When you’re craving something meaty, there’s almost nothing better than moist, tender brisket — and it’s great for leftovers too since it can be used in so many ways. The only hitch? Brisket tends to dry out quickly when reheated, leaving you with tough, chewy meat. That’s why we asked pro chefs for the tips and tricks they use in their own kitchens. Keep reading for how to reheat brisket so it tastes as delicious as it did the first time, then scroll on for recipe ideas perfect for weeknight meals.
How to store brisket for juicy leftovers
Surprise! The trick to perfectly reheated brisket actually starts before you even put away leftovers in the fridge. It’s best to store the meat in an airtight environment — that will help the brisket retain the most moisture. Usually this is done by placing the meat in a special bag that allows a vacuum sealer suck out excess air. However, chef Claudia Sidoti shares a more convenient alternative that ensures the meat is juicy and tender when reheated.
- Place the brisket shreds or slices in a sheet of plastic wrap.
- Pour a small amount of the meat’s juices over the brisket and allow it to soak in for a few seconds. Gently gently wrap the meat.
- Cover the plastic wrap in foil and then place the entire package in a plastic bag. Store brisket in the fridge and use within 3 to 4 days for maximum freshness and flavor.
Once when you’re ready to reheat the brisket, choose the method below that fits your time frame — and then savor this hearty beef all over again!
#1 way to reheat brisket: in the oven
If you want your meat to taste like you just cooked it, then the oven is your friend when reheating smoked brisket. “Reheating your brisket in the oven is the best way to ensure your brisket doesn’t go from tender and delicious to chewy and forgettable,” explains Courtney Rada, chef and TV host. The key? Adding all those saved juices and then covering the dish in foil. That traps in moisture to keep the meat from drying out. You can also add beef stock or even a bit of water if needed. Here, Rada describes the five steps for warming up brisket in the oven.
- Preheating your oven to 325°F.
- Take your leftover brisket out of the fridge and allow it to come to room temperature.
- Place the brisket on a baking sheet or dish and drizzle any additional saved juices onto the meat.
- Cover the entire dish in foil.
- Place in the oven and heat for around 45 minutes, until the meat is heated thoroughly and reaches an internal temperature of 165°F.
For fast results: how to reheat brisket in the microwave
To reheat brisket in under 5 minutes, your microwave is the best bet — just be sure to reduce the power to 20% to avoid overcooking and drying out the brisket. According to Sidoti, these five steps are sure to reheat brisket in the microwave so it’s tender a second time around.
- Add the brisket to a microwave-safe container with a lid or plastic wrap.
- Place the dish in the microwave with the power reduced to about 20%.
- Reheat brisket in 30-second intervals, checking the meat’s warmth between each cycle.
- Depending on the amount of brisket that you’re reheating, this can take anywhere from 1 to 4 minutes. But, the meat should be fully warmed and reach an internal temperature of 165°F.
3 leftover brisket recipes
While reheated brisket is yummy on its own or with BBQ sauce, try these recipes if you’re looking to turn the leftover beef into an extra-delicious weeknight meal.
This twist on a Tex-Mex favorite is sure to satisfy — you can customize with whatever leftover veggies you happen to have on hand too.
- 1 cup sautéed peppers
- ⅛ tsp. cayenne
- 4 (8-inch) flour tortillas
- ½ cup shredded brisket
- ½ cup Jack cheese
- Yield: 4 servings
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In bowl, mix sautéed peppers and cayenne. Place 2 tortillas on parchment-lined baking sheet; sprinkle with shredded brisket and Jack cheese. Top with peppers and 2 more tortillas.
- Bake 12 minutes, or until tortillas are browned and cheese oozes out of sides. Transfer to wire rack and cool for 1 to 2 minutes. Slice each quesadilla into even-sized wedges or triangles and enjoy!
Store-bought crust makes it a breeze to whip up this savory pie.
- 1 (12-inch) pizza crust
- 1 cup Alfredo sauce
- 2 cups diced or shredded brisket
- 2 cups shredded white cheddar
- ½ cup crumbled bacon
- ½ cup sliced red onion
- ½ tsp. smoked paprika
- ¼ tsp. salt
- Yield: 6 servings
- Preheat oven to 350°F
- Place pizza crust on parchment-lined baking sheet; top with Alfredo sauce. Sprinkle brisket, white cheddar, bacon, red onion, paprika and salt on top of pizza base.
- Bake until cheese is melted and pizza is golden brown, about 15 minutes. Cool slightly before slicing and serving.
Pasta alla Vodka
A splash of cream adds richness to this classic dish with a meaty twist.
- 3 cups brisket, cut into small cubes
- 1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
- ½ tsp. garlic salt
- 1 lb. cooked pasta of your choice
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 2 Tbs. vodka
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
- Yield: 6 servings
- Heat skillet over medium heat, around 5 minutes.
- Add brisket, tomatoes and garlic salt to pan; cook 10 minutes. As the mixture is bubbling, reduce heat to medium-low; stir in cooked pasta, cream and vodka. Cook another 2 minutes before mixing in parmesan.
- Remove pasta from heat once cheese is melted. Season pasta dish with salt and pepper to taste and serve warm.
For more reheating tips for guaranteed delicious results, click through to the stories below: