Delicious slow cooker brisket in a savory and tangy sauce that will quickly become a favorite. So tender it will fall apart as you slice it.Jump to Recipe
Growing up, Lazy Mama (yes, that is my mother) hosted just about every family holiday. It was pretty much a solo act. Other than being asked to set the table, I don't remember being included in the prep process much. Right around the time Mr. Wonderful and I bought our first house, she suggested that "maybe" it was our turn to host. She and Lazy Papa (you can guess who that is) promptly retired, sold their house and moved about two hours away. As they passed by while speeding of town, they slowed down just enough to toss me some old cooking utensils. I was left holding the...soup pot. And basically no idea what to do with it.
This brisket recipe is a slight tweak of one a friend shared. A few years ago, I adapted it to the Slow Cooker and never looked back. Crockpots and briskets are made for each other. The low and slow cooking performs the double function of both tenderizing the meat and intensifying the flavors. If it didn't appear on our holiday dinner table, I think there would be revolt!
How To Make Crockpot Brisket
To make this easy brisket, you will need the following:
- aluminum foil (or a slow cooker liner)
- minced garlic
- French salad dressing
- onion soup mix
Note: Exact quantities can be found in recipe card below
Preparing The Meat
When I make brisket, I make a lot of brisket! This recipe freezes really well for future reheat and eat meals. As such, I generally buy a large, flat, first cut brisket (click here to read about the difference between a 1st and 2nd cut). This flat brisket sometimes comes with a good amount of fat on side. The first thing I do is cut that off. If you are a huge fan of fat, this is certainly an optional step. Some recipes call for removing the fat after cooking. I personally like mine off before hand.
Preparing Slow Cooker
If you are a fan of slow cooker liners, the first step here is to place one in your slow cooker. If you would prefer not to use a liner, line your slow cooker with a very long piece of foil. You will later use the foil (or bag) to cover over your meat, as such, you will need to make sure that your foil is long enough to reach all the way around.
Next place onions and garlic in your crockpot. Place your beef on top of the onion and garlic chunks. Don't worry if it seems like it won't all fit, just cram it in there. The beef will shrink during cooking. I generally fit a 6-7 lb brisket in my 6 quart slow cooker. Pour contents of dressing bottle over beef and fill bottle halfway with water. Shake the bottle so that as much dressing flavor as possible gets into the water and pour over the brisket. Sprinkle onion soup packet over the top of your brisket. Finally, fold the extra foil or slow cooker liner over the top of the brisket so it is as if the meat is in a cocoon. Place lid firmly on slow cooker and cook on low for 8-10 hours.
How To Serve
Once your brisket is fully cooked, you have some choices.
Shredding versus slicing
Shredding or pulling the brisket apart into chunks is one way to prepare this meat for serving. This can be easily accomplished using two forks. The other is slicing. Slicing a slow cooked brisket is not easy. It will be so tender, that it will want to fall apart. To make slicing easier, always allow the meat to rest for a while after cooking. An electric knife can make the job a bit easier. Be sure to cut perpendicular to the way the grain of the beef is running. Once sliced or shredded, return brisket back to your slow cooker and let is soak up all those awesome juices and heat back up to serving temperature.
So many wonderful ways to serve this dish!! I love it in the old, traditional style with baked or mashed potato and some asparagus. The sauce it so delicious it will be great with a side dish that can soak up the extra like potatoes, mashed cauliflower or rice. It is also terrific in hot juicy sandwiches.
How To Store
This dish is delicious right out of the slow cooker. But, leftovers are my personal favorite. Somehow, it seems even better when it is reheated. Leftovers can be stored in airtight containers or zipper top bags. Storing in meal sized portions makes for easy future meals. Your brisket will last 3-4 days in the fridge and 3-4 months in the freezer.
Lazy Slow Cooker Hacks
- Brisket can be a bit fatty. Some people feel that is its charm. I don’t! Not a fan of the fat, I cut off as much of it as I can before I cook it.
- Brisket fat can be hard to trim. I use my electric knife to make it easier. Just make sure to wash it really well in very hot, soapy water before using it to slice the finished brisket.
- I always use a slow cooker liner when making this dish. This is a fully optional step, but without it, clean up can be quite a job. If you don't use a liner, I suggest spraying your slow cooker with a non-stick spray before cooking,
- Make more than you think you need. This will be gobbled up. On the slight chance it isn’t, it freezes and reheats really well!
- This recipe calls for French dressing. My preference is one of the darker (non-creamy dressings) such as Milani’s 1890 or Ken’s Steak House Original.
- This is a great dish if your people will be eating at different times. After the cooking time, turn your slow cooker to low and everyone can have a warm and filling meal, no matter what time they are ready to eat.
Lazy Slow Cooker Brisket
- 6 qt or larger slow cooker
- Knife and cutting board
- slow cooker liner or aluminum foil
- electric knife
- 1 large brisket the one shown was just over 6lbs
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 5 cloves garlic, minced I used roasted, but raw is fine too
- 16 oz French salad dressing of choice I prefer to use one of the darker colored dressings
- 1 packet onion soup mix
- Optional first step:For a leaner finished product, trim fat
- Either place slow cooker liner in pot OR line pot with foil sheet large enough to ultimately fold over the entire piece of meat (if you prefer not to use a liner)
- Sprinkle chopped onions and garlic on bottom of pot.
- Place brisket in pot. Don't worry if it doesn't fit in nicely. Just stuff it in there. It will shrink as it cooks. The 6 lb brisket shown was cooked in a 6qt Crock-Pot.
- Pour French dressing over brisket using the whole bottle
- Fill the empty dressing bottle about half way with water and give it a good shake. Pour the contents over the brisket. Between the water and the dressing, the brisket should be completely covered.
- Sprinkle packet of onion soup mix over top of the dressing.
- Close up plastic liner OR fold foil over brisket until it is fully wrapped. This not only helps with the cooking process, but it allows you the option of adding an additional item to cook, such as potatoes or vegetables.
- Cook 8-10 hours on low.
- Remove from pot and allow to rest for about 15 minutes
- Slice brisket against the grain using an electric knife
- Return sliced brisket to pot and allow to cook on low for another hour or until serving.
Great Crockpot Beef Recipes