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How long to smoke a brisket at 225? (Explained!)

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How long to smoke a brisket at 225

A lot of people wonder how long it actually takes to smoke a brisket at around 225°F.

For most cuts of brisket, it is solely dependent on how much it weighs. 

On average, most briskets will have a cook through rate of 1 hour per pound.

That is solely derived from a temperature reading in the smoking chamber of 225°F. 

Smoking anything at 225°F is what is known as low and slow. 

In other words, it will take a very long time for any sizable cut of brisket to finish.

That is why I am always a huge proponent of cooking brisket a little bit hotter than just 225°F so you don’t have to waste all your precious time.

How long to smoke a 17 lb brisket at 225

Since we’ve already established that it takes about 1 pound per hour to cook any size of brisket at 225°F, it should take roughly 17 hours to cook a 17 pound brisket at that temperature range. 

You should be asking yourself though, if you really want to sit around that long and smoke a piece of meat for over 17 hours?

I sure don’t, which is why I suggest cranking up the ambient temperature in the smoking chamber to at least 275°F or hotter.

That should directly cut the cooking time in half.

Not only that, but the result of a hotter cook for brisket can be just as good if not better than the results than you would get with a low and slow cooked brisket.

How long to smoke a 4 lb brisket at 225

Since most briskets cook at 1 pound per hour, at 4 pound brisket smoked at 225°F should be finished in about 4 hours. 

That is still an acceptable timeframe to continue smoking it at that low of a temperature range.

Anything more than about 5 to 10 pounds of meat, and I would always certainly suggest smoking at hotter temperatures just so you don’t have to wait around too long.

Is it better to smoke brisket at 225 or 250?

Smoking a brisket at 225° versus 250° it’s not that much of a difference to be completely frank.

What you will notice though, is if you were to smoke it at a slightly higher temperature, around 275°F or hotter. 

That would start to cut cooking time in half.

But if you’re wondering if it’s better to smoke a brisket at 225° or 250°, just lean more towards 250°. 

That’s only because it will take slightly less long to cook through any type of brisket or size of brisket for that matter.

How long does a 13 pound brisket take to smoke at 225?

If you happen to have one of those large briskets that weigh in at 13 pounds, and you are expecting to have a consistent temperature reading in the smoking chamber of 225°F, then expect to be shoveling wood and fuel into the firebox for over 13 hours. 

That simply is because of the 1 pound per hour cooking rate that you should expect on average at that temperature range. 

Once the internal temperature reaches 200°F you’ll want to grab a toothpick and make sure it can slide in to the meat like a warm stick of butter.

How long does it take to smoke a 19 lb brisket at 225?

For the really big monster size briskets weighing in at about 19 pounds or more, you’ll definitely have to be tending to the fire and your piece of barbecue for over 19 hours at that lower temperature range. 

Don’t do that to yourself. 

At least try to crank the heat up to about 275°F for about half that timeframe.

Can you overcook brisket at 225 degrees?

You can overcook anything given enough time. With a cooking temperature of about 225°F, you can definitely have a propensity to overcook piece of brisket. 

An overcooked brisket will have the signs of being far too crumbly and dry.

All the connective tissues in the meat have been given way too much time to cook through, leaving them all tapped out.

Instead, you should always be at least monitoring the internal temperature of your brisket more so than the ambient temperature of the smoker. 

Final thoughts

Most briskets on average will cook through at a rate of about 1 pound per hour at 225°F.

That goes for any type of brisket regardless of a grade, weight, or size brisket. 

To estimate the overall cook time though, just take how much the brisket weighs and multiply it by that ratio.