For me, vegetables are a work of art. I spend a lot of time and attention cooking them.

My meat and chicken recipes, however, tend to be very simple. Brisket is something that I make usually for holidays and other special occasions.

My friend Francis however, asked if I had a recipe for brisket without sugar or alcohol, so I thought I would post it here now.

For slightly different reasons, my sister and I both do not like to cook with wine. My sister, Raizel (both she and my daughter are named after the same person) says that wine has too strong a flavor, especially if something is cooked for a long time.  She only likes to add wine, if necessary, near the end of cooking.

I find that wine gives a slightly sour taste and the food doesn’t last as long.  Plus, I call the juice from cooking, “liquid gold” and I like to use it again, to give a richer flavor to other dishes. When wine is added, I find that I can’t do that.

Francis was concerned that without wine, the meat would be too tough. Although I am not a meat connoisseur, with a pressure cooker, I do not find this to be the case. My husband, who is a bona fide  carnivore also loves brisket best cooked in the pressure cooker.

Sorry, no picture is available. If and when I make it again, I will add it later.


2-3 lbs. brisket, second cut is best

2-3 onions, sliced

2-3 carrots, cut on diagonal

2 stalks of celery, sliced

2 parsnips cut on diagonal

Optional 3-4 potatoes, cut in quarters

Meat spice blend: salt, pepper, garlic, oregano, paprika and mustard if desired

salt, pepper and paprika to taste

2 bay leaves

2 cloves of garlic, crushed near the end

1 cup, or more water or broth depending on cooking method


Sprinkle spices on the meat before cooking.

Sauté onions and vegetables. Add meat, bay leaves, potatoes (if using) and liquid.

My sister recommends sautéing the onions, and placing the meat on top and reserving some of the onions for the top of the meat.

Brisket is a versatile meat, that can be cooked in the pressure cooker, crockpot, stove top or oven.  A definite time saver!

I like brisket best when cooked in the pressure cooker, and cook it for 30-35 minutes to pressure. If using the pressure cooker, unless I am in a rush, I do not add the potatoes. If I really want potatoes, I cook the meat for 25 minutes, break the pressure and then bring to pressure again for 7-10 more minutes (depends on the size of the potatoes) to complete the cooking.

Another alternative is to add potatoes, and let the meat simmer until done. If not, the potatoes become over cooked and too soft. Potatoes, however, add a richness to the broth.

Stove top: bring to a boil and then simmer until done.

Oven: bake in covered pan at 350*F for 1-11/2 hours.

Crockpot: If desired, sauté onions and other vegetables and place in crockpot. Put meat, spices inside and pour broth/water over the top.  Reserve some of the onions and place on top of meat, for added flavor.

Once cooked, adjust seasonings, usually with just salt, pepper and paprika and add fresh garlic.


5 thoughts on “Brisket 

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