How Long To Smoke Brisket At 225°F? Best Wood Pallet For Smoking & How To Prepare and Serve

how long to smoke brisket at 225

You’re marinating your brisket for a while, and now that your smoker is all fired up, you realize that you absolutely have no idea how long to smoke brisket at 225°F. You’re panic googling and find ten different answers. Now you’re really confused. 

Well, you can avoid all that, thanks to us! In this helpful guide, we’ll teach you all you need to know about smoking brisket at 225°F (and why that’s the ideal temperature for that type of meat).

Different Types of Briskets

 There are mainly three different types of brisket, based depending on their location and composition, 

  1. Beef Brisket: A cut of meat from the breast or underside of the chest from beef or veal. It includes the superficial and pectoral muscles. 
  2. Lamb Brisket: Unlike beef brisket, lamb brisket is sliced from lamb ribs and is a favorite among those who want fattier cuts. 
  3. Pork Brisket: Pork belly and a pig cut known as pork picnic are used to make pork brisket. It contains both the lean meat from the picnic and the fatty pig belly. 
StyleSmoking Time at 225° Fahrenheit
Beef Brisket6 hours until internal temperature is
160 °F
Lamb Brisket2 hours per pound
Pork Brisket1.5 to 2 hours per pound

How Long To Smoke A Brisket Flat At 225°F?

Smoking a flat brisket (5–7 pounds) can take anywhere between 6 to 8 hours.

Cooking time varies depending on the brisket’s thickness, fat level, and specific smoking features. Monitor the internal temperature to ensure the brisket is cooked just right. When the internal temperature of the brisket flat hits 195–203°F and a meat thermometer or skewer is inserted into the meat with little effort, the meat is officially done.

Best Wood Pellet For Smoking Briskets

You can use any amount of pellets to smoke a wonderful brisket, especially if you start mixing your own pellet blends. Here are a few of the most common individual pellets, 

  1. Hickory: A robust, smoky wood that gives the meat a rich, bacon-like flavor. It’s a popular option for smoking briskets, especially in the South. Hickory can be strong, so use it wisely or mix it with gentler woods.
  2. Oak: Most popular and versatile wood with mild to strong taste. It burns hot and slowly, making it perfect for brisket smoking. It has a rich and powerful flavor profile that compliments beef.
  3. Mesquite: A powerful and distinct wood that gives the meat a deep, earthy flavor. It is popular in Texas-style barbecue and is ideal for smoking beef, especially briskets. Mesquite burns hot and quickly, so use it lightly or blend it with other woods.
  4. Cherry: This has a pleasant, somewhat sweet flavor with a fruity undertone. It emits a reddish smoke that gives the meat a nice hue. For smoking briskets, cherry wood is often combined with other woods like oak or hickory.
  5. Apple: Well-known for its mild and sweet flavor, this wood gives a subtle fruity to the meat, making it an excellent match for beef and all types of briskets. Applewood goes well with other woods, such as oak or hickory.

How To Prepare Briskets For Smoking? 

Brisket preparation for smoking involves many steps to guarantee that the flesh is seasoned, tender, and tasty. Here’s how you prepare briskets for smoking:

  1. First of all, select a high-quality brisket with nice fat marbling. Next, look for a brisket that is not heavily trimmed and has an even thickness throughout.
  2. Then, trim any excess fat from the brisket’s surface, leaving just enough fat to keep the meat juicy while smoking. Make sure to trim any tough silver skin or membrane from the brisket’s flesh side.
  3. Now it’s time for seasoning! Make a dry rub with your favorite seasonings and season the entire brisket, covering all sides. Pat the rub on the meat to help it stick.
  4. Set up the preheated smoker and check if you have enough fuel (wood pieces, charcoal or pellets) to keep temperatures stable while smoking the meat.
  5. Now it’s time to start smoking the meat!

How Long To Smoke Brisket At 225°F?

  1. Preheat your smoker to 225°F.
  2. Place the seasoned brisket on the smoker grate, fat-cap down. To keep the temperature steady, close the smoker and don’t open it too frequently.
  3. Keep a close eye on the temperature.
  4. Cook for 6 hours or until the interior temperature reaches 160°F.
  5. Take the brisket off the grill and wrap it in foil or butcher paper
  6. Then, put it back on the grill and cook for another 20 minutes or just until its internal temperature is 200 degrees.
  7. Take the brisket off the grill and let it rest for at least an hour before slicing. 

Smoking Brisket At 250°F vs 225°F

The choice between smoking at 250°F or 225°F comes from personal preference and the desired outcome. A good smoked brisket can be produced at any temperature, but smoking at 225°F offers a slower, traditional method that often delivers a tender and flavorful cut. Most pitmasters also suggest slow cooking of briskets. 

Smoking at 250°F will still give you a good brisket if you want to cook faster, but slight differences in texture and softness may exist.

How To Serve A Smoked Brisket?

There are many ways to serve a smoked brisket; serving one is a lovely experience. Here’s a guide on how to serve a delicious smoked brisket:

  • Cut the slices against the grain. The direction of the muscle fibers is referred to as the grain. Cutting opposite to those fibers is referred to as cutting against the grain.
  • Serve the delicious brisket with a variety of barbecue sauces or homemade condiments. Classic choices include  mustard-based sauces, tangy barbecue sauce with a tomato base, and spicy or vinegar-based sauces, 
  • A smoked brisket pairs fantastically with a side-dishes such as, 
  • Mac and cheese, coleslaw, potato salad, or baked beans.
  • Any type of salad, cucumber, and tomato salad, or a tangy vinegar-based slaw. 
  • Grilled or roasted veggies such as asparagus, corn, sweet potatoes, and Brussels sprouts.
  • Some warm bread and rolls would be the perfect match!

How To Present A Smoked Brisket?

Make the dining experience more engaging and Instagram-worthy by creating a visually alluring ambiance. Here are a few ideas for an aesthetic presentation of your smoked briskets :

  • Sliced brisket is best arranged on a platter or serving tray to show off its deep color, smoke ring, and bark.
  • Drizzle the briskets with some fresh honey, barbecue sauce, or honey mustard.
  • Consider topping the platter with fresh herbs like parsley or cilantro for an extra dash of freshness and visual appeal.

How Long Do Smoked Briskets Last?

Dry cooked brisket stays longer in the refrigerator for four days, but a little longer, almost two months in the freezer. However, brisket with gravy can be refrigerated for nearly two days and frozen for up to 3 months.

Common Mistakes To Avoid When Smoking Brisket At 225°F

Here are some common mistakes to avoid when you’re smoking brisket at 225°F,

  • Maintaining temperatures at 225-250°F is one of the most crucial factors while smoking a brisket. Observe with a good thermometer and make any changes necessary.
  • Using the wrong rub can also be a common mistake when smoking brisket, so choose the ingredients mindfully. Also, make sure to cover the brisket with seasoning on both sides and every corner.
  • Opening the smoker occasionally can alter the temperature and halt the cooking process. Heat and smoke leak from the smoker every time it is opened, which can increase cooking time and affect the brisket’s flavor.
  • Letting the brisket rest gives the rendered fat and liquids a chance to redistribute, guaranteeing tender, succulent results all around. So letting it cool slowly is a terrific way to rest it for at least one to two hours.
  • Buy the best-quality brisket you can afford, especially if you’re a beginner, as those cuts are a little more forgiving. 


We hope this article helped answer how long you must smoke brisket at 225°F. The brisket’s internal temperatures and tenderness should ultimately be the key factors for doneness. You can enjoy a wonderful smoked brisket cooked to perfection at 225°F by paying close attention to temperature, cooking time, and tenderness. 


1. How To Reheat Smoked Brisket?

The key to successfully reheating brisket is the same way you originally cooked it. Reheating it slowly, exactly as you did when you cooked it in the smoker, is the trick.

As you know brisket takes a while to cook, so you don’t want to ruin your feast by reheating the meat incorrectly. Nothing is worse than a perfectly smoked brisket that becomes tough, dry, and bland when you want more.

Trying to reheat brisket in the microwave will give you tough, dry, and just bad-tasting brisket. The juiciness that makes the meat tender will have evaporated off by the time the internal temperature is reached.

2. How Long To Smoke A 4 lb Brisket At 225°F?

A 4-pound brisket will take around 6 to 8 hours to cook through when smoked at 225°F. But as we know, the actual smoking time differs based on several things, like the brisket’s thickness, the smoker’s heat distribution, and the level of doneness.

And you already know to use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of your brisket to cook it thoroughly and to ensure it is tender and juicy. 

3. Are Briskets Expensive Cuts of Meat?

Yes, briskets can be pricey meat pieces, and there are various reasons why. The pricing depends on the size of the cut, its demand, its preparation and cooking time, fat content, and trim. 

However, an untrimmed beef brisket is one of the more affordable cuts. Granted, you will only get about half the weight in meat when you cook or smoke it low and slow. 

Regardless, briskets are coveted for their taste and versatility in the kitchen, even with their high price tags. They are ideal for smoking, braising, and other slow cooking techniques due to their suppleness and rich marbling, producing tasty and satisfying dishes.

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