Can I Smoke Half A Brisket? What You Need to Know

When making brisket for the first time, you will usually feel quite overwhelmed by the multiple steps and restrictions. Many people are not always aware of the limitations of the food and may wonder if they can smoke half a brisket. 

You can smoke half a brisket if you are cutting a whole brisket in half, with the brisket smoking much faster and getting much hotter much easier. If the brisket already has a flat side or a point. These are signs that the brisket has already been divided into pieces. 

can I smoke half a brisket

There are several other things to know about smoking a brisket and dividing it into pieces than simply getting a knife and cutting it. 

We have discussed some of the most commonly asked questions and included the steps to smoking half a brisket without losing any quality or taste.

When Can You Cut A Brisket In Half To Smoke?

If you have a full brisket that is closed off entirely, you can cut it before it is smoked or cooked. These will often be the large briskets that weigh several pounds and can be pretty large, which is easily more than enough food for two or three families to share with some leftover. 

If brisket is cut open on one side, it can be easy to close it or simply leave it open while it is being cooked in whichever way you are choosing to cook it. However, if the brisket is to be cut up before you start smoking, you will not get the same texture from the meat instead of ending up with something dry.

Brisket is known to smoke and cook well precisely because it is completely sealed when prepared properly, making it juicy.

When cutting it into too many pieces, it releases the internal juices, and the brisket naturally becomes much drier as it is being smoked or cooked. 

How Do You Smoke A Half Brisket?

You will need to do two critical things after cutting your brisket in half before you are planning on smoking it. First, you can do everything as usual. We recommend taking care not to add the brisket to your pellet grill smoker or your weber to prevent it from being flavorless. 

Also, cover the cut surface of the brisket with both spices and sauces; we will discuss exactly how to do this and why it is essential to do this. 

Many people mistake simply leaving the cut pieces as is, causing a lack of taste and texture when cutting the brisket. 

Sealing With Sauces

The first thing that will have to be done to the brisket once you have cut it in half is to reapply some sauces to the surface of the brisket. The part where you have cut it will be completely exposed. So having it covered with a thicker layer of sauce will help prevent the internal juices from easily escaping.

We recommend not adding the sauces to the brisket until you have cut it, especially if you marinate it overnight. Having a part of the brisket cut open will help the brisket absorb the flavors from the sauces and marinades you are using. 

Covering With Spices

Once the brisket has been properly sauced up, you will need to add some dry rub and spices to it to ensure that it is entirely covered. We recommend building a thicker layer around and on the cut portion of the brisket. It will prevent the cut parts from being dry and tasteless. 

We always recommend that you ensure that the parts of your brisket that have been cut are kept to only one part specifically to prevent it from drying out. When covering this part with spices and sauces, you can easily get a brisket that may even taste better than a whole brisket would have. 

Why Do People Smoke Only Half A Brisket?

Many people smoke only half a brisket at a time because smoking a whole brisket can create too much meat to eat. In addition, the leftover meat from an entire brisket is much more meat required for a party or gathering. 

Saving brisket that has not yet been smoked or cooked is much easier than preventing already cooked brisket from spoiling. Raw frozen brisket can easily last several months rather than only the week, and you can keep cooked brisket.

Further, if you are still learning how to smoke a brisket. It will help to have two separate parts to experiment and learn. Many people prefer to have one brisket that they will serve on the night and another brisket that they make specifically to learn the techniques and spices needed. 

Are There Any Challenges To Smoking Half A Brisket?

The biggest challenge in smoking half a brisket is knowing exactly how long to wait and how much spices to use.

Unfortunately, most recipes will assume that you are using a whole brisket that has not been cut or touched by a knife until you follow the steps given in the recipe. 

When smoking half a brisket, you will need to ensure that you are not setting the heat too high or that you are drying out the brisket through the smoke. This can quickly happen as there is now a flat side to the brisket; however, it should be fine once you have compensated for this. 

We always recommend only creating and using half the required number of sauces and spices that a brisket recipe may call for when making half a brisket. This will ensure that you have as little waste as possible and that the brisket will not be dried out once cooked. 

Final Word

You can easily smoke half a brisket; be sure that your temperatures are correct and that you have applied enough sauces and spices. Many brisket makers will regularly make half briskets. Specifically to try new recipes or combinations before going to a party or gathering. 

Always remember that half a brisket does not directly equate to half to work! 

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