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Old 06-26-2011, 02:17 PM   #1
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Default WSM-Brisket-cook time-advice please

Wondering if you all can help me decide on a plan of attack for this.

Picked up my first brisket (a little over 11 pounds) and I'm planning to cook it for Tuesday night family dinner. It will only be my second cook in the 22.5 WSM so I'm just trying to figure out when I want to start cooking. Realistically, I need to have it done by about 5 PM Tuesday.

Here are my options. I have a hockey game at 10:30 Monday night, so I probably won't get home until about 12:30 A.M. Should I start my fire then, wait for the temp to stabilize, then sleep for a few hours before getting up to check it again?

The other option would be to have my wife wake me up a little before 5 when she leaves to swim and I can get started then. My only worry is that I wouldn't have enough time unless everything went perfectly, which isn't a great plan on your first brisket.

What do you guys think? If I start at around 1 AM, how long can I sleep before getting back up to check on it?
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Old 06-26-2011, 03:13 PM   #2
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I would figure roughly 1.5 hrs per pound, so 16.5 hrs. plus or minus. plan to have it ready at least 2 hrs. ahead of time, then wrap it and let it rest. All of this is assuming that you are cooking between 225, and 250.

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Old 06-26-2011, 04:58 PM   #3
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I will say I just cooked my first brisket on a UDS, which I think is fairly similar to a WSM. I also cooked an 11 pounder. I got up at 5 to start and pulled it at 7:15 pm and wish I couldve let it cook a couple more hours. Next time I will start at night.
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Old 06-26-2011, 05:55 PM   #4
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I have not had the guts yet to try the overnight thing yet. I just get up early and go from there. My UDS seems to creep up after about two hours in to the smoke, my guess is because the drum gets to temp?

If I were more comfortable with the smoker holding temp I would start it the night before. You can always rest the brisket but if it aint done....it aint done.

Good Luck and lets seem some pics when it is finished!
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Old 06-26-2011, 06:17 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by 45fan View Post
I have not had the guts yet to try the overnight thing yet. I just get up early and go from there.

I might suggest a DIGI, Stoker and Ique then. I just got mine and did my first overnight cook with a DIGIq and it was great. I got up 3x to check on it but every time it was at 225! I am very pleased thus far.
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Old 06-26-2011, 06:26 PM   #6
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well, here goes.

i would say you have 2 very good options with a WSM for cooking brisket.
1st, cook it high heat. it'll take @ 7 hours from lit chimney to plate.
2nd, lo n slo. fire it up after the game, minion method. once you have it locked in, it'll stay steady for a good 6 hours anyway.
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Old 06-26-2011, 07:39 PM   #7
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If it were me I would go with the high heat method being that its only you're second cook in the WSM. That way you can monitor your cook and get some sleep the night before.

I did my first brisket yesterday in my 22.5 WSM using the high heat method for a birthday party a couple days ago and it was a huge success. Started it that morning and it was good to go for dinner at 5pm.
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Old 06-26-2011, 07:45 PM   #8
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Times vary, the one last night at 250 took just a little over 14 hours. Sometimes they are ready a few hours earlier, sometimes later. Just wait for them to get tender, where the probe slides in like a hot knife through butter.

As for timing, I plan for it to be done 6 hours early, and wrap and put in an empty cooler to maintain temp until it is time to eat. That way it is very hard to be late.
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Old 06-26-2011, 10:13 PM   #9
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I have been cooking briskets at 300-350 sometimes even hotter.

Much quicker time.

Some like to cook it that hot until done others foil it at 160-170 and then take it out
until it 190-210.

I like to stick a fork in it when it is done.

Simple and reliable.
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Old 06-30-2011, 01:18 PM   #10
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I did two this week on an Old New Braunfels......started it at 11PM and finished it around noon the nest day with temps between 2225 and 250. Let it rest in a cooler until serving at 5Pm and it was hot and juicy.
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Old 06-30-2011, 01:36 PM   #11
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Like Brian N Maine said, I would count on at least 1.5 hours per pound, but to be safe you mine as well plan a couple extra hours in there. I've had briskets that cook almost perfectly to the 1.5 hours per lb and others that have taken 3-4 extra hours to finish. When it's done you can always rest it but if it isn't you can either eat tough brisket or wait.
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Old 06-30-2011, 01:38 PM   #12
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Start it before the game, check on it when you get home, then let it go over night, should be dome around 2:00
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Old 06-30-2011, 03:32 PM   #13
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I would start it early as I could and plan on pulling it around 12-2 in the afternoon. Put it in a cooler with towels for as long as you need to. It will stay hot for 6-8 hours in the cooler.
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Old 06-30-2011, 05:30 PM   #14
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I also recommend getting started earlier, why risk the chance of an under cooked brisket?

BTW, does anybody notice a difference in cook times between select and choice/prime briskets? I do mostly choice briskets on my Bubba kegs and never had one go over 10 hours with temps averaging 275*.
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Old 06-30-2011, 06:11 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Jaskew82 View Post
I might suggest a DIGI, Stoker and Ique then. I just got mine and did my first overnight cook with a DIGIq and it was great. I got up 3x to check on it but every time it was at 225! I am very pleased thus far.

Now that I have an iQue, I'm not at all nervous about an overnight smoke.

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