Brisket is a staple of Texas barbeque culture for the summer. Thousands of people go to restaurants in Dallas and Austin to get some of the most iconic barbeque food in the sandwich.
The value of brisket is in how juicy and succulent it is for most people to eat. You can serve it on a sandwich, in tacos, on a burrito or so much more.
However, making good brisket takes a lot of effort and isn’t accommodating to everyone’s diet. These are a few different substitutes if you can’t get that exact brisket you eat during the summer.
Best brisket substitutes
The best brisket substitutes are either chuck or short ribs, as they’re still close to the brisket as a cut. If you want to try out different meats, you can also opt for roast pork, lamb, or poultry thighs.
Making brisket requires that you have enough money or even have the proper set-up to get it right. Most people can’t wait for hours to make brisket or buy a smoker that costs hundreds of dollars.
Even buying the brisket just by itself would be very expensive. But what isn’t expensive are the other kinds of meat that will make it easier for the average person to experience something similar.
Chuck roast has long been thought of as a family meat that can serve everyone at the dinner table. It cooks really well, is very rich, and is very similar to brisket in many ways.
The biggest difference is that chuck roast comes from the shoulder and neck, and isn’t going to cost you nearly as much as brisket roast.
Now let’s talk about how to roast it. First, you want to fry the roast on both sides in a pot. Add flour, garlic, tomato paste, and some red wine and mix. After that, mix in maple syrup, paprika, lemon juice, black pepper, garlic powder, unsalted butter, and vinegar in that pot.
Roast it at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 3 hours, or until tender. To make sure it’s really tender, you can marinate it in a mix of all the ingredients above. The wine and vinegar will tenderize the meat and the spices will flavor the entire cut of meat.
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Short rib is one of the best replacements for brisket, and provides you with some of the juiciest options that you can find on the market.
First, you need to fry all of the short ribs that you have in a pan. Then in a cast iron pot, add red chilies, chopped onions, apple cider vinegar, oil, butter, ketchup, black pepper, onion powder, black salt, a few cloves of garlic, brown sugar, cayenne, and some water.
Mix them all in that cast iron pot and cook in an oven for 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 3 hours or until tender. The result is very close to beef brisket and is a great food to eat on its own.
Pork is also a really good option when it comes to getting an alternative to brisket. Pork cuts can be large enough to serve a lot of people and goes really well with sauces.
The best cuts for this are (courtesy of thespruceeats.com):
- pork blade roast
- pork tenderloin
- pork rib roast
- pork top loin roast
- pork sirloin roast
- Boston butts
Before you roast the meat in the tray, season it with salt and pepper and fry it on all sides to develop color. You want to use salt, pepper, apple cider vinegar, some celery, honey, beef bouillon, and 2 cloves of garlic for your roasting sauce.
Let that bake in an oven for 400 degrees Fahrenheit for at least 2 hours. Make sure it has plenty of water and juices, otherwise it will dry out.
Lamb may not be for everyone, but for those who love it it’s an absolute treat. There are a few cuts you can use to make an amazing lamb roast. Whichever you use is up to you, some are more expensive and some are more flavorful.
Keep in mind that lamb, like mutton, has a very strong flavor and the outer membrane needs to be very well cleaned before roasting. We recommend using plenty of rosemary, red wine, smoked paprika, and olive oil for this meat.
Lamb needs to be roast for hours on end, so give yourself plenty of time.
An entire leg of lamb is ideal for serving up to 5 people, as long as you have plenty of side dishes and will serve dessert afterwards. Lamb fills you up very well, so don’t underestimate it.
Easy to carve and very flavorful, it’s both lean and flavorful.
A less expensive cut of lamb, the shoulder is fatter and provides lots of flavor. It’s not as easy to carve, but it’s definitely easier than ribs. It’s best to roast this one on a low over setting for the majority of the day.
Because it’s a joint roast, it will take longer to get the meat to fall off the bones, so give it plenty of time.
While poultry isn’t the most exciting meat out there, it’s definitely one of the easiest to cook. No mater what kind of bird you’re having for dinner, it’s much easier to get it tender than any red meat.
When simulating brisket, you want to fry your thighs on both sides so that they get some color. For your sauce use, ketchup, spicy mustard, garlic, ginger, beef bouillon, butter, half a sliced onion, apple cider vinegar, and brown sugar.
Next bake in roasting trey at 4 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 2 hours. Broiling is optional. After that, the chicken will be very easy to pull.
So we’re going to give you three options, and you pick your favorite according to your budget and tastes.
Easy to find, easy to feed the whole family. Turkey thighs can be roasted and seasoned like any other meat that you love, since they have a pretty deep flavor by themselves.
You can get the entire leg, not just the thighs, and serve juicy, delicious meat for the entire table.
Duck or goose thighs
Way smaller than turkey, both duck and goose cook faster and have a slightly gamey flavor. Because they cook faster, you need to adjust your cooking time and be very, very sure to add tinfoil or some way to trap moisture.
Towards the end of the cooking you can turn on the broiler to brown the skin, but don’t overdo it.
Chicken thighs are the best to do this with, because they are some of the least expensive meats that you can buy on the market. On top of that, thighs have enough fat, to last for a long time and rarely burn.
And since they’re fairly small they can be a good way of managing portions or storing leftovers.
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Beef brisket is a great food to eat and that’s why people want to eat more of it. Unfortunately, not everyone has a smoker or can even live in a place that will allow them to buy a smoker. These substitutes allow you to have great food while not paying the money it would take you to get good brisket.