Brisket Price Variations

Discussion in 'Meat Selection and Processing' started by kampmann17, Jul 12, 2015.

  1. Guys, So I am new to this whole smoking thing. Have a whole chicken in the smoker now. I have a week off of work and going to do all the smoking I can. Anyway, I was at Target the other day and they were taking 5 bucks off a $20 or more meat purchase. I saw they had a 10# packer brisket so I picked it up for about $30.

    Now I have asked two meat departments for the same thing and I have been given prices between $9/lb and $14/lb. WHAT!!! I bought the choice level meat at Target. Is there that much of a price difference in brisket. Someone help me understand.
     
  2. add2255

    add2255 Newbie

    I payed 3.11 for my last packer
     
  3. b-one

    b-one Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    There will be differences with the grading of the meat and what the shops that sell the meat think they can get for it. We have a grass fed butcher and there prices are crazy I'll buy the cheaper meat and not know what I'm missing for the most part.
     
  4. jcbigler

    jcbigler Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    The last brisket I did was $2.96/lb, which is what Wal-Mart has been selling them for here lately. That's down about a $1/lb from about 6 or 8 months ago. 

    But, I rarely buy expensive beef. 
     
  5. Okay, thanks guys. One of the butchers was a grass fed one. Still, a 500% increase seems a bit high. I just wanted to make sure a brisket is a brisket. Thanks and I will start shopping those cheap guys a bit more. Once I get good at it then the good stuff but not until then.
     
  6. Thanks for the info.  I had no idea Walmart sold these.

    Went to the one near work just to check and hot damn - $2.96/lb and they looked pretty decent.  Most between 13-18 lbs.  Some had THICK layers of fat, but some weren't too bad (I know fat is good... just hate paying for too many pounds of it when a lot will just be trimmed off).

    Too many things going on this weekend to try my first, but now I know where to get a reasonable one when I have a free weekend!  [​IMG]
     
  7. mummel

    mummel Master of the Pit

    What does Costco charge for brisket?
     
  8. costco in my area charges $5.99/lb for "brisket flat"
     
  9. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    $5.99 seems to be the lowest price around me and it can creep up to $10 just for flats at some stores. 
     
  10. mneeley490

    mneeley490 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    You can find whole packers somewhat cheaper in Costco.

    I usually get mine at Cash and Carry, which is a wholesaler that's open to the public. Right now, a packer is $3.19 lb., and for an Angus brisket it's $3.22 lb.
     
  11. phatbac

    phatbac Master of the Pit

    Last packer i bought was 3.68/lb at Walmart (pretty sure it was choice).  I have seen flats go for 5.99 and up per pound but i rarely buy a flat alone anymore unless its marked down. I have seen some of the guys on tv buy wagu beef and pay hundreds of dollars for their briskets but i think BBQ is more about taking the cheapest thing you can find and making it taste like the best thing you ever ate. Just my $0.02
     
  12. mummel

    mummel Master of the Pit

    Amen.
     
  13. why is brisket so expensive though? i thought it was a cut that nobody wanted.

    can it be used for anything else besides bbq?
     
  14. michief

    michief Smoke Blower

    Brisket along with tri-tip, tongue, heart, beef ribs with no meat whatsoever left on them all used to be throw away and cheap, then BBQ got popular, 384 TV shows dedicated to it appeared and now you have to mortgage your kids for a weekend smoke.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2015
  15. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

     You forgot about Ox tail and chicken wings. 20 years ago we would get the butchers to save the chicken wings for us in a 5 gallon bucket for crab bait. they would give them to us.  ox tails were 15 - 20 c a lb . now ox tail is $6.99 lb and wings are pushing 3 bucks. / lb.
     
  16. mneeley490

    mneeley490 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Ha! That's exactly what my grandfather used to do. He knew a butcher at the local grocery store that would give him unwanted chicken wings, and in return, my grandfather would give him a couple crabs the next day. I haven't thought about that in many years. eman, thanks for reviving that memory!
     
  17. gpb11

    gpb11 Meat Mopper

    I've only seen flats so far at Costco, typically in the $5.49/lb range.  I keep looking, but no luck so far.

    Walmart last week had whole packers at $2.96/lb but the two they had were tiny and seemed to have a lot of fat (relatively).  Sam's next door was $3.28 but had decent sized ones with less apparent trimming needed. 
     
  18. So, my guess is that they aren't selling some of the more expensive ones to normal folk? Maybe holding them back for restaurants and food trucks? Regardless, Thanks for everyone's opinions... I will be making my first Brisket tomorrow.
     
  19. smoke-daddy

    smoke-daddy Newbie

    CT
    Thats what I paid for my last "grass fed angus" brisket at a butcher.  I think it was $9 actually. Not that I feel I need that expensive of a cut but up in the North East I can't find anywhere else to get them. 
     
  20. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    A few weeks back, Mrs. Red stumbled upon a meat sale at our Wal-Mart...they were selling packers for $1 per pound!  Now granted...they were only select grade.  But at a dollar a pound, she couldn't resist...she bought 4 of them in the 12-15 lb. range.  So for roughly the same price we usually pay for a single packer, we have enough brisket in the freezer to last til Christmas.  I smoked the first of these last weekend and it was great!  Maybe a choice grade or prime grade woulda been better...but not THAT much better.

    Red
     

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