Smoking Small (Brisket & Tri-Tip)

Discussion in 'Beef' started by jdrouin, Jun 15, 2013.

  1. Hi Everyone, and happy Fathers' Day.

    Tomorrow I'm going to smoke a small brisket flat (1.8 lbs) and small tri-tip (1.2 lbs), as well as a small-ish (ca. 14") rack of baby back ribs. Given that the beef pieces are so small, how long do you think they'll take to cook (at 225*-240*), and what do you guys recommend for trimming?

    I'm thinking that if I leave on a little more of the fat cap than usual, it might help the meat to cook slower and become more tender. If anyone has experience prepping and smoking such small pieces of beef, I'd appreciate any advice.


  2. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  3. so ms smoker

    so ms smoker Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

      Im not sure the 1 1/2 to 2 hours per pound will hold true on that small a piece of meat. Be sure you have a good instant read thermo handy to check the IT. Let us know how it comes out.

  4. Thanks for these replies. I use a vertical charcoal/water smoker (Brinkmann), and cooked the brisket at 225*-250* for 5.5 hours, at which point we got torrential rains. The internal temp was 172*, so I foiled it and finished in the oven to an internal temp of 185*, letting it rest for about 45 minutes before slicing and serving.

    The brisket turned out flavorful but not tender. I left the fat cap on, scored and placed face-down. It was a really lean (internally) piece of brisket, so the lack of fat marbling might have contributed to dryness/firmness.

    Maybe if I did the same but placed the fat cap up, it would help to baste the meat.

    This was my first time doing brisket, and it strikes me that in order to get that tender, flavorful quality you probably need to use the whole cut. Problem is my smoker is too small to fit one.

  5. id'a taken that small brisket a little longer. to about 190ish. as for the tri tip, well hell you can do damn near anything to that piece of meat and itll be great.

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