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Overhead image of a partially sliced Coffee-Rubbed Smoked Brisket surrounded by sides and condiments.

Coffee-Rubbed Smoked Brisket

Begin this recipe 15 hours ahead to allow for proper smoking.
Prep time does not include smoker set-up.
Course dinner
Cuisine North American
Keyword brisket, smoking
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 hours
resting time 1 hour
Total Time 13 hours 10 minutes
Servings 15
Calories 573kcal


  • smoker
  • peach butcher's paper (or brown butcher's paper)


  • 12-15 pound (5 1/2-7 kilos) brisket trimmed, deckel fat removed

For the Coffee Spice Rub

  • 1/3 cup (96 grams) kosher salt
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons black pepper
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons granulated garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons espresso coffee medium grind
  • 2 tablespoons granulated onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper optional


  • Begin by preparing your smoker. Heat it to 225°F (107°C), then add your preferred smoking wood to the glowing coals.
    *See post for detailed smoker set-up instructions.*

Season the Brisket

  • While you're waiting for the smoker to come up to temperature, season the brisket.
  • Combine the coffee, granulated garlic, pepper, granulated onion powder, kosher salt, and cayenne pepper with a whisk in a mixing bowl.
    Set the rinsed and trimmed brisket on a large sheet pan (or a piece of foil). Rub the coffee spice rub all over the brisket, making sure to cover the entire surface area with it.

Smoke the Brisket to 150°F (66°C)

  • Insert a meat thermometer probe into the thickest part of your brisket (the point).
  • Position the brisket on the smoker's grate so the point is in the center of the circle (or positioned closer to your firebox) or the hottest part of the smoker.
    Place the fattiest side of the brisket up. The fat will begin to melt and flavor and baste the meat below. 
    Close the smoker and allow the brisket to smoke for 7-8 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches 150°F(66°C). 

Wrap and Finish Smoking the Brisket

  • Once the brisket reaches the first internal temp of 150°F (66°C), remove it from the smoker (making sure to close the smoker to retain the heat).
    Wrap the brisket in peach butcher paper like you're wrapping a present.
  • Return the wrapped brisket to the smoker with the edges down so the weight of the brisket keeps the paper tightly sealed.
    Continue smoking the brisket for another 5-6 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches 200°F (93°C).
  • Remove the brisket from the smoker and allow it to rest, uncovered, but under a foil tent, for at least one hour after before slicing.
  • Once the brisket has rested, slice the meat 1/4-inch thick across, not along, the grain using a long, thin carving knife.
    You can also chop the slices if you plan to make sandwiches or use the brisket for other recipes. 

Serve Texas-Style

  • Lay a fresh sheet of peach paper onto a large cutting board.
    Place the brisket slices in the center and arrange condiments like pickled jalapeños, raw onion slices, mustard, pickles, slices of white bread, Potato Salad, and Baked Beans.


Brisket-Picking Tips:

  • If you want a smaller amount of smoked brisket, you can go with just a point or a flat. The flat will take less time to cook because it's thinner. It's also a better option if you plan to slice your brisket since it has more connective tissue, which holds it together. The brisket point is ideal if you plan to chop or shred your brisket.
  • Select a brisket that "flops" in the package. This is an indication that the connective tissue in the meat is beginning to break down.
  • Remove the grey-ish, bark-like meat and discard this edge because it's useless and unsightly.
  • If there's a lot of hard fat on the sides or top, trim away all but 1/2-inch of it. You want softer fat, which melts, as opposed to hard fat, which sits there.

Coffee Spice Rub:

  • Once the coffee-spice rub is mixed, you can transfer it to a jar with a tight-fitting lid and store it in a cool, dark area of the kitchen for up to a year.
  • You can use this coffee rub on everything from steaks, to chicken wings, to pork chops. 
  • Use a bold brew coffee that is medium-grind. Anything finer will turn to paste, anything coarser won't dissolve properly. 
  • Use 1-cup of coffee spice rub per 10 pounds of brisket.

Storage, Freezer, and Reheating Instructions:

  • Transfer leftover brisket to a food storage container, uncut. Keep leftovers for up to 5 days in the refrigerator. 
  • To freeze the brisket after smoking:
    1. Cool it and wrap it in a layer of plastic wrap, followed by a layer of foil.
    2. Freeze it for 2 months. 
    3. Thaw the brisket in the fridge and reheat it per the instructions below. 
  • To reheat the brisket:
    • To reheat brisket in the microwave, cover the slices you wish to reheat and heat on high for 1- 1 1/2 minutes, or until warmed through.
    • Stovetop is best:
      1. Heat a 1/2-inch of water (or beer) in a skillet over medium-high heat.
      2. Add the slices of brisket to the hot liquid.
      3. Cover the skillet and heat the brisket through.
When you're ready to eat it, 
I don't think I geeked out too much, did I? If I did, OH WELL! That's just who I am. Be sure to pick up your brisket soon. Pin this recipe to your smoking board and don't forget to share it with your friends!


Calories: 573kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 76g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 225mg | Sodium: 2326mg | Potassium: 1239mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 61IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 7mg