Pastrami from Top Round - Temperature

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weekend smoker

Original poster
Jan 16, 2014
Southern Illinois
Cold day in So IL so I figured I would smoke some corned beef to make pastrami.  First time doing this with top round and I am concerned about the end temperature of this piece of meet.   Was planning to to to about 160.

My question is....Is it worth going higher on a top round to try to make it more tender or does is just dry it out?   Top rounds are so lean that there is no real marbling of the fat to speak of.  

Anyone have a recommendation on the end temperature of a top round pastrami?

Woodcutter, your post came across just as the Pastrami hit 160 F.  I pulled them right away.  They are peacefujlly resting in foil and a blanket now.


Pulled the three rounds at 160 - 162.  Came out great.  Had my boys and some other family over when these got done resting, and ended up with only about 2 lbs left to package for lunch meet, of the 10 I started with.  

Would have taken pictures of these sliced, but it was disappearing as fast as I could cut.

Will definitely do this smoke again

Woodcutter - thanks for the timely input.  I was going to let them to to about 175 to see if that would tenderize them, but they were great pulled off earlier. is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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