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How To Tell If Brisket Is Undercooked? | 5 Ways To tell

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How to tell if brisket is undercooked

A brisket that is undercooked can be very tough to cut through, and is very chewy. It is not easy to eat, and can definitely frustrate anyone who attempt to consume it.

It’s also the sign of a brisket that has not been brought up to the correct internal temperature as well as letting it rest long enough.

The most prominent sign of an undercooked brisket

A prominent sign of and under cooked brisket is that it is tough, chewy, and difficult to slice through. It may even be very cold inside since it has not had enough time to come up to the right internal temperature.

Causes and Solutions of an undercooked brisket

Not pulling the brisket at the right time

Not pulling a brisket at the right time is one of the most common reasons why a brisket may become undercooked. Specifically, you will want to pull the brisket off at around 200°F internal and when it probes tender like the probe is going through a stick of butter. If it does not do the ladder, then you will most likely have an under cooked brisket. 

That is simply because they connective tissue or intramuscular fat, has not had enough time it has not reached the right temperature, to fully break down and make the brisket cooked all the way through.

Inaccurate thermometer

Let’s say you do try to pull the brisket at around 200°F internal. However, if you have an in accurate thermometer, then you will greatly increase the chances of pulling the brisket off at the wrong time. This is simply because an in accurate thermometer will give off bogus temperature readings which will then lead you in the wrong direction.

Make sure to always calibrate your thermometers before cooking important cuts of meat like a brisket. You don’t always have to calibrate your thermometer before ever cook, but just get in the habit of doing so once every so often. 

A great way to calibrate a thermometer in this case is to grab a boiling pot of hot water, wait for it to boil all the way through, and then Test how accurate the thermometer is reading the boiling water temperature at. Once you identify the temperature variance, you can then apply that to further cooks.

Not letting the brisket rest long enough

Pulling the brisket off at the right time is not the only factor that goes into cooking a brisket all the way through. You will absolutely have to let the brisket rest long enough in order for all of the juices and connective tissue to cool down in internal temperature. If you were to not do this, you may risk the brisket even becoming overcooked rather than undercooked.

Making it more tender

A great solution to an under cooked brisket is to make it more tender. Simply, a way to do this is to throw it back onto the smoker or even put it into the oven and begin cooking it until all of the connective tissue begins to fully break down. At this point, you will have a fully cooked brisket.

What to look for when slicing the brisket

When you were slicing a brisket that you suspect is undercooked, you will notice that there are still lines of connective tissue attached to the proteins within the meat. In other words, you will see the proteins and strings in the meat still have visible lines of fat between them, but it will not be broke down. 

You’ll also find that while you are slicing through your particular brisket, it is very hard to do so, and if you were to try and eat any of the slices, they are very chewy and tough to eat. Not only that, they are very un flavorful.

Can you eat undercooked brisket?

You can certainly eat a brisket that has been cooked around 190°F, however, it will still be considered way undercooked because the connective tissue has not had time to break down fully. So, you can eat it, but you would not want to.

Is chewy brisket undercooked?

A chewy brisket is definitely under cooked. A fully cooked brisket never is chewy, but rather is very tender and falls apart with no resistance whatsoever.

Is brisket supposed to be pink in the middle?

Brisket is generally never supposed to be pink in the middle. If you slice of brisket, and it is pink in the middle, you probably have a way under cooked brisket. When you fully cooked a brisket through, it should be an even coloring throughout. It may even have a little burnt crispiness on the outer edge with a beefy brown looking center.