How to Make Burnt Ends

How-to Article

How to Make Burnt Ends

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Things To Grab

  • Smoker
  • Oak wood chips
  • Water pan
  • Meat thermometer
  • Uncoated butcher paper
  • 9x13-inch pan
  • Aluminum foil

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    Break out your smoker! These slow-smoked burnt ends are tender and full of caramelized flavor. They're totally worth all the time and love you'll put into them.

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    1. Select the Right Cut: A whole brisket consists of two parts separated by a layer of fat—a knobby angular point with more fat and a long, thin rectangular portion that's quite lean. Ask a Hy-Vee meat expert to split the brisket for you. Use the point to make burnt ends. Smoke the flat alongside the point and slice it for sandwiches.

    2. Trim Fat and Apply a Dry Rub: With a sharp knife, trim all hard fat from the bottom of the brisket point; trim top cap of fat to 1/4-inch-thick. After trimming the fat, season all sides of the brisket point with dry rub. Let the point stand while heating the smoker or grill.

    3. Smoke the Point: Smoke the point, fat side down, at 225 degrees for 4 to 6 hours or until internal temperature reaches 165 to 170 degrees, adding wood chips as needed. Remove the point; wrap in uncoated butcher paper. Continue smoking the point without wood chips for 7 to 8 hours or until internal temperature reaches 195 to 203 degrees.

    4. Unwrap and Cut: Unwrap the brisket point and transfer any juices to a 13x9-inch foil pan. Use a sharp knife to cut brisket point into 1-1/2-inch cubes. Place cubes in pan.

    5. Smoke Until Caramelized: Sprinkle brown sugar on brisket cubes and drizzle with barbecue sauce. Lightly brush the cubes to evenly distribute sugar and sauce. Place foil pan, uncovered, in smoker. Increase temperature to 275 degrees and smoke for 1 to 2 hours or until glaze is sticky and caramelized.

    6. Serve: A perfect burnt end is soft with a savory, sticky-sweet taste—all the expected flavors of smoked brisket. Pop a cube in your mouth for a flavor explosion. Or toss a few into baked beans or mac and cheese for a smoky sensation.