked brisket

Traditionally, sliced juicy brisket is served with your favorite BBQ sauce or Alabama White BBQ Sauce, thick white bread, and side dishes such as:

What favorite sides are you serving with your delicious brisket masterpiece?

Yield: 18 SERVINGS

Traeger Smoked Brisket Recipe

Sliced cooked beef brisket on a wooden cutting board with a jar of BBQ sauce.

This smoked Traeger brisket recipe results in tender BBQ meat. This Traeger brisket recipe is simple and takes only 30 minutes to prep.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 16 hours
Total Time 16 hours 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 15 pound whole packer brisket
  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons coarse ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons paprika

Instructions

  1. Preheat the smoker to 225 degrees F.
  2. Combine the rub seasonings in a small bowl.
  3. Trim the brisket by removing any silver skin or excess fat. Square the edges and ends of the flat-cut brisket. Flip the brisket and trim the fat cap to no more than 1/4 inch thickness.
  4. Liberally sprinkle all surfaces of the brisket with brisket dry rub seasonings.
  5. Place brisket on the smoker with the thicker end closest to the hotter section of the smoker.
  6. Close the lid and cook the brisket until the internal temperature is 165 degrees F (around 8 hours).
  7. Remove the brisket from the smoker and double wrap tightly with Traeger butcher paper or heavy-duty aluminum foil.
  8. Return the piece of meat to the smoker. Close the lid and continue cooking at 225 degrees F until the internal temperature of the meat reaches 203 degrees F in the thickest part of the meat. Use an instant-read meat thermometer. This will take another 6-8 hours of smoking.
  9. Remove the brisket from the smoker. Wrap brisket in plastic wrap. Then wrap it in an old beach towel or a couple of bath towels. Place it into a clean cooler to rest for one hour before slicing and serving.
  10. To serve, place on a clean cutting board and slice across the grain of the point and flat muscles with a sharp knife.
  11. Serve slices of brisket with your favorite BBQ sauces, bread, and sides.
  12. Refrigerate any leftover brisket in an airtight container for up to three days.

Notes

Use hickory wood pellets to get the maximum exceptional flavor in your Traeger pellet grill.

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate Affiliate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

18

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1097Total Fat: 70gSaturated Fat: 28gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 33gCholesterol: 401mgSodium: 811mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 109g

Nutritional information is automatically calculated per the ingredients list. Serving size may not be accurate. Please double-check with your preferred nutritional app for the most accurate information.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *