Brisket is a meal that everyone loves, and it’s perfect for dinner parties and special occasions. When brisket is done right, it’s tender shredded meat with a tangy, sweet and sour sauce will quickly become one of your family’s “special dinners”. But the truth is- this Instant Pot version of a high holiday brisket is so easy, that any old weeknight is an excuse to serve it up!
Tragically for me, Brisket is not a traditional recipe that was served in my house. I didn’t try it till I was an adult. For my first Brisket encounter I enjoyed a more Texas style, BBQ pit smoked version! It was love at first bite!
Now Smoked BBQ Brisket is AWESOME, but that’s another recipe entirely. This recipe more leans on the traditional holiday Jewish/ Eastern European version, where the cut of beef is braised with onions, garlic, smokey spices, red wine or vinegar, tomato sauce (or paste in this case). Its aromatic and savory, very similar to a pot roast if root vegetables are being added. Brisket is loved for its tender quality and how it flakes apart so gently that it practically melts in your mouth.
This is a perfect recipe for entertaining because the flavors are even more enhanced after a day in the refrigerator! To make in advance you would simply follow the recipe below, but then add the sliced brisket and sauce to a baking dish, cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days. When ready to serve reheat by placing covered baking dish in 300 degree oven and warming for about one hour until sauce is bubbling.
WHAT IS BRISKET?
Brisket is a beef cut taken from the breast section of the cow. It comprises the pectoral muscles of the cow, which supports much of the animal’s weight. So as you can imagine, brisket can be a large cut of meat, between 3 and 8 pounds, and is rich in the connective tissue collagen, which makes the meat very tough. It is widely available at most supermarkets. In fact, on this particular day I purchase my Brisket from Trader Joe’s! When buying for a your family or a crowd, a good rule of thumb is to consider a 1/2 lb. per person being served.
HOW TO COOK BRISKET
As with any tough or fatty cut of meat, low and slow is generally they way to break down the collagen in the connective muscle tissues to achieve tenderness. I’ve cooked Brisket in both an Instant Pot and a Crock pot, and I can tell you that my preference is hands down the Instant Pot! In fact, have you read my recipe title? This is the first time I’ve used the Instant Pot for a brisket recipe- and I’m not kidding – it’s THE BEST I ever had!
HOW TO MAKE BRISKET IN THE INSTANT POT
First you will need to give the Brisket an extra boost of flavor by applying a dry rub. I used a combination of kosher salt, garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, black pepper, brown sugar, mustard powder. Did this in the morning, and let it chill in the fridge for a few hours before cooking. But if you don’t have that kind of time on your side, an hour with the rub would do.
Using “saute” feature of Instant Pot with add olive oil, onions and garlic to pot. Saute 3-5 minutes until just softened but not browned. Turn Instant Pot “off” add red wine, tomato paste, Worcestershire, smoked paprika, rosemary, thyme, bay leaves and salt in Instant Pot. Stir to combine.
Next, nestle the brisket over top of liquid, and press down to partially cover meat. Close lid, seal vent press “pressure cook” on high pressure for “70 minutes” . When timer goes off let Instant Pot use the natural release function for 10 minutes.
Turn Valve for quick release. Remove brisket and set on cutting board, cover with foil and let rest for 10 minutes rest, before slicing. Resting the meat allows for the juices to settle back into the fibers of the meat, if you cut too soon you will loose all that onto the cutting board.
While the meat is getting a little time out, press “saute” on Instant Pot to bring sauce in pot to a boil. Add 2 tbsp arrowroot flour or cornstarch to thicken sauce. Whisk to incorporate flour , let thicken and reduce for the 10 minutes that meat is resting. This will give the sauce a thicker, more gravy like consistency.
At this point, a signals should be pointing to “YES” and its time to slice the Brisket against the grain and spoon the sauce from instant pot over meat and serve warm.
I served with my :
Which was absolute perfection!!
The Very Best Brisket- Instant Pot Recipe
- Pressure Cooker AKA Instant Pot
- 3 lb beef brisket
- 4 cloves garlic smashed
- 1 yellow onion sliced
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 oz tomato paste
- 1 cup red wine full bodied
- ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves minced
- 1 tsp fresh rosemary leaves minced
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 2 tbsp arrrowroot flour or cornstarch
- 2 tbsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1½ tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- ½ tsp mustard powder
- Combine all of the dry ingredients in small mixing bowl. Set aside.
- Remove brisket from is packaging and pat dry with paper towel. Place on baking sheet and apply dry rub seasoning generously on all sides. Chill in refrigerator for at least 1 hour. You could go longer, I did 6 hours.
- Using "saute" feature of Instant Pot with add olive oil, onions and garlic to pot. Saute 3-5 minutes until just softened but not browned. Turn Instant Pot "off" add red wine, tomato paste, Worcestershire, smoked paprika, rosemary, thyme, bay leaves and salt in Instant Pot. Stir to combine.
- Lay brisket over top of liquid, and press down to partially cover meat.
- Close lid, seal vent press "pressure cook" on high pressure for "70 minutes"
- When timer goes off let Instant Pot use the natural release function for 10 minutes.
- Turn Valve for quick release. Remove brisket and set on cutting board, cover with foil and let rest for 10 minutes rest, before slicing.
- Meanwhile, press "saute" on Instant Pot to bring sauce in pot to a boil. Add 2 tbsp arrowroot flour or cornstarch to thicken sauce. Whisk to incorporate flour , let thicken and reduce for the 10 minutes that meat is resting.
- Slice Brisket against the grain. Spoon gravy/ sauce from instant pot over meat and serve warm.