RECIPE: Hickory Smoked Brisket

Dickey's Barbecue Restaurant Opens in Jacksonville

Hickory Smoked Brisket

From Mr. Dickey's Barbecue Cookbook by Roland Dickey, © Dickey's Barbecue Restaurant, Inc., used by permission of the publisher, Pelican Publishing Company, Inc.

Serves 8 to 10

Smoking Temperature: 225 to 250 degrees F

Smoking Time: 45 to 60 minutes per poun

Kindling: Hickory log, quartered


One (4 to 6 pound) beef brisket

¼ Rib-Ticklin' Rib Rub

3 Tablespoons canola oil


Place some kindling and a few pieces of newspaper sprinkled with canola oil inside your firebox and light it.  Once the fire burns steadily (in about 3 to 4 minutes) add a hickory log.  Bring the temperature inside your smoker to between 225 and 250 degrees F.  (Make sure your thermometer is calibrated correctly.)

Trim the fat cap on the top portion of the brisket if needed, allowing a ¼- to ½ -inch thick cap to remain on the brisket.

Mix the barbecue rub with the canola oil.  It should have the consistency of wet sand.  Rub the entire brisket with the rub—front, sides, in all cracks and crevices.  Place the brisket fat- side up on the smoker.  Place a foil loaf pan full of water as close to the firebox as possible and replenish the water as needed.

Maintaining a temperature between 225 and 250 degrees F, smoke the brisket for 8 to 9 hours (45 to 60 minutes per pound).  You will need to check your temperature, adjust the vent, or replenish the wood, every 20 minutes during the smoking time.

Do not flip, turn, or poke the brisket with a fork at any time during the smoking process.  When an instant thermometer reads between 190 and 200 degrees F, the beef is done.  At Dickey's we perform what's called a "fork test." We place a meat fork in the fatty end (the deckle) of the brisket, and gently turn.  If the meat is done, it should turn without resistance.

Place the brisket on a chopping block, and let it rest for 15 to 25 minutes.  Slice against the grain, and serve.


Rib-Ticklin' Rib Rub

Yields about 5 cups


½ cup salt

1 cup sugar

¼ cup paprika

1 ½ tablespoons granulated garlic

½ tablespoon ground cumin

1 ½ tablespoons lemon pepper


Thoroughly combine all ingredients.  You can store this rub in an airtight container for up to three months.

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