Smoked beef brisket is one of the most popular barbecue dishes in America. The juicy, beefy, smoky meat is great all on its own or piled high on a sandwich.

Smoking a brisket can be intimidating, but with the Ninja Woodfire Grill, it’s literally as easy as seasoning the meat and pushing a button.

Follow my below tips and recipe below to smoke a perfect brisket.

platter of smoked brisket cooked on the Ninja Woodfire Grill.

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What is brisket

Brisket is a cut of beef made up of two muscles (the point and the flat) that comes from the chest of a cow. It’s a rather tough piece of meat, because the cow uses these muscle frequently.

Smoking brisket for several hours helps break down the tough muscle fibers, which turns this beef cut into one of the most desirable on the cow.

BBQ Tips: Brisket Click for the ultimate brisket guide.

The flat meat is more lean; whereas the point meat is much more fatty and tender. It’s more common to find brisket flats than brisket points, but if you can find a point, give it a try, you’ll love the results.

I have been smoking brisket for years and have a comprehensive article on the no-fail way to smoke brisket on a pellet or charcoal grill. It breaks down everything from picking out a brisket to trimming it to the importance of the rest stage.

Ingredients

smoked brisket ingredients: brisket, brisket rub.
  • Brisket: The Woodfire Grill Grate is about 15 inches long, so be sure that you choose a brisket that will fit. Usually, one that is under 10 pounds will work. You can buy the flat, point or a combination of both.
  • Brisket Rub: Use your favorite beef or brisket rub.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar: For added moisture, spritz the brisket every 1-2 hours with this flavor enhancer.
Substitutions: You can also season your brisket with a combination of salt, pepper and granulated garlic or any other barbecue seasoning that you love. 

How to make smoked brisket on the Ninja Woodfire Grill

  1. STEP ONE: Start by trimming down the thick layer of fat on the bottom or sides. I recommend trimming them until they are about 1/4-inch thick. Read my full brisket trimming tutorial for details. Then, season the brisket liberally with Brisket Rub.
raw brisket seasoned.
  1. STEP TWO: Fill the smoke box with pellets. Place the brisket on the Ninja Woodfire Grill and set the grill to smoker at 225F degrees and the time to 8 hours. The pellets will ignite as the grill heats.
seasoned brisket point on Ninja Woodfire Grill.
  1. STEP THREE: Depending on how much smoke flavor you prefer, you can add more pellets to the smoke box once you see the smoke start fade. As the brisket smokes, a flavorful bark will begin to form.
smoked brisket on Ninja Grill after 2.5 hours.
  1. STEP FOUR: While the convection fan in the Ninja Woodfire Grill helps keep the brisket moist, you can also spritz it with a little water or apple cider vinegar every 1-2 hours for an added boost of moisture and flavor.
spritzing brisket with apple cider vinegar.
NINJA PRO TIP: When smoking brisket on the Ninja Woodfire Grill, there is no need to wrap it in foil or butcher paper. In fact, doing so can effect the way the grill works. Instead, just allow the grill's convection system to do its magic. 
  1. STEP FIVE: Cook the brisket until it is probe tender, usually this will be at an internal temperature from 200-210F degrees. When barbecuing at different altitudes, the final temp will vary. If you have the Ninja Woodfire Pro Outdoor Grill, you can use the built-in thermometer to monitor the cook temp for you.
brisket on Ninja Grill registering at 203 degrees.
  1. STEP SIX: Once the brisket is done smoking, wrap it in plastic wrap, foil or butcher paper and allow it to rest in a cooler without ice for at least an hour. This will allow the juices to settle and redistribute back into the meat.
brisket with dark bark.

How to serve smoked brisket

After you’ve allowed the beef brisket to rest, you can slice it and serve it on a platter with smoked mac and cheese and some pickles. Or pile it on white bread or buns to make brisket sandwiches.

side view of sliced brisket.
NINJA PRO TIP: It's important to slice the meat against the grain. The grain refers to the direction in which the fibers are running. If you run the knife in the same direction as the grain, the bite will be chewy. If you slice against the grain, so that you can see all the lines (pictured below), the bite will be more tender.
sliced smoked brisket cooked on the Ninja Woodfire Grill.

The outer crust of a brisket that looks blackened is called the bark. This is perfectly normal and very flavorful. It’s the candied combination of seasoning and smoke that adds that special touch to smoked brisket.

sliced brisket on peach paper.

Storage

If you end up with leftover brisket, you can store it in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Or you can store it in the freezer for up to six months.

You can reheat slices in the microwave on a reduced-heat setting.

Or, you can warm the slices on the Ninja Griddle Plate. It’s also fantastic on loaded baked potatoes or in savory hand pies.

If this information was helpful, I would appreciate it if you would use the link below when you purchase your Ninja Woodfire Grill. After you make a purchase, I will be provided a slight commission at no extra cost to you.

READ MY FULL REVIEW

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I wrap my brisket?

When cooking on the Ninja Woodfire Grill, I don’t recommend wrapping the brisket. Doing so can interfere with the grill’s convection technology. Allow the magic Ninja is known for to do its thing.

How many hours does it take to smoke a brisket on a Ninja Woodfire Grill?

The time it takes to smoke a brisket on a Ninja Grill depends on the size of brisket that you have and the temperature you’re cooking at. Plan on around 30 minutes per pound. A 10-pound brisket cooked at 225F degrees should take around 5 1/2 hours to cook and another 1-2 hours to rest.

Should the brisket be placed fat cap up or fat cap down?

When smoking a brisket, it’s best to face the fat cap toward the heat source. With the Ninja Woodfire Outdoor Grill, the heat is generated from the top of the grill, so placing the fat cap toward the top would be recommended. However, I like the look of pretty bark, so I’ve also smoked the brisket with the fat cap down and had wonderful results.

When smoking a brisket, do you flip it?

I don’t usually flip a brisket when cooking at low temperatures. If you cook a brisket using the hot and fast method, that’s when flipping is recommended. However, because the Ninja Woodfire Grill’s heat source is at the top, you could start the cook with the fat cap up and then flip it after a couple of hours to help form a better bark on top.

At what temperature is brisket done?

Brisket flat is usually done around an internal temperature of 200-205F degrees. Since brisket point has more fat, it can stand to be cooked a little longer – to an internal temperature of 210F degrees. This can all vary however, depending on your altitude. The higher the altitude, the lower the final temp. The best way to know if a brisket is done is to pierce it with a probe. If it goes in smoothly with little resistance, it’s ready.

Why isn’t there a smoke ring?

The Ninja Woodfire Outdoor Grill uses electric as its heat source, not the pellets. While the pellets will provide real woodfire flavor, you won’t see a heavy smoke ring. It has to do with the science of how smoke rings are created. If you want to add more smoke flavor, you can refill the smoke box throughout the cook.

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4.92 from 56 votes

Smoked Brisket on a Ninja Woodfire Grill

You can now make smoked brisket with Ninja using the Ninja Woodfire Grill. Full recipe and pitmaster tips.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 5 hours 30 minutes
Total Time: 7 hours
Servings: 10

Ingredients 

  • 10 lb beef brisket
  • 1/4 cup Christie Vanover's Brisket Rub
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

Instructions 

  • Trim: Trim the bottom of the brisket so that the fat layer is no more than 1/4-inch thick. View my comprehensive tutorial (link above) for more details.
  • Season: Sprinkle a liberal amount of brisket seasoning all over the top, bottom and sides of the brisket.
  • Grill Setup: Fill the smoke box with a scoop of pellets. Set the Ninja Woodfire Grill to Smoker with a temperature of 225F degrees and a time of 8 hours.
  • Smoke: Smoke the brisket for about 5 1/2 hours, spritzing every 1-2 hours with apple cider vinegar, until it is probe tender and registers at an internal temperature of 200-210F degrees.
  • Rest: Once the brisket has finished cooking, wrap it in plastic wrap or foil and let it rest in a cooler without ice for at least 1 hour.
  • Slice: Remove the brisket from the wrapping and slice it against the grain.

Video

Notes

For added flavor, season the brisket the night before and let it rest covered in the refrigerator overnight. 
I always set the Ninja to more time than is needed so the clock doesn’t run out in the middle of the cook. If the food is done cooking before the timer runs out, just push stop to turn the grill off. 

Nutrition

Calories: 710kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 94gFat: 34gSaturated Fat: 12gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 281mgSodium: 359mgPotassium: 1513mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 0.1gVitamin A: 46IUVitamin C: 0.2mgCalcium: 41mgIron: 9mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Did you try this recipe?Be sure to rate it, leave a comment and save it so you can make it again. Show off your awesome results on social by tagging @girlscangrill

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christie vanover standing against wood wall.

Hey BBQ Family

I’m Christie, the head cook and award-winning competitive pitmaster for Team Girls Can Grill. I have won multiple grand championships and top 10 category finishes. I’m an expert grill reviewer for BBQ Guys, and I have appeared on the Food Network and Ninja Woodfire Grill infomercials. I established this website in 2015 to share my BBQ tips and recipes.

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25 Comments

    1. With the Ninja, the pellets are not the heat source; therefore they don’t produce very high levels of nitric oxide. It’s the nitric oxide interaction with the meat’s myoglobin that causes a smoke ring to form.

  1. I’m currently smoking a 7.5lb brisket now. Do I need to flip it over 1/2 way through the process or keep in the same spot the entire time?

      1. When you add pellets and turn the function to smoke, it will take a few minutes for the pellets to ignite and start to smoke. If it doesn’t smoke after a few minutes, press the woodfire button. If it still doesn’t smoke, check the pellet box. Add new pellets and try again. If it’s still not working, you’ll need to contact Ninja.

  2. I turned my ninja outdoor grill to the smoke setting and added pellets but the smoker never seemed to smoke and the pellets never caught fire. I pressed the smoke button several times and tried to restart it too but didn’t seem to ever smoke. Was I jumping the gun? Do they gradually burn? Unlike on the grill setting? Thank you!

    1. It sounds like there might be an issue with your grill. I recommend reaching out to Ninja. The grill should show IGN, meaning it’s igniting, and they should start to smoke in about 5 minutes.

  3. Smokin my first 5-26 pound Flat Brisket as to your recommended temp, 225, used a MEATER probe for temp control looking and smoking good- I added additional pellets throughout the smoke- looks great sitting at a 178 temp with estimate 2 hours to go— can’t wait. Thank you for Wonderful directions

  4. I’m surprised no one has asked this yet, so I must be missing something. Why am I setting the grill for EIGHT hours if the cooking time is FIVE and a half hours?

    1. I always set it for more time than I need because I don’t want it to turn off before I’m done cooking it. When your food is done, you can just turn the grill off.

      1. Well that should have been mentioned at the beginning when setting the timer. Was worried about it finishing it and started cooking again. Not sure if the internal temp ever reached 200-210.

  5. Should I replace pellets in smoke box once an hour and do I need to shut off the smoker to do so? Also would cherry and oak be a good combo for pellets for smoking a brisket?

    1. If you want more smoke, you can add another scoop of pellets every hour or so. There’s no need to shut the smoker off. If for some reason the new batch of pellets doesn’t ignite, press the woodfire technology button. Oak and cherry are great choices for brisket. I use those two all the time.

  6. Amazing recipe! My only question is I’m using a UK ninja wood fire. The lowest my temp goes down to is 120c. You used 225F which is 107c will my lowest setting work as well?

    1. Yes. You’ll probably be able to shave 30-60 minutes off of your cook times with that higher temp, but it will still taste great.

  7. Hi, thanks for the amazing Ninja Woodfire recipes. I am planning on cooking a brisket on it tomorrow, have read a lot about injecting liquid into the brisket before cooking, will this help or hinder your method? Many thanks AndyG

    1. You’re very welcome. Injecting brisket is a great way to make it more moist and add more flavor. I recommend using beef broth.

  8. I followed all the instructions word for word and unfortunately the brisket was very dry and tough…so disappointed.

    1. I’m sorry to hear that. I’d love to help you troubleshoot what went wrong. What grade of brisket did you smoke? Select and choice-grade briskets have less fat and can be a little trickier. What was the final internal temperature of your brisket? Was it ever probe tender? It’s possible you cooked it too long or not long enough. Most importantly, did you wrap it and let it rest? That is the final key to locking in moisture.

  9. outstanding recipe ….. easy to follow…. tasty results with a 7.9 lb brisket ….. IT WAS TERRIFIC TASTING everyone loved it and we gotta cook another one tomorrow ….. thank Jerry & Barb R

    1. You don’t need to wrap the brisket on the Ninja. The convection technology helps pull it through the stall.