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Home-Cured Brisket (Corned Beef)

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“I love to try things from "scratch". This recipe also gave me the opportunity to lower the salt and not add nitrates as store-boughts do. Originally came from Cook's Illustrated, but OF COURSE I had to add a few things!”
120hrs 15mins

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Take the brisket and pierce it with a knife or tenderizer. Do each side at least 15x. Place brisket in 1 gallon plastic baggie.
  2. Mix all other ingredients together in a bowl or 2 cup measuring cup.
  3. Reaching inside baggie, sprinkle 1/2 the mixture over the brisket. Turn baggie over and repeat, sprinkling the other side. Seal the baggie after expressing as much air as possible.
  4. Place the bagged brisket in a dish large enough to hold it. It must then be weighted. You can use some cans from the pantry. I used 2 fairly heavy casserole dishes that nested, and placed the second on top of the brisket.
  5. Put the dish with the brisket in the refrigerator. I used bottom shelf in the back as it is the coldest spot. The brisket should be turned over 1x each day for at least 5 days, and no longer than 7 days.
  6. Rinse before using. I gave my brisket a cold-water bath while preparing the other ingredients for a traditional New England boiled dinner.
  7. This recipe is only for curing the beef. When I cooked this cured beef, I simmered it for at least 3 hours, then moved it to a casserole with a cup of broth ladled over it and let it rest for 20-30 minutes before slicing across the grain.

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