What is beef brisket?

What cut of beef is brisket?

Beef brisket is an iconic BBQ meat packed with flavour. When people think of brisket, they think of big slices of juicy, tender, smoky beef. It’s also typically thought of as an American staple. However, at The Village Butchers we believe it should be a part of UK BBQs every summer.

Beef Brisket is a primal cut coming from between the shoulders. Brisket is made up of two parts; point and flat. The former is attached to the ribs and contains more fatty areas, while the latter consists of mostly connective and muscle tissue. The flat cut is therefore a leaner, sometimes called ‘first cut’. The point is also known as the ‘deckle’.

Oftentimes, brisket will come already separated into the point and flat so it’s important to check which will fit your preferences. An untrimmed brisket still has the point and flat attached and may not be displayed at a local butcher.

Further down we’ll be covering how to properly cook brisket, what pairs well with it and where you can buy some.

How to Cook Beef Brisket

With meat cooking it’s important to consider what cut you’re dealing with. A general rule of thumb is that hard-working parts of an animal usually produce tougher meat. It’s therefore best to slow cook beef brisket at low temperatures. We recommend braising, barbequing or smoking as the best cooking methods.

Be sure to cover brisket when it’s cooking to distribute heat evenly. This not only seals in the wonderful flavours it also ensures the meat becomes tender. Breaking down connective collagen requires consistent temperatures of at least 70°C over multiple hours.

The amount of time your brisket takes to cook will depend on how big it is. You should allow roughly 1 and a 1/2 hours per pound of meat at 90-100 °C. For instance, a piece of brisket weighing 3lbs would have a cook time of 8 hours.

If you’re looking for a showstopper BBQ centrepiece, check out our slow cooker BBQ brisket recipe.

What to Serve with Beef Brisket?

International Brisket Cooking

Beef brisket gets eaten all over the world and as a result, there are many tried and true dishes. Perhaps the most famous way to prepare brisket is Texas-style smoked brisket. Then there’s Irish corned beef made from the flat of the brisket. As a traditional Jewish holiday dish, brisket is served with latkes, soup, or potato kugel too.

So while cooking beef brisket to your personal preferences is a great way to go, there’s also lots of inspiration out there if you don’t know where to start.

What to Serve with Beef Brisket?

Brisket has big bold flavours, which means accompaniments need to hold their own. Crunchy vegetables add texture while other food groups can be brought in to complement the smokiness of BBQ brisket. Traditional brisket side dishes include:

  • Coleslaw
  • Asparagus
  • Baked beans
  • Corn on the cob
  • Mac and cheese
  • Sweet potato
  • Green beans

BBQ beef brisket is also a fantastic sandwich filling. You can create a BBQ experience for your family and friends by letting them assemble their own brisket sliders. Get creative!

If you’re looking for more inspiration we stock a range of sauces, wines and preserves.

Beef Brisket Storage

Due to its size, brisket leftovers are a high possibility. As such, being able to store it for days after cooking guarantees the most bang for your buck. Although, storing any large cut of meat can be dangerous without following proper procedure.

It goes without saying but first, don’t store raw and cooked meats together. Next, here are some storage tips for both cooked and uncooked brisket.


Beef brisket is a cut that can be enjoyed to the same level days after its initial cooking. To preserve it, wrap the meat well and place in an airtight container. The brisket will then be good for four days refrigerated, or two months frozen. Storing brisket with gravy will last a month longer in the freezer and up to two days less in the fridge.


When you pick up a fresh brisket, it can be stored in a refrigerator for up to eight days. This is provided it’s kept at temperatures lower than 34 F. This goes down to a maximum of five days for fridges between 35-40F.

Brisket that’s frozen immediately can be stored for as long as a year if it’s also wrapped airtight.

Where can I Buy Beef Brisket?


The best way to reheat cooked brisket is to recreate the slow and low cooking method used. Be sure to leave plenty of time for meat to defrost if you’re reheating from frozen. Even from the fridge, the brisket needs some time to come up to room temperature first.

Old, cooked brisket can be reheated by putting it back in the smoker, in the oven, in a sous vide, or by covering with hot barbecue sauce. Whatever method you choose, we recommend avoiding the microwave at all costs.

Most UK supermarkets won’t stock larger cuts of meat like beef brisket. Instead, you’re better off going to online butchers like The Village Butchers. It makes sense though because quality is king when it comes to beef brisket. No fat trimming required.

At The Village Butchers, we offer brisket for families of all sizes. Our briskets range anywhere from 1kg to 6kg. For larger cuts, why not go all in? Have a look at our top-quality grain fed packer brisket.

Searching for ‘buy brisket UK’ but don’t have any local butchers? We deliver across the mainland. Shop today.

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