What to do when smoking beef:
1. Use a high quality piece of meat
Having a high quality piece of meat is the first step to perfecting a cook this summer. Using a Natural Brisket or Natural Picanha is a great way to go, especially because you can feed a lot of people on these big cuts. Higher quality meat will usually have more marbling, and this is crucial when smoking meat. Marbling will keep your meat juicy and stop it from getting dry; high quality cuts will make for maximum tenderness.
2. Keep a good eye on the tempeture
Especially if you are new to smoking meat, it is very easy to lose track of the temperature, as smoking big cuts of meat can take quite a while. Whether you’re playing cornhole or taking a nap, it’s important to stop what you’re doing and check the temperature of the smoker. Crazy things can happen, and the temperature can jump and drop all the time. Most people try to keep it around 225° to 275°, but this can depend on cut of meat, and personal preference. If you are using an electric smoker, this step is much easier, but you may lose out on achieving a flavorful bark that competes with wood smokers.
3. Don’t overdo it
At the end of the smoke, you want the meat to be the star of the show. Yes you’ll probably use rub, and variants of sauce are usually used, but you don’t want to overpower the meat. A lot of avid meat smokers will vouch for just using salt and pepper for a brisket rub. When selecting a wood to smoke with, the same rule applies; wood like mesquite or hickory on a long smoke will overpower the meat. Consider using a more mild wood like oak, pecan, or cherry.