From Aaron Franklin's MasterClass

Smoke: Brisket Part II

In the second phase of our 12-hour brisket smoke, Aaron shares his techniques for spritzing, getting a derailed cook back on track, and pushing through the stall while maintaining a clean and steady fire.

Topics include: Spritz and Check · Managing Your Fire · The Stall · Knowing When to Wrap


In the second phase of our 12-hour brisket smoke, Aaron shares his techniques for spritzing, getting a derailed cook back on track, and pushing through the stall while maintaining a clean and steady fire.

Topics include: Spritz and Check · Managing Your Fire · The Stall · Knowing When to Wrap

Aaron Franklin

Teaches Texas-Style BBQ

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[MUSIC PLAYING] - So we're just about three hours into this brisket cook. We're going to lift up the lid. We're going to spritz it a little bit. I usually use apple cider vinegar. I use that for pork at the restaurant. And I'm just too lazy to have two sprayers. I don't think it makes that much of a difference. It could be water. It could be beer. Some people use apple juice, which I think has a little too much sugar for this. I'm mostly just sprinting things not for flavor but just to cool off some of the edges that have a tendency to get a little bit too hot. I'm just trying to even out the cook. A lot of times, most people think it's like a fine mist. I do not like that. I like it to go out and just feather out a little bit, so you could direct it right where you want it. Like, if something is getting a little dry in there, it's like [SPRITZING]-- just kind of go to town. You don't get everything wet. It's just really, really specific. So I'm going to take a look. Have a looked at this. I suspect it's looking pretty good. Oh, my, it's not terrible. So what we're looking at here-- we were talking about it earlier. I don't want this ridge to dry out too much right here. I want to look at this edge. It's got a nice, mahogany color. You can see the fat kind of poking out down here. It hasn't started to render yet. Because we're only three hours in. The edges are right here looking really, really pretty. The bark-- the color of this is super consistent across the top. So this is really going to be about the first check on this brisket where you start to see some color formation. You can start to see the bark. But this is also a really great time where, if it's cooking a little bit too hard or something's going wrong, you can still catch it, and you can still kind of fix it. So this thing is looking really nice. It doesn't really look like it needs sprinting too much, but I'm going to kind of hit that edge. And instead of just spraying it, I'm just going to go back and forth-- much along the same lines is how I put on the seasoning. I want to start over here, and I'm going to finish over there. So I'm just going to kind of get a feel for it like that. And then I'm going to kind of spot that ridge right there. I want to hit that, want to hit that. And I'm done. I'm out. It's looking real nice. The fact that a brisket takes so long to cook-- it can be a little bit forgiving. If you get a little bit off track-- let's say, an hour so-- you can kind of bring it back. You can still have a pretty darn good brisket out of it. The more you do it, the better you get at it. But it really is a fairly forgiving piece of meat. In three hours, if you open up the lid, the brisket looks super messed up-- it might have some really crispy edges. Maybe the bark is really splotchy. Maybe it's too dark. If it already looks kind of black at this point, you've probably got some really dirty smoke going on it. This...

The art of smoke and fire

Once a backyard hobbyist, Aaron Franklin is now the James Beard Award-winning owner of Franklin Barbecue, where the line for his famous smoked brisket is hours long. Now the Central Texas barbecue specialist teaches you his meticulous low and slow process for mouth-watering ribs, pork butt, and brisket. With perfectly seasoned cuts and optimal temperatures, you'll learn to handle an offset smoker like a true pitmaster.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

The video is great but the master class website isn’t user friendly

I've cooked brisket for several years, and I've had lots of happy family and friends as a result. However, through this class, I've learned that I HAD NO IDEA HOW MUCH I DIDN'T KNOW about smoking meat. I've been inspired. It's like I get to start back at the beginning and really develop my own style of BBQ. I can't wait to get started!!!

I learned why the brisket I cooked ten years ago did not turn out well. My wife does not want me to try another one but I will now take the chance.

Truly amazing! Very well done and great content. You can tell that Aaron is super passionate about his craft and that is very inspiring. Great tips and tricks. I also enjoyed the back story on Franklin BBQ and BBQ in central Texas.


A fellow student

So my offset smoker is at my Dad's house. Given the way the heat works with a Green Egg, would you put it fat side down to protect it from the hot spots? Or still fat side up?

Steven H.

If the meat will not take on any more smoke flavor after 8 hours, why not just finish in the oven at a consistent heat. That would free up the smoke for other food. Any thoughts?

A fellow student

What is your rule of thumb for cooktime per lb of meat? Is this after trimming weight?

Alvaro P.

Hello everyone, Could someone tell me the internal temperature that the brisket is at the time the stall starts, at the time it ends (to wrap) and the internal temperature to remove the brisket from smoker?

Thomas P.

You know what's weird, is that after all the campfires I've built a lot of this I already knew but for some reason it never clicked in my head for cooking until hearing it out loud.


12 hours to make your own food? You can't be serious.... Why not eat out, it is way cheaper and you can be in and out in minutes and on with your life.


Hey guys, make sure you join Aaron's Community! There you can discuss BBQ techniques and other class material, network with other BBQ-loving students, trade recipes and stay up to date on class contests & activities. Here's the link: