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Brisket Question-Flat Cut? Packer Cut?

GeorgiaBornGeorgiaBorn Posts: 178
edited 3:48AM in EggHead Forum
Hey everyone. I am having some friends over Saturday as they have literally begged me to smoke something for them on my Egg. So, I am doing my first brisket. In the research that I have done online, I see where most, if not all people recommend only doing a packer/texas cut and NOT a flat cut brisket. Just got back from the Publix and the butcher there told me that all you are getting with a packer cut is about 3 more pounds of fat. The butcher at Kroger seemed to know exactly what I was asking for and he is ordering me a packer cut, which many websites I ran across in the last couple of days said you might have to do since grocery stores rarely carry anything but a flat cut.

So, I guess I am looking for some feedback from you fine folks. Is the packer/texas cut the way to go here? Was the Publix butcher full of it or was he right? Any advice on the correct cut of brisket you guys can give me will be greatly appreciated.


  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 22,718
    problem with supermarket flats is that when trimming them down from packers they also remove most if not all the fat layer, with the packer they are less trimmed and you get the point to cook into burnt ends as well, do a search on burnt ends
  • ShiffShiff Posts: 1,699
    I agree with fishlessman, the flats we get around here are quite trimmed and I have been much happier with smoking a packer cut. Packers are hard to come by around here, but they are available.

    Due to the extra fat, a packer brisket will be juicier.

    The burnt ends are well worth making.


    for lots of info on briskets

    and this

    for info on burnt ends

    Good luck
    Large BGE
    Barry, Lancaster, PA
  • Defiantly go with packer cut. Just like hamburger, if you want flavor you need some fat. We call the fat end stringy beef and it's the moist part. My group usually eats this part first and we use the flat for chopped beef. You will readily tell the difference when you get your packer cut. The thin end is the flat. When you cut your brisket, the grain of the flat runs different from the stringy beef. Slice until you see the two different grains then slice the top half off (there will be a layer of fat between) then slice each piece across grain. I hate to tell you but I seldom have to pay more than $1 a pound for packer cut brisket as I catch them on sale and fill the freezer. Good luck and please post your results with pictures if possible.
  • FidelFidel Posts: 10,172
    The butcher at Publix must not know that a packer cut brisket will contain two distinct and separate muscles - one is commonly referred to as the flat and the other as the point (sometimes also called the deckle or nose). The flat generally makes up about 70-80% of the mass of the packer cut brisket, the remainder being the point and the fat cap.

    The point is fattier, but also more tender and flavorful in my opinion.

    You can do just fine cooking a flat cut brisket, but packers a generally easier and a little more forgiving, especially if the fat cap remains intact.
  • Thanks again guys! Def going with the packer. Also thanks for the tips on the burnt ends. Read a lot of information about it today and I think I have a good handle on how to make them out of the point.

    One other question that I have is the time it takes to smoke this hunk of meat. Most of what I read said about an hour and a half per pound at 225-230. Does that sound about right?
  • smoky bsmoky b Posts: 648
    i've had a few take longer than that even. i usually cook mine 250* dome 225* grid.

    as for flats, my thought is that if the fat cap is still relatively in tact (at least a quarter inch), thn they are not bad to cook. packers are definitely better, though.
  • ChappyChappy Posts: 198
    Publix gets the packers in. Ask to see what they have that is still in the cryo vac. They usually take the point off and sell it separate for stew or potroast. The point is the best part in my opinion. The flat is good but can easily be dried out. Good luck.
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