View Full Version : Brisket cook 1 day ahead

08-30-2019, 06:20 AM
I'm looking to serve brisket around 2pm on Sunday. I'm not crazy about an overnight cook with a long hold. Could I put it on around 6am on Saturday, finish it between 6pm and 10pm on Saturday, put it in the refrigerator, and then re-heat the whole thing on Sunday without loosing much quality? My oven goes as low as 150. I'm thinking I could put it in at 150 around 10am (or noon?) on Sunday so it has plenty of time to get to a nice temperature. I'm talking about a 15lb packer. Thoughts? Thank you!

creek bottom
08-30-2019, 06:43 AM
I've done this a few times. Cook it until done, put in foil pan and cover tightly with foil. Re-heat before serving with the foil still on pan. Turned out perfect and got rave reviews...

08-30-2019, 07:23 AM
Got a vacuum sealer and a sous vide? My go to for cookong brisket in advance is to slice, portion into bags, seal, then reheat when ready to eat in the sous vide at 145 -150*. The pan method probably works well too but the advantage to a sous vide reheat is youll never overcook it.

08-30-2019, 07:40 AM
Interesting. I do have a sous vide. Wouldn't that hurt the bark? And why slice in advance? I plan on serving the whole thing.

08-30-2019, 07:52 AM
IMO - There is nothing wrong with a long cook and hold, and it's not hard to do. If you don't want to go the cooler/towel route, wrap your brisket in two layers of foil and stick it in a large aluminum pan in your oven.

My last two briskets from an overnight cook finished around 9:00 am in the morning and I held them in my oven until 5:30 pm. It took at least four or five hours for the internal temp to drop to 160, and all I had to do was turn the oven on for five or ten minutes to keep it right in that sweet hold spot of 160 degrees.

Presentation will always suffer if you cut in advance, and it can be challenging to cool down a large brisket quickly. If you want to do this stick your cooked brisket in a giant zip lock bag and submerge in ice water to chill quickly. Reheat gently with some beef stock or water.

Good luck!

08-30-2019, 09:18 AM
Interesting. I do have a sous vide. Wouldn't that hurt the bark? And why slice in advance? I plan on serving the whole thing.

I guess you don't have to, the only reason I slice in advance is so I don't have to when I go to serve it and there's really no degradation in quality for doing so. I would say vacuum seal/SV does affect the bark a little bit, but not enough to offset the convenience factor for me in most cases, and you'll still run into that to a degree reheating in a pan with some broth (steam). I don't like having a timeline bearing down on me and I cant always get up at 3 AM to make sure I can meet a deadline for serving. I would say quick chilling then reheating in SV is about 90% as good as fresh, and in most cases I am fine with that because it's still pretty delicious, I haven't had my face in a smoker all day and as a result am completely disinterested in eating BBQ, and I make better decisions without some arbitrary time hanging over my head. A lot of those benefits still hold true for extended/active/whatever holds too.

08-30-2019, 11:01 AM
Sous vide and introduce some juices into the bag before you vac seal it = succulent brisket even re-heated. There is no way you will maintain the bark in any re-heat scenario that I can think of that will be effective anyways.

Smoking Piney
08-30-2019, 03:18 PM
The path of least complexity is an overnight cook with a FTC hold to serve. You can FTC a brisket for hours and it will still be piping hot and gorgeous to slice before serving.

Brisket cooks are automatic overnights for me.

08-30-2019, 09:39 PM
Don't slice that thing ahead of time... Cook it, rest it, cool it as quick as you can to keep it safe.... Then on the day of toss it in the oven for a couple hours at 225 leaving it covered. ...I usually unwrap the last 30 or so mins to firm up that bark. Slice and should be as perfect as is she was just pulled off the smoker !


08-31-2019, 04:44 AM
Not sure why you don't like to hold.
Since your oven will go down to 150*. You can hold the brisket for as long as you like. Quite a few folks hold theirs for 10+hrs before serving. I hold a minimum of 4 hrs. I've held baby back ribs for 16 hrs due to timing and location of serving the food. Works Great!
Safe food holding zone is 140*-160*.
For me, when holding. Place your wrapped brisket (paper or foil) on a cooling rack in a hotel pan/aluminum pan, covered with foil. So there is no direct heat/hot side/direct contact with the holding pan. If that makes sense.
Using holding temps takes the stress away from your cook. As the brisket will be hot and ready to slice at what ever time you decide you want to eat.
Easy peasy.

08-31-2019, 06:09 AM
I've done up to six hour holds but this would be closer to 16 hours. That seemed too long to me but maybe I'll give it a shot. Thanks.

smoke ninja
08-31-2019, 07:45 AM
hold it. by the time you get that brisket cooled and in the fridge its gonna be time to start reheating.

anything planned for service before 2pm I cook and hold, later than that and hot and fast for the win