Golden rendered fat on brisket

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Original poster
Oct 11, 2021
Just curious if you guys have been able to get the golden rendered fat cap on a brisket? Mine are usually whitish still. Have a reverse flow offset smoker I built based off of daves formula. I've seen some videos online where they get that and I'm just curious how to go about it. Thanks!
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Usually 12 hr+ and I usually start out at 225 then bump up to 250. I have gone to 270 as well.
Does it need to be more of an ⅛inch or ¼? Would the low and slow 225 temp achieve it better or sa more of the 270 temp?
What I've always heard and done, is trim the fat cap to 1/4" . Not always easy to do. But my experience is the thicker the fat, the less its going to render.

And there's also two types of fat, the hard fat and the soft pillowy fat. The hard fat won't render.

Strictly my opinion, but I think the higher temp will render the fat better. Its been a lot of years since I smoked a brisket at lower than 250.
Usually I start out at 225 for like 3 hrs, 2 hrs at 250 and then finish off at 270ish.
Part of what renders that fat better is the convection that a traditional offset gives you. Also, higher heat renders fat better. But I'm sure people do it in reverse flows fine. Might take some slightly different approach. Something like the boat method helps because you are leaving the fatcap exposed longer.
Is there anyway to get better convection in a reverse? Also I have wrapped before in the past, but lately I've been leaving it unwrapped to get a better bark. Which I have been getting a better bark set up.
I have no idea. Maybe someone with a reverse flow can chime in but I've seen briskets off reverse flow pit with great fat rendering. I've gotten decent fat render even on my WSM which has very little airflow, but it just seems more effortless on my Franklin pit. What I would do is start off slow like you are, but bump up the heat even higher once you hit the stall. Maybe try a foil boat to protect the bottom from the reverse flow plate. During the stall, the evaporative cooling from the liquid coming to the surface of the meat will protect it from the high heat but you'll be hitting that fat on the surface harder and should get better rendering of fat.
I love me some fat cap on my brisket. I got all into the super comp trim style for a bit but I missed that quarter inch of artery clogging yumminess so much that phase didn't last long at all. I'll only trim a little, unless I choose poorly and end up with a fat cap over 1/2 inch. Down anywhere between a 1/4 - 3/8 is where it's at on the trim.

I don't know Sh!t from shinola when it comes to reverse flow cookers though. I'd drill a hole in the firebox and fab a sliding cover for it and piddle around with airflow if it was me, but I'm half redneck, half hillbilly, and 10% coonbutt. When I built a homemade smoker my hardest hill to climb over was discovering that I did not have enough air flowing through it. My sliding cover for my firebox was a thin concrete block as my firebox was ground level and sometimes I'd have to leave a 3" gap to get smoke and heat rolling how I liked it. More airflow = more fuel consumed but I didn't care - I wanted it to taste how I wanted it to taste. I was blessed to have an almost endless supply of free pecan though, so I know my circumstances weren't typical. is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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