Placing a brisket fat cap up in a big green egg will help to have all the juices melt back into the meat.
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On the other hand, placing the fat cap down while smoking a brisket on a big green egg will help to protect the rest of the leaner parts of the meat from too much direct heat.
A brisket can generally fit on a large big green egg, and you can certainly decide whether to place it fat cap up or down. It is recommended to leave the fat cap on your brisket while smoking it.
You should flip your brisket once it reaches around 160 degrees internal, and will absolutely want to season all areas of your brisket!
Do you cook brisket fat cap up or down?
Cooking a brisket fat cap up or down can produce slightly different results.
The first of which being that with a fat cap up brisket on a big green egg can help to take advantage of the juices melting off.
Some PitMasters will make the case that in placing the fat cap upwards, the oil, moisture, flavor, and juices will seep back into the meat.
In other words, placing the fat cap in an upwards position will help to further baste the meat.
Placing the fat cap on top of the brisket will also help to preserve it.
Many times, if you were to place the fat cap down on a brisket, you will certainly help protect the meat itself, while sacrificing all of the glorious fat.
It’s a trade off!
Benefits of Placing a Fat Cap Up:
- Bastes your brisket
- Keeps moisture prominent on top and throughout the brisket
- Preserves more of the fat cap
Benefits of Placing a Fat Cap Down:
- Protects your brisket from direct heat
- Provides more of a caramelized fat cap (Yum!)
- Adds more charred flavor
At the end of the day, it’s up to you what you want out of your brisket.
That’s what is so cool about barbecue, there are a lot of moving parts to every cook – so every product is different! Some people may be intimidated by all the stuff that can go into smoking a piece of meat, but I would encourage everyone reading to enjoy the process.
Loving to cook barbecue and putting in calculated effort will make your briskets taste so much better!
Will a brisket fit on a large Big Green Egg?
A brisket can absolutely fit on a large Big Green Egg! Just make sure to have the appropriately sized brisket, with no more than 18.5 inches. Otherwise, you will have to look into other methods of placing the brisket on the grates. Methods include folding the brisket, and draping it over some rib racks.
Diameter of Large Big Green Egg
The diameter of a Large Green Egg is roughly 18.5 inches. If you are the type of PitMaster that likes to smoke monster briskets, you may want to look into getting an XL or above sized Big Green Egg.
If you’re still hooked on cooking a very large brisket on a large Big Green Egg, no worries.
You have the ability to implement some workarounds!
Folding your brisket
An option a PitMaster could implement to fit a large brisket on a Large Big Green Egg is to simply fold the brisket over itself. This can be accomplished by simply applying a lot of pressure to the brisket while it is still raw. After you have made it stay into place, go ahead and place it on the grates. It should fit just fine!
Placing Brisket Over Rib Racks
If you don’t want to go to the trouble of having to manually fold your brisket over itself, I don’t blame you.
Another method to use is grabbing some rib racks that you would normally use to place ribs in between, and simply drape the brisket over them. This helps to elevate the brisket within the cooking chamber of the Large Big Green Egg, and helps to preserve room on the grates.
What do you do with the fat cap on a brisket?
You can do all kinds of things with a fat cap on a brisket, ranging from trimming it, leaving it on entirely, scoring it, the list goes on.
One of the things I personally love to do is both score the fat cap and leave all the fat still in tact (no trim).
I find that both scoring the fat cap helps to absorb more of the seasoning that you would be using to flavor your brisket. It also helps to trap more of the moisture rendered when the fat cap starts to melt.
It really adds to more of the flavor profile of your brisket.
Of course, you will want to consider the overarching question as to whether or not to place it fat side up or down.
For me, I always place my briskets fat side down.
When should I flip my brisket?
You should consider flipping your brisket once it reaches the stall. This occurs anywhere from 160 to 170 degrees internal. You don’t want to leave your brisket on the grates for so long that it starts to stick. That would be bad because when you are ready to pull the brisket off the smoker grates, you will risk actually shredding your brisket apart, and you don’t want that to happen.
Therefore, a good rule of thumb is to simply get into the habit of either moving your brisket around the smoking chamber, or flip the side that is touching the grates altogether.
Do you season the fat side of a brisket?
You will want to season all areas of your brisket, including the fat cap. This is to make the most of your cook! Brisket is actually a very large piece of meat, meaning it takes a ton of seasoning to make it taste right.
I’ve had lots of under seasoned briskets, and you definitely should not be eating an under seasoned brisket.
Seasoning the fat side of a brisket ensures to complete your flavor profile.
Brisket fat cap on or off?
Never remove the fat cap off of your brisket! Although brisket is naturally a fatty cut of meat, if you were to completely trim off your fat cap, you would not only be sacrificing a lot flavor that could have been imparted – there will be no protective shielding around the leaner parts of the brisket!
All of this being said though, the fat cap does tend to render down no matter what side you cook your fat cap on.
This article was written by Robert McCall, the founder of bbqdropout.com. Robert also owns and operates the BBQ dropout YouTube channel where he demonstrates his first-hand experience cooking all kinds of meats and strives to provide helpful, authoritative content for people looking how to barbecue.
He primarily hand writes the bulk of the content but occasionally will leverage AI assisted tools, such as chatGPT, to properly edit and format each blog post on this website. This ensures a pleasurable reading experience for visitors. Read more about our editorial policies here. If there are any improvements that can be made to this article, reach out to us directly at email@example.com