Whether it’s a weekend or a weeknight, you can never go wrong with a delicious meal made with beef brisket. Kick your recipe up a notch by using smoking wood to add unique and smokey flavors to your meal. We compiled a list of firewood that pairs well with beef brisket—next time you’re preparing this meal, consider one of the following smoking woods.
The taste hickory wood can infuse into your beef brisket is described as hearty and savory—it’s also said to have a subtle bacon flavor. The flavor profile of this cooking wood is unmistakable and pairs perfectly with beef brisket. Hickory smoke provides a stronger flavor, so be careful of how much wood you’re adding to your pit or offset smoker so it doesn’t overpower the natural flavors of the beef.
Post oak and hickory are among the most popular and most used woods for smoking a brisket. If hickory has too strong of a flavor for you, you might consider post oak! This wood species is popular because it’s beginner friendly and one of the easiest to use for smoking meats. The flavor notes in this wood are slightly sweet, but they won’t overwhelm the brisket or your taste buds.
Pecan smoking wood is not what barbeque professionals initially gravitate toward for smoking meat because the flavors of the wood aren’t for everyone. However, because not many people consider using this wood, it might just be the secret ingredient for your beef brisket. Pecan has a blend of nutty and sweet flavors. Pro tip: if you need to limit the flavors of this wood, consider mixing in a few splits of post oak to mellow out the flavor.
Mesquite is a cooking wood that packs a hearty punch of bold, earthy flavors, but it is the most challenging wood species to cook with on this list. This wood is challenging to smoke with because it produces a very intense flavor that is difficult to balance in your brisket. That said, when you find the right balance, it can be the best-tasting meat you’ve ever had. If you want the authentic Texan beef brisket flavor, you must use mesquite. Remember, while this firewood pairs well with beef brisket, you need to be careful with how much you’re using, or your brisket might come out tasting too strong and bitter.
If this is your first time smoking beef brisket, we recommend choosing a more beginner-friendly option, like hickory or post-oak. Once you understand the balance of temperature and the amount of wood to add to your smoker, you can begin trying out more challenging wood species, such as pecan or mesquite. Regardless, using any of this firewood can turn your beef brisket into the ultimate meal.