How To Cook A Brisket On A Charcoal Grill

When it comes to cooking a brisket, there are many ways to do it. However, cooking a brisket on a charcoal grill is one of the most flavorful methods. In this article, we will discuss the steps to cook a brisket on a charcoal grill and some tips to make it delicious.

Preparing the Brisket

Before you can cook a brisket on a charcoal grill, you need to prepare the meat correctly. Begin by trimming any excess fat from the brisket to prevent flare-ups during cooking. Once trimmed, season the brisket with your preferred rub or marinade.

Lighting the Charcoal Grill

To cook a brisket on a charcoal grill, you need to light the grill properly. Fill a chimney starter with charcoal, and light it using a lighter cube or matches. Once the coals are hot and ashy, dump them into the grill’s bottom.

Setting Up the Charcoal Grill

After lighting the grill, you need to set it up correctly. Place a drip pan in the grill’s center and fill it with water. This will help regulate the temperature and keep the brisket moist. Then, place the cooking grate on top of the grill and adjust the vents to achieve your desired temperature.

Cooking the Brisket

Now that your grill is set up, it’s time to cook the brisket. Place the brisket on the cooking grate, fat side up, over the drip pan. Cover the grill with the lid and let the brisket cook for several hours. Depending on the size of the brisket, it can take anywhere from 6 to 12 hours to cook.

Monitoring the Temperature

While the brisket is cooking, it’s crucial to monitor the temperature. Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the brisket. The ideal temperature for a cooked brisket is around 200°F.

Adding Charcoal and Wood Chips

To maintain the temperature and add flavor, you may need to add more charcoal and wood chips during the cooking process. Add more charcoal as needed to keep the temperature consistent. Add wood chips to the coals to create smoke and enhance the brisket’s flavor.

Resting the Brisket

Once the brisket reaches the desired temperature, it’s time to take it off the grill. However, before serving, it’s crucial to let the brisket rest for at least 30 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, making it tender and juicy.


Q: How long does it take to cook a brisket on a charcoal grill?

A: It can take anywhere from 6 to 12 hours to cook a brisket on a charcoal grill, depending on the size of the brisket.

Q: Should I wrap the brisket in foil when cooking on a charcoal grill?

A: Wrapping the brisket in foil can help it cook faster and become more tender. However, it can also prevent the brisket from developing a crusty bark.

Q: What temperature should I cook a brisket on a charcoal grill?

A: The ideal temperature for cooking a brisket on a charcoal grill is around 225°F.


Cooking a brisket on a charcoal grill can be a delicious and rewarding experience. By following these steps, you can cook a perfect brisket that will impress your friends and family. Remember to monitor the temperature, add charcoal and wood chips as needed, and let the brisket rest before serving. With a little patience and practice, you can become a master at cooking brisket on a charcoal grill.