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Brisket is a large cut of beef that is one of the most respected proteins in the world of barbecue, especially in Texas.
Because brisket is large and a tough cut of meat, it can be challenging to cook. If you follow my award-winning brisket tips, you’ll become a brisket pro.
What part of a cow is brisket from?
The brisket is part of the chest or pectoral muscle of the cow. It’s located just above its front legs. Unlike other primal beef cuts, the cow uses this muscle a lot, which is why it requires a certain cooking technique to break down the connective tissue.
It’s one tough piece of meat, but when you smoke it just right, it becomes a heavenly slab of beef that yields tender meat slices and melt-in-your-mouth burnt ends.
What is a Packer Brisket?
Technically, the full brisket primal cut includes two muscles: the point cut and the flat cut.
The point is the thickest part and its the fattier, more flavorful end of the brisket. It’s where burnt ends come from.
Comparatively, the flat is the less fatty portion of the brisket that lays on top of the point. It’s where your traditional brisket slices come from.
When shopping for beef brisket at the grocery store or butcher, you may notice a a variety of sizes to choose from.
A whole packer brisket is the full primal with both the flat and point still connected. These can weigh anywhere from about 10 pounds to 24 pounds.
It’s also common to see just the flat sold by itself. These will weigh anywhere from about 4 to 15 pounds.
It’s much less common to find just the brisket point sold by itself. When I do see these, I grab a few, because they’re the best part of the brisket.