How to get bark on brisket in an electric smoker

Last Updated on: 23rd April 2023, 01:39 am

Bark is a black and hard crust of smoked meat that is produced as a result of various chemical reactions on the meat’s surface.

It enhances the flavor of smoked meat, but to get bark on an electric smoker, you will have to go an extra mile because they can’t heat up to higher temperatures.

Bark on smoked meat comes from various factors, but the most important of them are the effectiveness of wrapping and the rub used on the surface of the meat.

In addition to these , temperature and moisture also play an important role in bark development.

The temperature at which the meat is being smoked is really important for the development of the bark because if the temperature is higher, it will lead to the charring of the meat, while a too low temperature can lead to the softening of the bark.

Bark is everyone’s favorite and you can’t deny its importance.

But it can be really tricky to get a good bark on your meat.

To help you , we have done hours of research and gathered the most effective method for getting bark on your meat.

Here is the step-by-step guide to producing more bark on your meat.

Prepare the rub

As discussed above, rub is one of the most important factors that contribute to the development of bark.

You can use any ingredient for the preparation of rub depending on your personal taste, but you should be careful because it will affect the taste of your bark.

The simplest rub can consist of salt , pepper, sugar, and garlic powder.

You can use the type of spice and amount of spices depending on your choice.

In addition to this, you should consider preparing mustard paste to be used along with it.

Cut the brisket

After you have prepared the rub to apply to your brisket, you should consider preparing your brisket for smoking.

You should keep in mind the general rule of thumb that the higher the cooking area of the brisket, the higher the bark.

The reason behind this is that the bark doesn’t actually come from smoking or cooking, rather it develops only on the outer side due to the application of rub and cooking at a higher temperature.

So if more areas are exposed and covered with rub , you will get more bark.

So it’s better to not place the brisket in a random shape as you bought it, but rather you should cut the brisket properly to allow more for the applying of rub and maximize the chances of rub seeping into the internal side.

Prepare the brisket

After you have sliced the brisket into the proper shape, you should consider preparing it for placement inside the smoker.

First of all, you should consider adding mustard onto the surface of the brisket in paste form.

After you have added mustard to the brisket surface, you should apply the rub to the surface.

After that, you should rub the mixture gently to maximize the chances of the rub seeingping inside the brisket surface and maximize the chances of brisket.

After you apply the rub on one side , you should consider flipping the brisket and repeating the procedure for the other side.

You should be careful about adding the rub properly because it’s the determinant of the bark on the brisket.

Start the smoker

After you have prepared the brisket by cutting properly and adding rub effectively, you should consider starting the smoker to start smoking it.

Electric smokers don’t need much effort for ignition; you just have to set the required temperature and time for smoking.

After that, you should consider adding wood chips inside the smoker to start producing smoke.

The smoke is used to impart different flavors onto the surface of the brisket.

If you use more wood chips, then it will give you a better flavor, but you should be careful about that because too many wood chips can also result in a bitter flavor due to thick smoke.

In addition to the amount of wood chips, the type of wood is also important for the production of better flavor.

The flavor of smoked brisket comes from wood , so it’s best to select the appropriate type of wood for smoking.

You should research for some time and use the best one available.

Place the brisket

After the wood chips have started producing smoke, you should consider placing the brisket inside the smoker to start cooking it.

The brisket should be placed on the cooking racks at a higher temperature so that the outer surface should become crispy.

You should avoid using a water pan inside the smoker if you are aiming to produce more brisket.

Although it’s important to maintain humidity when smoking, when smoking brisket, the bark can become soft and sappy.

When placing the brisket inside the smoker, you should make sure to keep the fat side down so that it gets more heat.

After that, you should consider smoking it for 4-6 hours and keep checking the internal temperature frequently to avoid temperature fluctuations.

After 4 hours, you should consider removing the brisket from the smoker and wrapping it inside butcher paper, and then placing it inside the smoker again to evaporate the meat juices properly.

The outer side should be crispy for the development of bark.

Remove the brisket once done

After the juices have been evaporated and the brisket has been smoked completely,you should consider removing it from the smoker.

Hopefully it would have a good amount of bark on it until now but if not, then you should consider heating it once at higher temperature before serving.

Why is my brisket not getting a bark?

The development of bark on brisket is the result of a chemical reaction which may go wrong due to different factors which can result in the production of bark.

The most common reason for the absence of bark is using the wrong ingredients for the preparation of the rub.

In addition to that, the absence of smoke can also result in the absence of bark on the brisket.

The smoke is the determinant of the taste of the brisket, but it also helps in the development of the bark by sticking to the brisket surface and evaporating any liquid.

Furthermore, the temperature of the smoker can also affect the development of bark.

If you are smoking at a low temperature, then there will be fewer chances of getting bark because bark develops at higher temperatures due to evaporation of liquids.

Is it necessary to wrap my brisket?

The wrapping of the brisket depends on your personal choice, but most pitmasters prefer to wrap the brisket due to its many benefits.

The most important of those is that it helps to cook brisket quickly by retaining the heat .

In addition, it also helps in preventing the over-smoking of brisket because over-smoking can lead to the bitterness of the brisket.

So it’s a huge relief when you have smoked the brisket but want to cook it for a little longer.

Although it has several advantages, it can also damage the bark of the brisket.

If the brisket is wrapped, the bark may become soft and sappy.

So, if you want to enjoy better bark, avoid wrapping.

You should consider comparing these and deciding which one you prefer.

The bottom line:

Getting bark on brisket in an electric smoker is similar to getting it in a traditional smoker .

although it may require a bit more effort due to lower temperatures.

You should consider following this guide to keep yourself at the safe end.

If you have enjoyed this article ,then make sure to check our article on How to smoke cheese in an electric smoker

Jakob miller