Corned Beef Brisket - from Scratch

Total Time
Prep 168 hrs
Cook 4 hrs

Plan ahead about a week ... you won't be sorry. This from-scratch corned beef is better than any commercial corned beef you could ever eat, and you'll wonder why you never tried doing it yourself before. I do not add salt and peter to my corned beef, so this is not going to have that familiar pink color, but you won't care -- and it's healthier this way.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Combine all of the brine ingredients and bring to a boil, then cool.
  2. In a huge plastic roasting bag (do NOT use a garbage bag), place the beef brisket, the cooled brine, and the 4 garlic cloves.
  3. Make sure that all of the meat is covered by the brine (cutting the brisket in pieces if you need to), tie off tightly, place in a pot large enough to hold it all, and refrigerate for 6 to 7 days, turning occasionally.
  4. After the 6 to 7 days, remove brisket from the brine and discard the brine.
  5. Rinse the meat thoroughly, then place in a Dutch oven or other large pot and add enough water to come up 2/3 to 3/4 of the way up the side of the meat.
  6. Add the rest of the Simmering Liquid ingredients (peppercorns, mustard seeds, allspice, cloves and garlic), bring to a boil and skim off any foam.
  7. Reduce heat to a low simmer and cook, covered, for at least 3 hours, but 4 hours doesn't hurt anything. Meat will be SO tender and delicious!
Most Helpful

My DH made this for our annual St Paddy's day party and it was a hit! It was a little dry but that may be because we didn't use a big enough pot (it was a tight fit for the 8lb brisket). When the beef was done he removed it from the simmering liquid and threw in a quartered onion, 3 heads of cabbage (quartered), and potatoes (halved). These were some of the BEST potatoes I've ever had - I'd make the simmering liquid again just to cook veggies!!! Thanks for a great recipe!

Dee Licious March 20, 2010

I have been looking for a simple how to recipe . This sounds perfect. I will be using venison . I can't believe it is this simple. I paid way too much $$$ for the butcher to make this for me.

jburr01 September 28, 2009

Totally AWESOME five stars for leaving out the saltpeter......

20 stars for this simple recipe keeping them simple always make for better meals.... Thanks Angie Ed's a lucky Guy

czacc September 19, 2010