Beer-Brined Corned Beef

Jan's Beer-Brined Corned Beef

Beer-Brined Corned Beef

  • Ready In

    4 d 7 h 55 m

“Homemade corned beef is brined, smoked, then braised to perfection. Juicy, tender and full of flavor with just a few steps. It is easier than you think! Makes delicious Reuben sandwiches! Divide slices into half-pound portions and freeze, leaving only what you will use over the next few days unfrozen.”


  • Brine:
  • 3 quarts cold water
  • 3 (12 fluid ounce) bottles lager beer
  • 2 onions, cut into wide slices
  • 1 1/2 cups kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 5 tablespoons curing salt
  • 1/4 cup pickling spice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 1 (5 pound) beef brisket, fat trimmed to a thin layer
  • wood chips
  • 2 cups apple juice, or as needed
  • Braising Liquid:
  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) bottle lager beer
  • 1 onion, cut into large slices
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons pickling spice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper (optional)


  1. Place water, 3 bottles beer, 2 onions, kosher salt, 1/2 cup brown sugar, curing salt, 1/4 cup pickling spice, and 2 tablespoons garlic in a very large pot. Stir well until salts are dissolved. Add beef; stir gently. Use a large bowl or heavy plate to keep the beef submerged. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate, stirring once a day, for 4 days.
  2. Soak wood chips in apple juice for 2 hours.
  3. Remove beef from pot, discarding brine, and rinse well until cold water. Let beef come to room temperature.
  4. Preheat an outdoor grill to 150 to 175 degrees F (65 to 80 degrees C). Place soaked wood chips in a shallow aluminum pan on the heat source.
  5. Place meat directly on the grate and allow to smoke for 2 hours.
  6. Combine 1 beer, 1 onion, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 2 tablespoons pickling spice, 2 tablespoons chopped garlic, and black pepper in a large saucepan; bring to a boil. Remove from heat and pour into a large roasting pan. Place beef in braising liquid in the roasting pan and cover tightly with aluminum foil.
  7. Increase grill temperature to 250 degrees F (120 degrees C). Place the roasting pan on the grill and close the lid.
  8. Roast the beef until tender, 3 to 4 hours. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read at least 145 degrees F (60 degrees C).
  9. Remove beef from the roasting pan, discarding braising liquid. Let beef cool until easily handled.
  10. Slice beef into very thin slices across the grain.

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