Sweet and Smoky Beef Brisket


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An easy, oven braised brisket that’s the perfect combination of sweet and smoky, thanks to the dry spice rub, liquid smoke, coffee and molasses. After a few hours in the oven, you’ll have juicy, tender beef brisket that everyone will love.

An easy, oven braised brisket that's the perfect combination of sweet and smoky. After a few hours in the oven, you'll have juicy, tender beef brisket.

Beef Brisket Recipe

Earlier today I posted the brisket dry rub that I use on this brisket recipe. I’ve learned in my food blogging journey that sometimes recipe elements need to be separated, so that you guys can find them when you’re searching. For instance, if you’re smoking or grilling your beef brisket outdoors all you need is the dry rub and you’re good to go. So click over to that and enjoy.

If you don’t have a smoker or grill (like me, currently) then you’ll need this full recipe for the most delicious and easy beef brisket that’s braised in the oven. This brisket recipe is great for those of you who want all that sweet and smoky flavor but perhaps live in an apartment or urban environment. Yep, you too can have amazing brisket.

An easy, oven braised brisket that's the perfect combination of sweet and smoky. After a few hours in the oven, you'll have juicy, tender beef brisket.
An easy, oven braised brisket that's the perfect combination of sweet and smoky. After a few hours in the oven, you'll have juicy, tender beef brisket.

Tips to Flavor and Tenderize Beef Brisket

The dry rub is a combination of maple sugar and smoky spices. But this recipe gets kicked up a notch with the addition of liquid smoke, coffee, molasses, apple cider vinegar and Worcestershire sauce. When all this liquid is wrapped tightly with the brisket and cooked low and slow, you’re rewarded several hours later with flavorful, tender, fall apart beef brisket.

So let’s chat about the recipe. I mention on the dry rub recipe why I don’t use brown sugar, but you can see below we’ve added the molasses back in (sans white sugar). The liquid smoke imparts that outdoor smokiness flavor without being cooked outdoors and the apple cider vinegar helps to tenderize a typically tough cut of meat.

You know what else tenderizes the brisket? Freshly brewed black coffee. If you watched my recent YouTube video, you saw how I brew coffee in my Chemex – it’s the best. And coffee is great for brisket because it’s acidic and the natural enzymes in coffee break down muscle fibers in beef. So brew a cup of coffee in the morning, then save a little for this recipe.

An easy, oven braised brisket that's the perfect combination of sweet and smoky. After a few hours in the oven, you'll have juicy, tender beef brisket.
An easy, oven braised brisket that's the perfect combination of sweet and smoky. After a few hours in the oven, you'll have juicy, tender beef brisket.

When it comes to the Worcestershire sauce, if you’re gluten-free like me, please do read labels. Many brands of Worcestershire sauce are NOT gluten-free as they contain soy sauce or malt vinegar. So you may be wondering, is the Worcestershire sauce really needed? If you can’t find a gluten-free version, then definitely omit, but I think there’s just something about this sauce that imparts that traditional beef brisket flavor.

How Long to Cook Beef Brisket

Remember that brisket takes several hours to cook (approximately one hour 15 minutes at 250 degrees fahrenheit per pound of beef), plus some extra time for letting the meat rest once it’s removed from the oven. So plan ahead.

If you’ve removed the brisket from the oven and it’s not fork tender, more than likely, it’s undercooked. Just pop it back in the oven. You could also slice the brisket after the allotted time and cook for additional 30 minutes to an hour, with the slices laying in the juices, to make it tender.

And lastly, brisket becomes even more tender after it’s been refrigerated overnight in the juices, then reheated in the oven. So don’t fret if it’s your first time making brisket and it’s not as tender as that restaurant favorite of yours. There are several ways to resurrect it and be rewarded with a tasty, tender, flavorful brisket.

Serve this beef brisket recipe up with my easy Cucumber Salad (pictured), Mashed Potatoes or Roasted Potatoes, for a meal that everyone will love.

More Delicious Meat Recipes

An easy, oven braised brisket that's the perfect combination of sweet and smoky. After a few hours in the oven, you'll have juicy, tender beef brisket.
An easy, oven braised brisket that's the perfect combination of sweet and smoky. After a few hours in the oven, you'll have juicy, tender beef brisket.

Sweet and Smoky Beef Brisket

5 from 5 votes
Prep: 30 minutes
Cook: 7 hours
Total: 7 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


This oven roasted beef brisket is sweet and smoky and full of flavor. It’s definitely my favorite beef brisket recipe!



  • Preheat your oven to 250 degrees fahrenheit.
  • Liberally apply the dry rub on both sides of the brisket. If the brisket was refrigerated, let it sit for 30 minutes or until it comes to room temperature.
  • Whisk all of the liquid ingredients together and pour into a roasting pan. Add the brisket to the roasting pan and cover tightly with aluminum foil.
  • Cook for 6 hours or until an instant read thermometer reaches 190 degrees fahrenheit.
  • Remove the brisket from the oven and let rest for 30 minutes before slicing. Then, slice against the grain for the most tender pieces of brisket.

Lisa’s Tips

  • Depending on the size of your brisket, you’ll want to cook it for approximately one hour and fifteen minutes per pound of brisket.
  • Please make note of my comment above regarding Worcestershire sauce, as many do contain gluten. For a gluten-free version I recommend this one.
  • When it comes to liquid smoke, this all natural hickory smoke is my favorite.


Calories: 855.3kcal | Carbohydrates: 16.3g | Protein: 59g | Fat: 60.2g | Saturated Fat: 23.6g | Cholesterol: 212.1mg | Sodium: 2040.3mg | Fiber: 2.1g | Sugar: 7.1g
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: beef brisket, beef brisket recipe, best beef brisket
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

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  1. Well it’s in the oven as we speak so fingers crossed. I intend to refrigerate overnight and serve to visitors tomorrow. Just wondering if I should re-heat in the juice or do them separate? Any suggestions, temp and timing?

  2. Hi, I like the idea of refrigerating it the second day, resurrection soup was always a family favourite, so I can see this working. However, how long and at what temp would you recommend to reheat? I’m in Scotland and promised this to a texan friend at the weekend so wish me luck :)

  3. Great recipe! The black coffee is a surprising addition. I “winged” the dry rub a bit to match my Family’s taste but followed the sauce exactly.  The results were so good – I had to print the recipe – it’s going into the Family Cookbook as a “keeper”!!5 stars

    1. You can find it in my brisket dry rub recipe! Just search for it on my website, or you can find it linked within the post.

  4. Gorgeous but I felt it needed a touch more sweetness,wasn’t sure if I should add more maple sugar or a touch of honey,, suggestions would be appreciated it’s for a dinner party on Tuesday.

  5. I love brisket and this sounds delicious. What can I substitute for the molasses? It is something  I never buy. Thanks.

    1. Hi Trudy, Not sure where you are but I’m in the UK, couldn’t get Molasses and then googled and found ‘treacle’ is the same thing so I used that. They also have recipes for making your own molasses by boiling sugar, cream of tartare and lemon juice.

  6. I cooked my 9lb beef brisket in an Orion cooker for 4 hours. It is so tender that I had trouble getting it out of the cooker. Juicy and delicious.5 stars

  7. So excited to make this tomorrow – we are on the island of Aruba so finding all the ingredients is taking some time :) Two questions … do you think this would work in a dutch oven as opposed to a casserole dish? If I can’t find maple sugar do you think I could use real maple syrup in the wet ingredients instead?
    Thanks SO much for sharing all your delicious ideas :)

    1. Hi Lindsay – I’m jealous you’re in Aruba! Yes, I think this would work fine in a Dutch oven. And I think the maple swap sounds fine as well. Hope it turns out for you!

    2. Another place to buy pure maple sugar is Welch’s Maple. They have a great product, reasonably priced and will ship anywhere. I have been purchasing Maple syrup, maple sugar and maple cream from Welch’s for years and have always been pleased.

  8. I overdosed on brisket tonight because I couldn’t stop eating it.  This was the best brisket I have ever had.  I’m so glad I found your site and your recipes!!5 stars

  9. So when I started browsing your website on eating healthy, and anti-inflammatory, I figured my days of brisket and pulled pork were over. Glad to see they are not. I love cooking salmon, vegetables, chicken, and yes, brisket and pulled pork on my pellet grill.

    1. It’s all about balance here at Downshiftology! I love pulled pork from time to time when I need a break from chicken or salmon.

  10. It was decided that brisket would be the family Christmas dinner this year despite the fact that no one had any idea how to make it. I was certainly relieved when I found out Downshiftology had me covered! This is delicious and easy to make especially if you have the day at home.5 stars

  11. Lisa,
    I LOVE all your recipes. I’d love to make this one next week and would like to know which liquid smoke you recommend (the link you left in your tips section is no longer working). We are Gluten Free. Thanks in advance!

      1. Thank you! I got the liquid smoke. Making it tomorrow. I’m a little hesitant to include coffee in this recipe as my 3 year old will be eating it. What do you think?

      2. Hi Lana – the coffee flavor is not strong at all, but if you prefer, you can leave it off.

  12. Hi Lisa, the Brisket sounds delicious!!! We want to do the recipe on the grill, how do you recommend we do it?

    1. Hi Naomi – I don’t typically cook brisket on the grill, but it seems most would sear it for about 20 minutes each side on a hot grill, then reduce the temperature and cook it low and slow until it reaches about 200F with a thermometer.

  13. This is the perfect summer dinner! Love the flavors from the rub that give this beef brisket a taste that will be a big hit! Great tip for using coffee to tenderize the brisket!5 stars

  14. This rub you used sounds so good. I would have never thought about adding coffee but sounds like a wonderful idea.

  15. omg yes! I wanted to make brisket sometime this week and I had no idea how I would deal with the hunk of meat so I am loving this recipe! I had no clue that coffee tenderizes the meat! I love these tips! :)

  16. Although I do have a smoker AND grill (both expertly wielded by the hubster), a beef brisket that I can braise in the oven is an absolute COUP for horrid, cold days. I love the idea of using coffee to tenderize the meat. This recipe is a winner!