Texas-Style Brisket


  • 1 whole fresh beef brisket (12 to 14 pounds)
  • 1/2 cup pepper
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • Large disposable foil pan
  • About 6 cups wood chips, preferably oak


  • Trim fat on the brisket to 1/2-inch thickness. Rub brisket with pepper and salt; place in a large disposable foil pan, fat side up. Refrigerate, covered, several hours or overnight. Meanwhile, soak wood chips in water.
  • To prepare grill for slow indirect cooking, adjust grill vents so the top vent is half open and the bottom vent is open only one-quarter of the way. Make 2 arrangements of 45 unlit coals on opposite sides of the grill, leaving the center of the grill open. Light 20 additional coals until ash-covered; distribute over unlit coals. Sprinkle 2 cups soaked wood chips over lit coals.
  • Replace grill rack. Close grill and allow the temperature in the grill to reach 275°, about 15 minutes.
  • Place foil pan with brisket in center of grill rack; cover grill and cook 3 hours (do not open grill). Check the temperature of the grill periodically to maintain a temperature of 275° throughout cooking. Heat level may be adjusted by opening vents to raise the temperature and closing vents partway to decrease temperature.
  • Add an additional 10 unlit coals and 1 cup of wood chips to each side of the grill. Cook brisket, covered, 3-4 hours longer or until fork- tender (a thermometer inserted in brisket should read about 190°); add additional coals and wood chips as needed to maintain a grill temperature of 275°.
  • Remove brisket from the grill. Cover tightly with foil; let stand 30-60 minutes. Cut brisket across the grain into slices.