Traeger Beef Brisket – Recipe and Cooking Guide

Hey Smokers, and welcome to my post where we will run through my Traeger Beef Brisket – recipe and cooking guide. As you may or may not know, this site is all about cooking on my Traeger Pro Series 22 Pellet Smoker and seeing where we can take things.

Traeger Beef Brisket - Header

Now, let’s call a spade a spade, I am very aware that I am adding to the gazillion smoked brisket posts and videos that are available on the internet. I am also aware that for the most part, everyone has a slightly different opinion on what it take to get this fickle cut of meat right.

What I have tried to do then is cook one as simply as I can and see how it works out. I will of course keep adding to this post as I do them more and more but for now, let’s just see what happens!

Check out my post: Traeger Beef Ribs

Traeger Beef Brisket: What You’ll Need

Ok, so below is what I used to cook me some smoked beef brisket my Traeger pellet smoker:


  • Whole brisket (10-12 pounds) (mine was a bit smaller that this at around the 6lb mark)
  • 1/4 cup coarse salt
  • 1/4 cup black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • Olive oil (to bind)

You can of course add anything you like to the rub. I used a simple SPG however again, if you want to add it, add it – paprika, cumin, chili and brown sugar a popular here.


  • Pellet smoker
  • Meat thermometer
  • Aluminum foil or butcher paper
  • Basting brush (if applying a mop sauce) – I spritzed occasionally with Apple Cider Vinegar and water.
  • Sharp knife for trimming and slicing

Wood Pellets:

  • Mesquite or hickory wood pellets are excellent choices for beef as they impart a strong, smoky flavor. (I used the Hickory for this one – mainly cos that is what was in there – haha).

The Cooking Process

For my cook, I chose to work to basic temperature and probe feel. I was looking for a final temp of around 203F/95C as long as it probed “like butter”. I also wrapped in butcher’s paper at around 165F/73C.

1. Preparation:

  • Trim the brisket: Trim the fat cap down to about 1/4 inch thickness and remove any silver skin or excess fat from the flat muscle.
  • Apply the rub: Pat the brisket dry with paper towels, then generously apply the dry rub all over the brisket, ensuring to cover all sides evenly.

Tallow: Once you have cut away the fat, chop it into pieces and add to a good metal tray. This will go into your smoker with the meat to make your tallow.

Traeger Beef Brisket - prepared Brisket and Tallow

2. Smoke the Brisket:

  • Preheat the smoker: Preheat your pellet smoker to 225 degrees Fahrenheit (107 degrees Celsius).
  • Smoke: Place the brisket fat side up on the grill grates. Close the lid and smoke until the internal temperature of the thickest part of the brisket reaches about 165 degrees Fahrenheit (74 degrees Celsius). This usually takes about 6 to 8 hours.

I have seen many posts and videos where the pitmaster will tell you that the optimum temp is 250F/135C as will as going fat side down on a pellet smoker. I will try this all at a later time however for this cook, I did as above.

Traeger Beef Brisket - finished Brisket and Tallow in smoker

3. Wrap and Continue

  • Remove from smoker: Once the brisket reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit, remove it from the smoker and place on some butchers paper ( or in an aluminum tray if using foil).
  • Add the tallow: Pour your Tallow all over the meat and then wrap tightly.
  • Finish smoking: Return the wrapped brisket to the smoker and continue to cook until it reaches an internal temperature of 200-205 degrees Fahrenheit (93-96 degrees Celsius). This can take an additional 4 to 6 hours. The brisket is done when it feels tender and a probe inserts into it like butter.

Times here are a definitely a guide only. If you don’t have Tallow, you can always use apple cider vinegar and/or butter as well.

5. Rest the Brisket:

  • Rest: Once cooked, remove the brisket from the smoker and let it rest while still wrapped for at least 1 hour.

Again, the jury appears to be out here. Some say put it in a cooler, others on a bench – regardless – resting is a must for brisket. I simply left it in the butcher’s paper and placed on a towel in a cooler for 2 hours.

6. Slice and Serve:

  • Slice: Unwrap the brisket. Slice against the grain for the flat part and with the grain for the point part.
  • Serve: Serve the sliced brisket with your favorite sides, like coleslaw, baked beans, or potato salad.

My Results

So, as an outline of the above, I smoked it at 225°F (107°C) until it got to around the 160F mark. I did however choose to leave it for another 45 minutes or so here as I just wanted the bark to form a little more. At this point I then wrapped with tallow in butcher’s paper until it went probe tender – which was right on the 203F mark.

I then rest it wrapped but uncovered in the cooler for around 2 hours.

After the rest, it was beautifully moist. To be honest however, it was almost at pulling consistency and whilst it sliced well, it did not take much for the slices to fall apart. That said, the taste was buttery and smokey and amazing.

Traeger Beef Brisket - finished Brisket and Tallow

In fact, for all of my 12+ hours worth of work here, the whole thing was devoured in less that 15 minutes by my family – haha.

All in all, even though this is not the easiest cut to master on a smoker- and I certainly haven’t – this simple process will get you the best chance of a good result every time.

Now, feedback? Go below! haha


  • Pellet Choice: Hickory, mesquite, or oak pellets are great for brisket as they provide a strong smoke flavor that complements the robust nature of the meat.
  • Monitoring: Keep an eye on the internal temperature rather than time. Each brisket cooks differently due to size and fat content.
  • Moisture: If desired, you can mop the brisket every couple of hours before wrapping to keep it moist. Use a simple mop sauce like apple cider vinegar mixed with water, or beef broth.


So there you have it, my recipe and cooking guide for some beef brisket Traeger style. I hope it has been of assistance but as usual, if you have any questions please do not hesitate to reach out by commenting below. I would also love to hear of your own experiences, preferences or suggestions here as well.

Are there any other products you have been looking at but want to know more about? If so, please comment below and I will do my best to get some details for you.

Until next time

Have fun and get smoking!


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