When to Wrap A Brisket


Wrapping a brisket up in aluminum foil or butcher paper is a very important step in cooking it.

Encasing brisket allows it to be cooked faster. This is because once it is wrapped in butcher paper or foil, a conductive layer of moisture is formed with its own grease. This layer allows more heat to reach the brisket without burning its surface.

Brisket on a Foil

If the brisket is not encased as such, the water from the meat will begin to evaporate.  This usually happens at 165 degrees Fahrenheit, and cools the entire cut, stopping the cooking process. 

For this reason, it’s essential to know when exactly the cooking process is interrupted and the brisket needs to be insulated with a wrapping of butcher paper of aluminum foil. We’re here to tell you exactly when to wrap a brisket.

How Many Hours Before You Wrap a Brisket?

The brisket should be allowed to cook unwrapped for around 4 hours before it begins to stall. 

However, instead of the time, the best way to ensure when it’s time to wrap it up is by observing its temperature. As soon as the internal temperature reaches 165 to 170 degrees Fahrenheit, the brisket is ready to be wrapped.

Do You Wrap Brisket Before or After the Stall?

The brisket is to be wrapped as soon as stalling of the meat begins

The brisket stalling is a process that temporarily seemingly stops the cooking process of the meat. 

At this particular point, the meat no longer increases its internal temperature, and the increased heat simply burns the surface of the meat.

For any price of brisket, you can never tell how long the stalling period will last. It can take anywhere under 7 hours, and sometimes even more than that until the temperature can begin rising again to cook the meat.

To prevent the cooking gap caused by stalling, the brisket is wrapped as soon as stalling begins.

Can You Wrap a Brisket Too Early?


Wrapping a brisket too early will prevent it from being cooked as much as it needs to be cooked before its stalling period, ruining the end result.

What Happens When You Wrap a Brisket Too Early?

If you end up wrapping the brisket before its internal temperature reaches 165 to 170 degrees Fahrenheit, the bark of the brisket is ruined. It becomes soft, wet and mushy.

See also: Resting a Brisket

Is It Necessary to Wrap a Brisket?


Wrapping a brisket is absolutely necessary because without it, the meat begins to stall and doesn’t cook any further. Increasing the heat will only burn the surface of the meat instead of cooking it any further.

This is because, without a wrap, the water starts evaporating from the surface of the meat.

However, when it’s wrapped in butcher paper or foil, the moisture cannot evaporate since there is no air that it can go to.

This allows the brisket to be surrounded by a layer of its own grease or moisture. These juices then remain hot as long as there is less air surrounding the brisket.

Gradually, the temperature of the brisket will then keep rising, causing the brisket to be further cooked and become more tender and juicy.

Wrapping it Up

Wrapping a brisket up is a very essential part of its cooking process.

However, messing up the wrapping time will ruin the end product that you desire, therefore we compiled this article to help you know exactly when to wrap a brisket.

Happy cooking!

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Tyler Lachance is a cookout professional. His expertise on cooking grilled food, creating marinades, formulating sauces and matching his food with the perfect drink is unrivaled.

Born and raised in a family that has a long history of cookout, he has treated this activity as a part of his culture and who he is.