Easy Baked Beef Brisket

Not only is this apple and onion smothered beef brisket easy and delicious, it's also very fast (for a brisket recipe)! Cooking it low and slow often results in dried-out meat, so instead we dial up the temperature slightly and bake it in about half the time to ensure it's both tender and moist.

Easy Baked Beef Brisket
  • 3 pounds first-cut brisket (or flat-cut), trimmed of fat

  • 4 teaspoons kosher salt

  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

For the Braising Liquid:

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 1 large yellow onion, sliced

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced

  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary

  • 1 cup apple juice

    1. Season both sides of the brisket generously with salt, pepper, and cayenne. For best results, place brisket over an aluminum foil "rack" set over a plate and refrigerate, uncovered, 8 to 12 hours.
    2. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
    3. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and salt. Cook and stir until translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, rosemary, and apple juice. Increase heat to high and boil until liquid is reduced by about half, about 3 minutes.
    4. Transfer half of the apple-onion mixture into a baking dish. Place brisket fat-side up on top; cover with remaining apple-onion mixture. Cover baking dish tightly with foil.
    5. Bake in the preheated oven for 1 hour 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 250 degrees F (121 degrees C) and bake until fork-tender, about 2 hours 15 minutes. Check for doneness after 2 hours.
    6. Transfer brisket to a plate and tent with foil.

    7. Pour the onions and braising liquid into a large measuring cup or bowl. Skim some fat off the top. Puree with a stick blender to create a gravy.

    8. Slice brisket across the grain and serve with the gravy.

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