Rasheed Philips explains the secret to his delicious brisket recipe

El Toro Brisket recipe by Rasheed Philips, photo provided by Beef's Its What for Dinner
El Toro Brisket recipe by Rasheed Philips, photo provided by Beef's Its What for Dinner /

Fans of the Netflix show American Barbecue Showdown were impressed with Rasheed Philips. While many people dreamed of enjoying those amazing offerings on that food television show, there is no taste-o-vision. Now, Philips is sharing some tips on how to make his delicious brisket recipe.

Anyone who has had a beautifully smoked brisket appreciates that the low and slow method imparts a nuanced flavor in every single bite. It is more than the seasoning or that stunning smoke ring, it is all the parts coming together.

Recently, Rasheed Philips partnered with Beef It’s What’s for Dinner to share his El Toro Brisket recipe. Whether this brisket is served on its own, served in a Pitmaster Taco or enjoyed in another way, it will earn high praises from everyone at the table.

Is there really a secret to a delicious brisket recipe?

While some pitmasters will never share their spice blends, tricks or other tidbits of knowledge of perfecting that smoke, Philips broke down the ingredients in his El Toro Brisket.

Delicious Brisket recipe by Rasheed Philips photo provided by Beef's Its What for Dinner
Delicious Brisket recipe by Rasheed Philips, photo provided by Beef’s Its What for Dinner /

They are:

  • Coarse Black Pepper 1/2 Cup
  • Coarse Salt 1/4 Cup
  • Fine Ground Espresso Coffee 1/4 Cup
  • Habanero Powder 1/4 Cup
  • Chili Lime Powder 1/4 Cup
  • Dijon Mustard

While most of these items are sitting in the pantry, the reality is that it took time to perfect that combination. From the right spice levels to the umami from the coffee, it is all about that right balance.

More importantly, it is about how those ingredients are used. Even if you can get the measurements correct, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the food is on the path to success.

Philips recommends trimming the brisket to the “desired fat ratio level.” That old phrase about fat is flavor still applies, but no one wants a mouthful of fat.

While prepping the brisket, Philips recommends this tip. “Once the brisket is cooked it’s hard to tell which direction the grain is going. Turn the brisket over so the fat side faces down, follow the direction of the muscle structure and cut a small portion of the brisket off in that same direction. Then when the cook is complete you can identify which way to slice and serve.”

Although spice blends are common on brisket, there is a particular reason for the Dijon mustard. Philips shared, “The mustard will act as the binder to help the dry rub adhere firmly when applied.” Make sure that it is evenly coated on all areas.

For the seasoning blend, Philips recommends combining all the ingredients in a mixing bowl or shaker bottle. The key is to mix or shake thoroughly. He suggests making sure, “the salt and other spices get distributed evenly and no salt pockets are formed.”

From there, it is best to coat and/or generously season the brisket. Philips comments, “brisket is a heavy cut of meat so do not be shy with the rub. Make sure to get the edges as well. Season until the yellow of the mustard is covered completely, then let meat rest for roughly 20 minutes.”

Allowing that time to rest is important. Just like a cut of meat needs to rest before slicing, allowing all the seasoning to penetrate the brisket is key to imparting flavor.

Here’s how Rasheed Philips smokes a delicious brisket recipe.

Philips recommends setting the smoker to around 255 degrees. For him, it is important for the temperature to stay with 5 degrees of the 255 mark throughout the cook.

Then, Philips recommends the following. “Set brisket on smoker and monitor cooking temperatures internally. Always cook to USDA safety standards for beef. Now with brisket the temperature to pull from smoker changes depending on the size and feel. I suggest cooking by probe once you have reached the USDA safety internal temperature. Most pull their brisket at 199 or 202 degrees.”

Even though it is tempting to slice into that beautiful cut of meat right away, it does have to rest. Philips said, “Once brisket has reached desired internal temperature, wrap in a small towel and place in a cooler to rest. The longer it can rest the better, 3-5 hours is perfectly fine and your brisket will still be warm enough to slice and serve.”

This delicious brisket recipe will impress even the most discerning barbecue lover. Just remember to thank Rasheed Philips for revealing these secrets.

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