This slow cooked BBQ Beef Brisket recipe is made in the oven or crock pot for the most tender and juicy meat ever, with a sweet & smoky barbecue sauce! I'm sharing all my best tips for how to cook brisket for a crowd, since this is a great choice for large dinner parties. It's so good, no one will care the meat wasn't smoked for hours!

A large brisket made in the oven and sliced into pieces then topped with bbq sauce.


Table of Contents
  1. Why this Recipe Works
  2. Ingredient Notes
  3. How to Cook Brisket in the Oven
  4. Recipe FAQ's
  5. Recipe Tips
  6. More Dinner Recipes
  7. More Favorites from House of Nash Eats
  8. Oven BBQ Beef Brisket Recipe Recipe

When I was growing up, my family usually had either Chicken Cordon Bleu or this easy, oven roasted BBQ Beef Brisket recipe for dinner on special occasions and holidays like Christmas.

My mom taught me how to cook brisket in the oven using this easy beef brisket recipe that she got at church when we were living in St. Louis back when I was a kid. It's foolproof and always one of my most requested recipes, so I knew it was one I needed to share on this blog.

For some other delicious oven roasted recipes, be sure to try our Rosemary and Garlic Oven Roasted Rack of Lamb, Garlic Herb Butter Beef Tenderloin Roast, Slow Roasted Lamb Shoulder with Pomegranate Apricot Glaze, and Dutch Oven Pot Roast!

Why this Recipe Works

  • It skips a brisket marinade in favor of simply moistening with worcestershire sauce and rubbing it with a simple brisket rub, then letting it sit overnight to draw out moisture before repeating it in the morning and sticking the brisket in the oven.
  • Total prep is all of 10 minutes, then the oven or slow cooker does the rest of the work in this easy-as-it-gets juicy brisket recipe.
  • You don't need a smoker to get great barbecue-tasting results. True, it's not the same as a Texas Smoked Brisket, but it can definitely be appreciated on its own merits, which are many.

Ingredient Notes

  • Brisket: This large cut of meat requires long, slow cooking to break down the fibers for a succulent, melt-in-your-mouth result but it's totally worth it. It's one of my very favorite cuts of beef with incredible flavor.
  • BBQ sauce: You can use any bbq sauce you like, but I'm partially to the hickory & brown sugar kind by Sweet Baby Ray's for this brisket recipe. It sweet and smoky notes are perfect with the savory, tender mouthwatering bites of meat.
  • Brisket rub: I make a super simple brisket rub to season the meat by combining salt, celery salt, onion powder, garlic powder, and sugar. That's it!
Ingredients for making beef brisket in the oven.

How to Cook Brisket in the Oven

Here is the thing about brisket: it needs to be cooked slowly, at a very low temperature over the course of many hours in order to dissolve the tough connective tissues of the meat. Do that and the meat will be so tender that is should practically fall apart when you cut it.

There is no need to be intimidated by the big piece of meat as you really can't go wrong with this type of approach. You don't even need to sear the thing beforehand! The most important thing to know is how much the brisket weighs because that tell you how long to cook it for perfect results.

Start by trimming most of the fat off the brisket, if it didn't already come that way from the store. I like to leave a ¼-inch fat cap on for flavor, and you can certainly leave more if you enjoy it, but any hard, thick areas of fat should be removed with a sharp knife.

Moisten the meat by dousing it with some worcestershire sauce. Then sprinkle it evenly on both sides with a brisket rub made from salt, celery salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and a little sugar.

Making a simple brisket rub with garlic powder, onion powder, celery salt, sugar, and salt.

We always stick the brisket in the fridge overnight at this point to let the salt draw some of the moisture out of the brisket. You can skip this step if you are pressed for time and forgot to do it the night before, but I really do think it's worth the little bit of extra effort. It also means your brisket it trimmed and pretty much ready to go in the oven the next morning.

On the day you plan to serve the brisket, douse it once more with additional worcestershire sauce and finish sprinkling with the remaining rub. Then cover it with foil and stick it in the oven to cook low and slow.

The rule of thumb when cooking brisket is to plan on 1 hour for every pound of brisket, then add an extra 30-60 minutes to finish the sauce. It's better to err on the side of starting your brisket too early since you can always wait to slice it and instead just cover with foil and it will stay hot for a long time than to start late and have hungry family members who can't wait and end up stuffing themselves with rolls.

Once the brisket has been cooking for the right amount of time (say, 5 hours for 5 pounds of brisket), pull it out of the oven and cover it generously with your favorite bbq sauce mixed with brown sugar. Even if I'm using a brown sugar bbq sauce I always add the extra brown sugar because I love the contrast of sweet, salty, and savory in this dish.

Let it cook, uncovered, for another 30-60 minutes until the sauce it hot and bubbly and the brown sugar has had a chance to caramelize.

Remove the brisket to a cutting board and let it rest for 15 minutes before slicing against the grain into finger-width strips. I like to pour the caramelized bbq sauce into a gravy boat or small serving pitcher to drizzle over the sliced brisket and serve the extras on the side for anyone who wants it.

You can present your oven cooked beef brisket on a serving platter, or take a more rustic approach and return the sliced meat to the pan it was cooked in (my personal preference).

Recipe FAQ's

How many hours does it take to cook a brisket?

The general rule is that you need to cook your brisket for 1 hour for every pound of meat, although with this recipe I always give it an extra 30 minutes to an hour after adding the barbecue sauce so that the sauce can heat up and combine with some of the juices coming off the meat.

So if you are cooking a 5-pound brisket (like the one in these photos), you need to plan on 5 hours of cooking time for the brisket plus a little extra time at the end for heating up the sauce. But it works just as well with a 12-pound brisket that would take 12 hours to cook.

How do you use up leftover brisket?

One of my favorite things about BBQ beef brisket are the leftovers! I love to chop up the leftover meat and use it to make some extreme BBQ beef brisket nachos or quesadillas or serve it on a crusty bun with some extra BBQ sauce for a brisket sandwich. That sandwich is even more incredible if you take the extra minute or two to butter the insides of the crusty bun and grill the buttered sides on a hot pan for a bit before adding your meat to it!

What do you serve with beef brisket?

My favorite side with BBQ beef brisket is my copycat Costco mac and cheese, although I also really love serving it with twice baked potatoes or creamy potluck potatoes. But you could serve it with baked beans, coleslaw, cornbread, baked potatoes, cold macaroni salad or any other Southern sides you like! I'm also partial to green beans with it, either the plain steamed variety or these amazing green beans with bacon & pine nuts!

What is brisket?

Brisket comes from the breast area or pectoral muscles of a cow, so it's worked pretty hard and made up of lots of tough connective tissues that can only be dissolved by slow cooking. A full brisket (the ones you see at Costco) are called a "packer cut" and can be 10-14 pounds! You can use this recipe on a full packer brisket as long as you have a large sheet pan and make sure to start it with plenty of time to cook all the way through. But it works just as well on smaller half cuts of brisket (what you see here in these pics). We like it best for the "flat" cut, which is what you often find trimmed for you and neatly packaged in the grocery store.

Tangy bbq sauce poured over tender sliced brisket.

Recipe Tips

  • Storage: Keep leftovers in the fridge for 3-4 days in an airtight container and reheat in a 350°F oven for 10-15 minutes or in the microwave for a couple of minutes before serving.
  • Freezing: You can freezing the leftover meat for 2-3 months. Just thaw and reheat before adding to things like nachos or one of the ideas mentioned above.
  • Cut against the grain: If you look at the meat you will notice that the tissues run in one direction. You want to slice perpendicular to those lines, called cutting against the grain, for the most tender bites of meat.
  • Plan ahead: The best tip you can have for cooking brisket in the oven is to give yourself plenty of time. Don't forget to check your packaging for weight before throwing it out so you know just how long to cook it for!
  • Fat cap on top or on bottom: I always make this brisket recipe with the fat cap on bottom. Some people swear by having the fat cap on top so the fat can melt down into the meat. I like that approach when smoking brisket, but for brisket in the oven I like the fat cap on bottom so the meat on top can dry out a bit more and develop more of a crust. It's really just personal preference though and I don't think there is really a wrong way, despite what others might say.
  • Brisket for a crowd: I love this recipe for big groups because the results are always reliable, it's practically foolproof, and everybody loves it. I have done this for church Christmas dinners where I needed to cook 120 pounds of brisket for 300-350 people and I just farmed out individual briskets and ingredients to a few friends with double ovens, large electric roasters, or slow cookers who could start the meat first thing in the morning so they could roast all day and be tender and ready for slicing that night at the party.

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Oven BBQ Beef Brisket Recipe

4.85 from 186 votes
Amy Nash
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 hours
Total Time 5 hours 10 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings
This slow roasted BBQ Beef Brisket recipe is made in the oven or slow cooker for the most tender and juicy meat ever, with a sweet & smoky barbecue sauce! I'm sharing all my best tips for how to cook brisket for a crowd, since this is a great choice for large dinner parties. It's so good, no one will care the meat wasn't smoked for hours!

Ingredients
  

Brisket

  • 5-6 pounds brisket
  • 3 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 teaspoons table salt
  • 2 teaspoons celery salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar

Sauce

  • 20 ounces hickory-flavored barbecue sauce (Sweet Baby Ray's is my favorite)
  • ¾ cup brown sugar

Instructions
 

  • The night before you plan to cook and serve the brisket, combine the salt, celery salt, garlic powder, onion powder and sugar in a small bowl and set aside. Place the brisket in a large roasting pan and trim the fat if it is thick, but leave at least a ¼" layer. Moisten the brisket with all of the Worcestershire sauce, then sprinkle the top and bottom of the brisket with half of the mixed seasonings, reserving the other half. Cover tightly with foil and place in the refrigerator overnight.
  • The next day, preheat the oven to 250°F. Remove the brisket from the fridge and uncover. Sprinkle it with the remaining seasonings, then cover it with foil again and place it in the oven to roast for 5-6 hours (plan on approximately 1 hour per pound of meat).
  • Remove the brisket from the oven and remove the aluminum foil. Pour off the fat. In a medium bowl, stir together the brown sugar and barbecue sauce, then pour it over the brisket. Increase the oven temperature to 350°F, then return the brisket to the oven, uncovered, and roast an additional 30 minutes to an hour, or until the sauce is hot and the meat is tender. Remove from the oven and let the meat rest for 15 minutes, then slice into finger-width strips against the grain or chop and serve.

Video

Notes

  • Storage: Keep leftovers in the fridge for 3-4 days in an airtight container and reheat in a 350°F oven for 10-15 minutes or in the microwave for a couple of minutes before serving.
  • Freezing: You can freezing the leftover meat for 2-3 months. Just thaw and reheat before adding to things like nachos or one of the ideas mentioned above.
  • Cut against the grain: If you look at the meat you will notice that the tissues run in one direction. You want to slice perpendicular to those lines, called cutting against the grain, for the most tender bites of meat.
  • Plan ahead: The best tip you can have for cooking brisket in the oven is to give yourself plenty of time. Don't forget to check your packaging for weight before throwing it out so you know just how long to cook it for!
  • Fat cap on top or on bottom: I always make this brisket recipe with the fat cap on bottom. Some people swear by having the fat cap on top so the fat can melt down into the meat. I like that approach when smoking brisket, but for brisket in the oven I like the fat cap on bottom so the meat on top can dry out a bit more and develop more of a crust. It's really just personal preference though and I don't think there is really a wrong way, despite what others might say.
  • Brisket for a crowd: I love this recipe for big groups because the results are always reliable, it's practically foolproof, and everybody loves it. I have done this for church Christmas dinners where I needed to cook 120 pounds of brisket for 300-350 people and I just farmed out individual briskets and ingredients to a few friends with double ovens, large electric roasters, or slow cookers who could start the meat first thing in the morning so they could roast all day and be tender and ready for slicing that night at the party.

Nutrition

Calories: 868kcal | Carbohydrates: 69g | Protein: 79g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 234mg | Sodium: 3299mg | Potassium: 1581mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 60g | Vitamin A: 218IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 85mg | Iron: 9mg
Tried this recipe? Show me on Instagram!Mention @HouseOfNashEats or tag #houseofnasheats!

This post was originally published in December, 2016. The photos and content were updated in December, 2021.

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About the author

Hi, I'm Amy

I enjoy exploring the world through food, culture, and travel and sharing the adventure with mostly from-scratch, family friendly recipes that I think of as modern comfort cooking.

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Reader questions and reviews

  1. Nina says:

    Hi, I’m going to be making this tomorrow but just a few questions. Do you add any liquid to the bottom of the pan so that it doesn’t dry out? Also could I add some liquid smoke to it?

    1. Amy says:

      No you don't need to add any liquid to the bottom of the pan. But yes, you could use liquid smoke if you like.

    2. Heidi says:

      I have tried so many recipes with mixed results. My family all wanted brisket for Christmas dinner. I was a bit worried trying yet another brisket recipe from the internet. Wow!!! This one is it people! I followed the recipe exactly with only one change. I didn’t have enough time to marinate it for 24 hours. I only had about 18 hours. It turned out amazing! I cooked an 8 pound brisket and had nothing left. My kids asked if I would cook one today so they had some to eat for lunch today 😊 I will definitely be making this again soo!

      1. Amy says:

        Wow! Thank you for the nice comment! I'm glad your family enjoyed it so much!

  2. Matt says:

    Good tips, used a hybrid of BBQing first, then finished in the oven. Tender and delicious!

  3. Bonnie Grons says:

    5 stars
    Made this recipe for my JOY Bible study class luncheon and everyone love it..Will be making this again!

  4. M condon says:

    Awesome brisket for not being smoked

  5. Leon Cavitt, Jr. says:

    I'm using this oven barbecue brisket for the first. Cooking it for Mother's Day dinner. I hope it comes out ok, because for the first hour and a half I was cooking it on 325 degrees, before I realized it should have been 225 degrees. I quickly made the adjustments. We'll see how it comes out!
    Thanks for the recipe.

  6. Roberta Valella says:

    We made this recipe today due to cold, and severely windy conditions in our area. It came out juicy and perfect! We had already gotten our rub on the meat when our weather took a turn. Thanks for the recipe!

  7. Jenny says:

    I’ve made this twice and everyone loved it and wanted the recipe. Someone who has brisket for all their big family meals said it was the best brisket they’ve ever had!! Made it as the recipe said and put it in the fridge with the seasoning overnight.

  8. Mohamed Mohamed says:

    5 stars
    Very good and simple

  9. Tootsie says:

    What should the internal temperature be when finished?

    1. Amy says:

      Hi! I would keep it between 180-185 degrees Fahrenheit.

  10. Doug says:

    Did you mention somewhere what temperature should be set at?

    1. Amy says:

      Yes, it's in steps 2 and 3. You roast it really low and slow at 250 degrees F for a long time and then finish it off at 350 degrees F for the last hour.

  11. Agnes Guglielmi says:

    Can’t wait to try this
    Can the meat be seared first for more flavour/crust ?
    Also I have a small family.
    What changes if any do you recommend for a smaller roast such as 2-3 pounds?
    For a change can other flavoured BBQ sauces be used?
    Thank you

    1. Amy says:

      To be honest, I don't even bother searing. Ha ha. The flavor is still great and the meat cooks great without searing it. But go for it if you want to! You can buy whatever size of brisket you would like for your family. The rule of thumb when cooking brisket is to plan on 1 hour for every pound of brisket, then add an extra 30-60 minutes to finish the sauce. And yes! Use any sauce you like! It's fun to mix it up! I hope you enjoy!

  12. Richie says:

    How many tables spoons of ingredients?
    Is it by per lbs?

    1. Amy says:

      Hi Richie! I'm not sure I understand your first question - the measurements are listed in the recipe card. The amounts given are for about 5-6 pounds of brisket. If your brisket is larger you might want to 1.5x or double the amount of the other ingredients.

  13. Lavada Murphy says:

    Thank you for this recipe, I can't wait to try it. Looks and sounds delicious.

  14. Jeff Stricklin says:

    4 stars
    You mentioned a Slow Cooker as well, is the time the same for the slow cooker, and if using a slow cooker do you still wrap in the foil?

    1. Amy says:

      No, you can skip the foil if using a slow cooker.

      1. Genna says:

        But can you keep the foil??

  15. Liz Eisele says:

    Do u wrap the meat in foil itself out just cover the pan tightly with foil? Making it for Christmas tomorrow want it to be great!

    1. Amy says:

      Either way works! I usually just cover the pan with foil.

  16. Susan Renken says:

    5 stars
    Made this today the recipe was awesome will definitely be making again 😋 so tender and juicy.

    1. Amy says:

      Isn't it so good! I have such fond recipes eating this growing up. Glad you enjoyed it!

  17. Denise Angel says:

    What oven temperature should we use to cook low and slow?

  18. Suzanne says:

    This recipe sounds amazing. I have a whole brisket. Can I do a whole brisket the same way. It is about 8 kg I bought from Costco

    1. Amy says:

      Yes, just make sure to give it plenty of time to cook. And if it's one of the big Costco briskets you will probably need to trim away quite a bit of the hard fat if there is a lot of it.

  19. Kaylee says:

    Do I place it in the roasting pan fat side down?

    1. Amy says:

      Yes place the fat side down so it is between the heat source and the meat. It should come out great that way!

      1. Clare says:

        I'm going to make this in 2 days. Mine is 9.25lbs. Can I cut it in half first? I think I would then cook it for 5 hours - I just want it to be done. I'm excited to try this!

        1. Amy says:

          Yes, if you cut it in half and give them some space, it should cook in less time.

  20. Faith says:

    Looking forward to making this. Do I put it directly on the bottom of the roasting pan or do I use the roasting pan rack and put the brisket on the rack?

    1. Amy says:

      I always put it directly on the bottom of the roasting pan.

  21. RGB says:

    What is recipe if you are doing 2-3pds of brisket?

    1. Amy says:

      I would just split the recipe in half since you are using half the meat.

  22. Vicky says:

    5 stars
    Hi. Have you ever pre-seasoned earlier than the night before cooking? Is that a bad idea? I want to cook this starting around 1pm Saturday. How early could I start the seasoning on Friday?

    1. Amy says:

      Brisket is a thick and forgiving piece of meat so you would be fine to season it a full 24-48 hours in advance.

  23. Patty says:

    5 stars
    This brisket is delicious, easy to make and everyone loved it! Thank you for a new favorite recipe, Amy!

  24. Shaun says:

    3 stars
    Everyone hates it when there's instructions near top of the page to the middle which is lacking in necessary details (Measurements and temps) and then way at the bottom for some reason, that info is hiding down there. I'm trying it now. I think it will be good. I just hate the website layout.

    1. Amy says:

      Right at the top of every post is a button that says "jump to recipe". If you prefer to skip the tips and step-by-step photos and other info, you can just click on that and it will take you straight to the recipe card.

  25. Carol Haddon says:

    5 stars
    This recipe is simple and amazing. When entertaining you aren't stuck in the kitchen ..all the prep work is done in advance. Follow her directions and you will get rave reviews from your guests!

    1. Amy says:

      Wow! Thank you so much! That is so kind of you to say! This recipe is a good one, I'm so glad you like it!

  26. dave says:

    Is the nutrition correct? It seems very high.

  27. Heidi says:

    5 stars
    I forgot to ask in my last review, can I use this same method with the point? I have a smaller point in my freezer that I would like to use up.

    1. Amy says:

      Yes you should be able to use the same method with the point cut of brisket.

  28. Q Mikey mike says:

    5 stars
    This was moist and flavorful. Cooking times varies the tenderness. Thankful this recipe was available.

  29. Todd says:

    Low temp . What is considered low temp. You don’t have a temperature listed.

    1. Amy says:

      It's 250°F and it's in step 2 of the instructions.

  30. Mohamed Hobeldin says:

    5 stars
    What is the oven temperature set at for this slow roasting?

    1. Amy says:

      It's 250°F.

  31. Michele says:

    I followed the recipe and cooked 16 lbs of brisket. I cut it into 3 pieces. I left 1/2 of the fat on, and I turned the oven to 450° for the 1st 20-minutes to seal meat. I then cooked it at 250° and it was done in about 7 hours. It was juicy and tender! Wonderful!

    1. Amy says:

      Wow! Impressive! That's a good amount of brisket. This is a classic go-to recipe for our family. It's a good one!

  32. Jack says:

    I never saw a temperature to cook it at, just low and slow.
    Only 350 to reheat.

    1. Amy says:

      At the top of the page there is a "jump to recipe" button that will bring you straight to the recipe card with instructions and measurements. I like to bake the brisket at 250 degrees F and then increase the oven temperature to 350°F and roast it uncovered an additional 30 minutes to an hour, or until the sauce is hot and the meat is tender.

  33. Joyce Graham says:

    5 stars
    Best brisket I’ve ever made. So tender and the flavor was outstanding! I’ll be making this again, very soon! Thank you!

  34. Rikk says:

    What temp do you set the oven at ?

    1. Amy says:

      Preheat to 250 F. Then the last half hour to 350F. If you hit the "jump to recipe" button at the top of the page, it will take you straight to the recipe card with the list of ingredients and all the steps to make the brisket.

  35. Bonnie LeVar says:

    I got to the market too late to buy a large (5 -6 lb.) brisket and I am having 10 people over for dinner. So, I bought three 2 plus briskets instead of one.
    Can I cook them in the oven at the same time in one large roasting pan and how much time will it take? I'm assuming that 5-6 hours would be too much but I don't know how to adjust the time for these 3 pieces. Thank you for your advice.

    1. Amy says:

      Yes you can cook them in the same roasting pan at the same time. If there is space between them then calculate your time for cooking them based on the weight of the largest brisket, not the weight of both briskets. You should be just fine!

  36. Ann says:

    Hi Amy, I've heard some comments that suggest cooking by convection temperatures to circulate the heat more evenly. Any thoughts on that? Also, when you refrigerate are you wrapping the foil around the brisket or over the pan it sits in. Appreciate your reply.

    Ann

    1. Amy says:

      If you have convention, you can definitely use that. Convention is great if you're cooking/baking items on multiple racks in the oven because the heat gets distributed better. It can also help meat get a crispy outer layer while keeping the meat juicy inside. But it is sometimes trickier to use for baking because you need to get the temperature and timing right and a lot of recipes don't have convection settings. It's completely your preference! Some people love it, some people don't like it.
      For the foil, just wrap it over the pan.
      Hope that helps!

  37. Mama Nelly says:

    I've always been afraid of brisket, it turned out heavenly! I used Apple Butter BBQ sauce w/ the brown sugar, and received many kudos from hubby!

  38. Bee Wood says:

    5 stars
    The recipe was easy and delicious!

  39. Stephen says:

    I am curious...you give cooking times for an oven. Is the cooking time the same if using a slow cooker?

    1. Amy says:

      I would do 8-10 hours in the slow cooker on low.

  40. DM says:

    Hi Amy, we don't have celery salt / my husband doesn't like celery.

    Would you recommend leaving out the 1tsp Celery Salt altogether or substituting with something else like more table salt or garlic salt?

    Thank you !

    1. Amy says:

      Onion salt would probably be the best substitute, but you can just sub 1 teaspoon of table salt for the celery salt since celery salt is just celery seeds and table salt in a 2:1 ratio.