Culinary Arts

How to Wrap Smoked Brisket With Pitmaster Aaron Franklin

Written by MasterClass

May 24, 2019 • 2 min read

While not all pitmasters wrap their meat in the final stages of a cook—in barbecue circles, wrapping in foil is known as the “Texas crutch”—wrapping is an effective way of finishing a long cooking time without drying out the meat and keeping a steady internal temperature. Wrapping also captures the meat’s fat and juices, so they can be reabsorbed once the meat is taken off the smoker to rest.

Award-winning Austin, Texas barbeque pitmaster Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue wraps beef brisket using wide rolls of uncoated butcher paper. You can wrap the beef brisket in aluminum foil if you like, but butcher paper is more breathable and traps less steam, keeping the brisket moist during the cooking process without making the bark soggy. If you prefer a super crunchy bark you can also leave the brisket unwrapped, though you’ll need to be careful it doesn’t dry out throughout the cook time.

In Aaron’s method, you wrap the brisket in the 4th stage of the 12-hour, 6-stage cook. Learn Texas barbeque pitmaster Aaron Franklin’s method for how to wrap brisket below.

Close

How to Set Up the Wrap

For the wrap, you’ll need two wide sheets of aluminum foil or butcher paper that are four times longer than your brisket is wide. Place one sheet of paper on your workstation, with the long edge running perpendicular to you. Place the second sheet on top so it overlaps by about half its width. Lay the brisket lengthwise across the paper, presentation side up, about one foot from the bottom edge. Give the brisket one last spritz anywhere that needs a little moisture, then lightly spritz the surface of your wrap for good measure.

Aaron Franklin’s Step By Step Guide to Wrapping Brisket

1. Fold the bottom edge of your paper over the top of the brisket and pull it as tight as you can. Every fold you make should conform with the shape of the brisket.

Aaron Franklin wrapping meat in red paper step 1

Close

2. Tightly fold in one side of the paper over the flat, so that it conforms to the shape of the brisket and runs at an obtuse angle away from you. Smooth out the paper.

Aaron Franklin wrapping meat in red paper step 2

Close

3. Tuck part of the paper on the opposite side under the point to secure it, then fold in the paper over the top, so that it conforms to the brisket and runs at an obtuse angle away from you. Smooth out the paper.

Aaron Franklin wrapping meat in red paper step 3

Close

4. Holding the wrap tightly around the brisket on all sides, roll the brisket over and pull tightly to secure the paper. Fold in the sides again.

Aaron Franklin wrapping meat in red paper step 4

Close

5. Fold the top end of the paper over to double its thickness.

Aaron Franklin wrapping brisket in red paper step 5

Close

6. Roll the brisket over one more time. The presentation side should now be facing upward with a double layer of wrap beneath it and the wrap tightly surrounding it on all sides.

Aaron Franklin wrapping meat in red paper step 6

Close