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First Whole Packer Brisket Tonight!

I'm doing my first whole packer brisket tonight--almost 17 pounds.  I've only done flats previously.  I'm nervous since my neighbors bought the meat for a big gathering tomorrow night, and I don't want them ordering pizza after a night/days work.  I plan to smoke at 225 for as long as it takes over pecan wood chunks.  Any suggestions as to how long that might be, based on the size of the cut?  Any other suggestions?  I'm not inclined to foil during the cook, but if the consensus is that I should, well I suppose I'll listen...

Thanks y'all.  -Jeff
Eggin', craft beer and good cigars.  Tampa, Florida


  • 17lbs. trimmed?
    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
  • I haven't done any trimming yet, but it doesn't appear that it will need too much.  The package says it's 16.86 pounds.  I'll post some pics along the way.  
    Eggin', craft beer and good cigars.  Tampa, Florida
  • DIADDIAD Posts: 187
    I did a 10lb trimmed packer recently. It took 16 hours at 230-250 for most of the time. No foil. Very good! Your neighbors will love it. Keep us posted
    Chester, MD
  • grege345grege345 Posts: 3,515
    Few things here. Clean egg totally and fill with lots of lump. Timing is going to be hard to nail. Even if it cooks at 1.5 hours a lb. it's gonna take 22 hours. But who know it might cook faster. I only use foil if it later absolutely necessary to get things done in time
    LBGE& SBGE———————————————•———————– Pennsylvania / poconos

  • MaskedMarvelMaskedMarvel Posts: 2,838
    Set the lump,so that it kind of catty corners the air holes to prevent them from clogging as long as possible. Fill lump and chunks up to the very top of the firebox. Don't foil during the cook. At 225* your brisket could take 20 hours easily. Might be less. Might be more. Shoot for 20, and plan on a three hour FTC. You can go longer or shorter FTC, but three hours is the median. Slice against the grain. Take pics.
    Large BGE and Medium BGE
    36" Blackstone - Greensboro!

  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 24,700
    Would that I had the answer-but each hunk of beef cooks at its own pace.  225*F on the dome will initially mean you are running no more than 190*F on the cooking grid and the gap closes the longer the dome is closed.  Since I'm not in the line of fire, I would run around 280-300*F or so on the dome and figure around 1- 1.3  hours/# for the cook.  You can easily FTC (foil, towels and cooler) for 4 hours so plan to finish early and then use FTC or more cook time to punch it home.  FWIW-

    Louisville; "indeterminate Jim" here.  Rolling smoke in the neighbourhood. # 38 for the win.  Life is too short for light/lite beer!
  • Here's an update.  Even after trimming the brisket (which I think I did an adequate job?), it was still too long to fit into the LBGE.  I took some advice from a local competition bbq'er who suggested I cut it in half to fit.  I then injected both pieces with a mix of John Henry's Cuz'n Buddy's Marinade and Shiner Bock beer.  The remaining injection was poured into the pan with the point section.  Both pieces were then dusted generously with John Henry's Texas Brisket Rub.  

    I've already started drinking beer because I'm kinda regretting cutting the whole packer in half.  Which piece should I put on the top rack?  Any other suggestions?  I'm not planning to put on the LBGE for a few more hours.  
    Eggin', craft beer and good cigars.  Tampa, Florida
  • danv23danv23 Posts: 926
    I have yet to have someone tell me my method didn't work.  Keep the drip pan from drying out.

    The Dude: This is a very complicated case, Maude. You know, a lotta ins, lotta outs, lotta what-have-you's. And, uh, lotta strands to keep in my head, man. Lotta strands in old Duder's head. Luckily I'm adhering to a pretty strict, uh, drug regimen to keep my mind, you know, limber.

    Walter Sobchak: Nihilists! *uck me. I mean, say what you want about the tenets of National Socialism, Dude, at least it's an ethos. 

    Cumming, GA

    Eggs - XL, L, Small

    Gasser - Weber Summit 6 Burner

  • ElCapitanElCapitan Posts: 154
    @JeffC, while cutting it into two parts is a solution and you can do that for awhile but you need to take the moment to point out to the Mrs that you probably need an XL.  Can't miss opportunities to make that pitch.

    XL Owner
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 17,629
    edited April 2014
    @JeffCowley‌! Cut in half? No need (I have been able to fit a 19# trimmed brisky in my LBGE no problem) drape over a rib rack , over a HDAF wrapped brick anything but, don't cut in half. Once it shrinks you can remove whatever you used to drape it over. That's just an opinion and you know how those go ;-). Will await pic results. Good luck.
    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
  • cazzycazzy Posts: 9,136
    danv23 said:

    I have yet to have someone tell me my method didn't work.  Keep the drip pan from drying out.

    Who is the "someone" you're referring to?
    Just a hack that makes some $hitty BBQ....
  • cazzycazzy Posts: 9,136 time, put a brick or rack under it instead of cutting it in half.

    Anxious to see the results. I'm routing for ya!
    Just a hack that makes some $hitty BBQ....
  • Yes, I've already made my case for an XL BGE with the wife.  She didn't appear too amused.  

    I won't be cutting it in half again.  The brisket went on at 6pm last night.  At 5am this morning I wrapped both pieces in heavy foil and placed back on the egg, as they were both reading about 165 IT.  At 9am this morning I pulled off the egg and FTC'd them.  The IT temp was right at 200 in both pieces, and the thermo went in very smooth with little resistance.  

    We were planning on dinner tonight, but it looks like its gonna be a late lunch.  We'll see.  I'll post pics.
    Eggin', craft beer and good cigars.  Tampa, Florida
  • Was wrapping part of your original plan? That speeds up the cook. Sounds like you were in decent shape to have those ready for dinner if you had left them unwrapped (and maybe bumped you temp if you were still at 225*).
    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
  • Wrapping was part of my original plan, but with hindsight I shouldn't have wrapped them.  Thankfully everyone is OK with a late lunch.  And this way I'll be in bed early tonight.
    Eggin', craft beer and good cigars.  Tampa, Florida
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