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Brisket 225 Or 275 – Which One Is The Perfect Temperature?

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You are attempting to cook your first ever brisket. But you feel confused about what is the right temperature to use. Because you’re afraid of overcooking.

What is the right temperature for brisket 225 or 275?

225 gives you a more juicy and tender piece of meat than 275. But it takes up to 11-12 hours of cooking time. On the other hand, 275 is way faster. It takes about 4-6 hours. But you have the chance of overcooking if you’re not careful. More experienced cooks tend to use 275 for faster results.

That is the gist. But surely you want to know more. That’s why we prepared this article for you.

Let’s dive right in!

Brief Comparison – brisket 225 or 275

Brisket is certainly not a food that can be made in a hurry. And it is a pretty complex weekend dinner plan as well.

Cooking a good brisket needs the right choice of meat, a proper smoker. And lots of experience in cooking and smoking meats.

Brisket is cooked for a long time over a specific temperature. And everyone who cooks it has their own perfect temperature that gives them the best brisket.

But most people are seen to be torn between 225 and 275. Is there any difference in the result? 

In this article, we will explore what will be the change in brisket due to the difference in temperature. And give you the answer to the temperature behind the perfect brisket.

Let’s see a quick comparison between the two temperatures, describing the basic differences between them:

Cooking TimeTakes longer,11-12 hoursTakes much shorter times, 5-6 hours
Choice of MeatFatty cuts of meat taste betterLow-fat cuts taste better
TextureJuicy and softLess juicy but better bark

From the table, we can get a quick look at the differences between the two cooking methods. But surely there is more to this.

Smoking briskets is a learning process. A lot of factors contribute to making the perfect brisket. 

Let’s get down to a detailed discussion on how these two cooking methods vary.

Detailed Comparison – brisket 225 or 275

For most beginners, it usually starts cooking at 225 degrees. That’s because it is much safer and has more room for errors.

Cooking at a lower temperature ensures that you won’t overcook and burn your meat. Because dealing with high temperatures could make you burn the bottom of your dish.

As people start getting more experienced, they tend to start using 275. Since it offers nearly the same result within a much shorter time.

There are also taste factors, that the better bark achieved by cooking at 275 is liked by many. That makes 275 a very popular choice as well.

Still, there are a few factors that can determine which method to use. And each has slight advantages and disadvantages over each other. 

Let’s check them out and see how different are they:

1. Cooking Time

It is evident that brisket smoking isn’t a very fast task. It takes determination and lots of free time to do one.

New smokers tend to cook at 225. And that takes up a lot of time.

Generally, the rule of thumb is that it takes 1-1.5 hours per pound of meat. And the general brisket cuts are 10-12 pounds. That takes the total cooking time up to 11-12 hours at a time.

Cooking at this slow and low temperature lets the temperature spread evenly and slowly. Turning the meat juicier and softer.

Cooking at 275 takes nearly 4-6 hours to get properly done. But you have to be careful not to burn it.

A higher temperature can quickly stiffen up your meat and make it chewy.

To keep track of time, here are some of our favorite kitchen timers to help you out:


Hope this will help you choose a kitchen timer, for when you start cooking your first brisket!

Now, the decision comes down to if you want to save some time or not.

2. Choice of Meat

Brisket is made from one of the strongest muscle regions of the animal. It is the pectoral region that carries most of the weight of the animal.

A longer cooking time will help the meat to cook thoroughly and it will be juicy and tender.

The fat percentage is what has the most effect on whether you should go for 225 or 275.

Fatty meats tend to taste better with a longer cooking time. If the meat is marbled nicely and also has a good amount of fat, 225 is a better choice. 

But in case you want to cook at 275 and save yourself time, you should trim off some of the fat beforehand. 

A low-fat cut of meat gives a better taste and bark on the meat when cooked at 275. 

It really depends on your choice and taste on how you want to cook and select the meat according to that.

3. Texture Of The Meat

As mentioned earlier, it is quite obvious that cooking at two different temperatures will give you a different texture. 

Cooking at 225 and 275 has different effects on the texture of the meat. 

Low heat and long cooking will help the heat spread thoroughly. That makes the meat soft and juicy. But the inside of the brisket shouldn’t be pink.

It slowly breaks down the fibers and joints in the meat and the end result is much tender meat.

At high temperatures, the seasonings release their flavor more. It is slightly stiffer than 225 one but enjoyable, to say the least.

From the discussion, it is clear that there are visible differences between the 225 cooking and 227. 

The differences can be better described as preferences as they yield different types of results. And you can follow the one that suits you the best.

But as a beginner what do we recommend? Let’s find out.

Our Recommendation 

As we said earlier, beginners choose to cook at 225 more often. Because that is much easier to do and has a lot less room for error. 

Cooking at 275 yields a faster result but if you mess up the timing you can easily overcook or burn your brisket.

Also if you have any sugar in your seasoning, you better not use 275 while cooking. As sugar burns really fast.

But experienced smokers tend to always cook at 275. Because it gets you nearly the same result as the 225 cooking, but at a much faster time. 

Once you understand how smoking your meat works, you’ll probably start to cook at 275. As it is much more convenient and faster.

Now, our recommendation would be that if you are a beginner, you should do it once or twice at 225. That way you will get the hang of it and how all of it works.

Once you know the process, then you can start doing 275. Just lookout for the perfect color of the brisket.

You just have to be careful about the time. As you keep doing it, you’ll develop your own sense of timing and it’ll be smooth sailing from there.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should you wrap your brisket in foil?

Yes you can do it. Wrapping your brisket in foil speeds up the cooking process.

How long should you rest the brisket?

After cooking, you should take the pan out and let it rest for 30 minutes to an hour. This resting cooks the meat a bit and lets the juices kept inside.

How long before should you dry rub your brisket?

The dry rub should be applied at least 2-3 hours prior to cooking to get the flavors in. But the ideal timing is letting the brisket sit overnight with the dry rub applied. 


There you have it! Hopefully, this clears up your confusion and answers whether you should cook your brisket 225 or 275 degrees. 

Try for yourself, that way you’ll get the hunch for what is perfect for your taste.

Until then, happy cooking!