Slow Cooker BBQ Brisket

BBQ Brisket cooked to tender fall-apart perfection in the slow cooker. From choosing the right meat for brisket to the best way to using the right spices, I can teach you all about how to make the very best slow cooker brisket!

I love Brisket. When cooked properly it’s a wonderful piece of meat. My all time favorite version of brisket is made with the classic flavors of a good-old fashioned BBQ sauce.

Plus, it’s made in the slow-cooker, perfect for when you don’t want to turn on your oven, but still crave a comforting and hearty meal!

What is brisket?

Brisket comes from the chest of the cow. It’s a cut of meat that needs to be cooked at a low temperature for several hours to become tender and oh-so-juicy. Although brisket is one of the toughest parts of the animal, when cooked correctly it becomes one of the most flavorful!

While you can cook it in the oven or smoke it in the grill, I find you can’t beat the convenience of slow cooker brisket! It doesn’t heat up the whole house for hours, cooks evenly, and leaves behind tasty juices at the bottom you can spoon over your brisket sandwiches for even more flavor.

When made well, a good brisket will be so tender it nearly melts in your mouth, but is still sturdy enough to hold up to whatever you want to serve it with. It also happens to be relatively inexpensive.

(Isn’t it nice when you love the less expensive meats?)

How to choose the right meat for brisket

Let’s talk about picking the right cut of meat to make a good BBQ brisket.

Most of the flavor in BBQ Brisket comes from the layer of fat on the brisket called, appropriately, the “fat cap.” As the meat cooks, the fat layer melts into the brisket making it juicy.

You can buy the meat trimmed, meaning some of the fat layer has already been removed, or trim it yourself. I recommend buying it already trimmed to save time, but making sure there is still about 1/4 inch of fat cap left. This is the amount of fat I like to ensure the brisket is juicy but not greasy.

When buying a brisket, I also look for a piece of meat that has a nice dark color. The fat stand and cap should be white, not yellow or murky.

If you’re not sure which piece of brisket is best, go ahead and ask the butcher what they recommend.

Slow Cooker Brisket Recipe

Once you have your brisket selected and trimmed, it’s time to get (slow) cooking!

I mixed together my own barbecue sauce in the bottom of the slow cooker before adding the meat. The beer BBQ sauce imbibes the meat with amazing smoky flavor as it slow cooks!

After adding the sauce ingredients, place the brisket in the pot and cover. Cook it on low for 8 hours while the tantalizing smell fills your house!

When it’s finished cooking, remove the BBQ brisket from the slow cooker and let it rest for about 10 minutes. Then slice and serve!

I like to save the juices at the bottom of the crock pot and drizzle a little over the slices of beef before serving, too.

This piece of brisket was enough to feed my family of six, and provide leftovers for lunch the next day. If you’re not picky about having leftovers, it could easily serve 8.

Serving ideas

When making this for dinner, I like to serve in on a plate surrounded by all kinds of our favorite BBQ side dishes.

Try it with baked beans or Potato Salad for that classic barbecue feel. It’s also great with Mac and Cheese or Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes.

We almost always eat our leftover brisket on sandwiches for lunch the next day. Reheat the meat with leftover sauce and pile it on to rolls! So delicious and satisfying.

Leftover brisket can also be chopped into small piece to fill out your lunchtime salad or stuffed into tacos. There are so many ways to get the most out of your brisket!

More Tips & Tricks

  • Storing: Make sure to transfer your brisket to an airtight container before putting it in the fridge. Brisket dries easily so keeping it covered is important.
  • Reheating: For best results, reheat leftover brisket with extra sauce to avoid making it dry or tough. You can wrap it in tinfoil and reheat in the oven or in the microwave, checking after every 1 minute increment to avoid accidentally overheating and making the meat tough.
  • BBQ sauce: If you like a saucier brisket, serve this alongside leftover sauce from the crockpot OR an extra bottle or jar of your favorite barbecue sauce.

Put this brisket in the crock pot in the morning and by dinner time, you’ll be sitting down to the most tender and juicy BBQ Brisket you’ve ever tasted!

Slow Cooker BBQ Brisket


  • 3-4lb Beef Brisket, trimmed
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 12oz beer (I used Goose Island Nut Brown)
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup worcestershire sauce
  • ¾ tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp chili powder
  • 6oz can tomato paste


  1. In bottom of slow cooker, mix the brown sugar, vinegar, mustard, seasonings, tomato paste, garlic and beer together. Lay brisket in slow cooker, cover and turn on low. Cook for 8 hours.
  2. Remove from slow cooker and slice beef. Pour juices over meat and serve. Enjoy!

Did you make this recipe?

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About Aimee

Aimee is a dessert lover (specifically rice krispie treats), workout enthusiast, self-taught foodie, and recipe creator.

Learn more about Aimee.

Affiliate Disclosure:**There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I love! Thank you for supporting Shugary Sweets! See my disclosure policy for more info**

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Posted on June 6, 2012

Comments & Reviews

  1. Hi, don’t know if you see comments on older posts but here goes. This looks divine except I just don’t like beer! Can it go without or can you suggest a substitute? Thanks.

  2. We fixed beef briskets, sealed really tight, and cooked on a slow temperature. Have always been told, to cut it against the grain. This looks like it was cut with the grain, so I was wondering if it was still as tender.

  3. The flavor is preserved and the meat is very soft, surely everyone will love this! Your barbecue brisket recipe is worth trying out, than you for sharing.

  4. This looks awesome! We just got a half of a beef from my brother so I have a brisket sitting in the freezer begging me to eat it:) Thanks for sharing over at Hunk of Meat Monday!

  5. Mmm. I have never had brisket, but every time we go out to our favorite BBQ restaurant, my dad ALWAYS orders brisket. It seems like such an intimidating piece of meat, but this looks so tender and perfect. I must make it next week when the temps raise here in Sacramento and we’ll want something hearty and delish!

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