Skip to Content

8 Pro Tips If Your Brisket Is Undercooked

We strive to provide you with authoritative, trustworthy, and expert advice. In doing so, the staff at performs extensive research, editing, and fact checking to every post on this webiste. If you feel that this article can improve, please feel free to reach us at

Before continuing this article, I wanted to let you know that I have a YouTube channel where I showcase all sorts of video content related to BBQ. Subscribing would mean a lot to me, and I very much appreicate all the support!

What if brisket is undercooked

If you have an undercooked brisket, then you’ll notice that it is almost Rubbery in nature. What that means is the brisket will be very tough and not edible whatsoever.

The connective tissues have not had a chance to fully render down, which is a common requirement in any piece of barbecue. 

There is high connective tissue content within all briskets.

That means that there is tons of collagen that needs to be rendered down entirely in order for it to be eaten properly. 

This process usually occurs at around 200 degrees Fahrenheit in internal temperature. Letting a brisket be pulled off the smoker before that point, will certainly undercook your brisket. 

Undercooked vs overcooked brisket 

There are a variety of specific characteristics that are present between an undercooked and an overcooked brisket. An undercooked brisket is usually very rubbery and tough in nature.

An over cooked brisket is very dry and crumbly. Both of these are inedible pieces of meat. 

An undercooked brisket is usually prevalent for a piece of meat that has been pulled before it had a chance to reach 200 degrees Fahrenheit and internal temperature.

Regarding over cooked brisket, these usually occur anywhere from above 204 to 205 degrees Fahrenheit and internal temperature.

You certainly don’t want either of these outcomes, which is why it is so critically important to pull the brisket off at around 200 degrees Fahrenheit and once it probes tender. 

What happens if you undercook brisket?

If you happen to under cook a brisket, then you will of course notice that it is very hard to slice into, and once you try to eat it, it is very rubbery and overall just very tough to consume.

You don’t want that to happen, so just always make sure to grab a toothpick and your meat thermometer and only pull it off the smoker once it reaches 200 degrees Fahrenheit, in internal temperature.

Anything below that, and you will most likely always have an undercooked brisket. 

How do you fix undercooked brisket?

If you’re in the market for fixing your undercooked brisket, then take everything that you have and put it back on to the smoker or cooker that you were just using.

You need to let the internal temperature rise above a certain point to where the collagen and connective tissues have had a chance to fully break down.

Contrary to what you may think, even though you may have already sliced into it, putting it back on the cooker is the best thing for you.

If you don’t do that, then you’ll of course just be left with the same undercooked piece of meat that you don’t want to eat. 

The least you could do at that point is just put it back on to the smoker or cooker and see how much more edible it becomes as the college in Begins to break down fully. 

Can the brisket be a little pink?

Your brisket should definitely not be pink. Having a pink brisket would most likely mean that it is severely undercooked.

You’ll also probably notice that it is hard to slice into. That is certainly indicative of a piece of barbecue that has not been cooked all the way. 

Brisket is not like a traditional steak where you want it as pink as possible inside. 

In fact, you want to bring the internal temperature to such a high degree, where all of the fat and connective tissues inside of the meat begin to break down all the way. 

That is what you should always be checking for, and not a pink inside.

Brisket at 200 but not tender

If your brisket is at 200 degrees and internal temperature but not tender, then continue cooking it and reassess the tenderness levels every 30 minutes.

Eventually, you should be able to grab a toothpick and slide it inside of the brisket like it is going into a stick of warm butter. 

One thing you may also want to consider doing afterwards, is trying to calibrate your thermometer properly. You want to have the most accurate reading possible.

So, if your brisket is reporting at 200 degrees Fahrenheit but not priming tender whatsoever, then you may have an inaccurate thermometer. 

Is tough brisket undercooked

Tough brisket is usually undercooked. That’s because a lot of the times the connective tissues have not broken down yet. These connective tissues are exactly what makes brisket so tough.

When you think about it, a brisket is from the breast area of the cow, which needs to sustain lots of moving around, building up tons of muscle mass. This muscle mass is very hard to cut through and his overall just very coarse in nature. 

As with anything undercooked, keep cooking it on the smoker or cooker and let the internal temperature rise to an adequate amount and when the brisket becomes probe tender 

Final Thoughts 

If a brisket happens to be undercooked, there are a variety of mechanisms that you can do to make sure it comes out great.

The first thing you should be doing obviously is putting it back on to the cooker, and letting the internal temperature rise above a specified amount where the collagen begins to render down all the way. 

This helps protect against very tough pieces of barbecue, and certainly will make your brisket nice and juicy.