The Best Brisket Rub Recipe

Simple to assemble but potent! This recipe is for the best brisket rub, and it works like a charm. The different chili powders and dark cocoa powder add a nice earthy depth and bring out the beef’s natural flavors. I recommend doubling the recipe and storing it for future cooking. This brisket rub recipe makes enough for one full-packer brisket.

Brisket Rub Basics:

The key to a good brisket starts with the rub. Luckily, the best brisket rub recipe will get you there. What is so fantastic about this rub? Well, this recipe contains the perfect balance of salt, heat, and nice earthy depth. You can apply the seasonings right before placing the brisket on the smoker or apply it ahead of time. If you plan to do the latter, wrap the brisket and place it into your refrigerator for 4-6 hours. Once you’ve made the rub, I transfer it to a large metal shaker and apply the seasonings.

The Best Brisket Rub Recipe Ingredients:

  • Ancho chili powder: substitute with pasilla chili powder or use regular chili powder
  • Chili powder: the American variety 
  • Black pepper
  • Granulated garlic: sub with garlic powder
  • Cayenne
  • Unsweetened dark cocoa powder
  • Oregano (optional)
  • Kosher or Argentinian salt
Brisket Rub Recipe

How to Make it:

This rub is so easy to put together! All you’ll need to do is add all of the required ingredients to a bowl and use a fork to combine. Please give it a quick taste and adjust to your liking.

Oregano: You do not need to add oregano to this brisket rub recipe. It’s purely optional. However, it adds an herbal note to the finished product. If you can find Mexican oregano at your local grocery store, I recommend using it in this rub.

Cayenne: This recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of cayenne pepper. If this seems too spicy, reduce the amount of cayenne to 1 teaspoon. Then, 2 teaspoons of regular paprika in addition. 

Storing the Rub:

Make up a big batch of the best brisket rub recipe, store it in an airtight container, and keep it in a cupboard for up to 1 year.

Photos by Israel Albornoz on Unsplash

BGDR's Best Brisket Rub

The Best Brisket Rub

A simple but potent brisket rub that works like a charm. The different chili powders and dark cocoa powder add a nice earthy depth, and will bring out the natural flavors of the beef. Double the recipe and store for future cooks. This recipe is enough for one large brisket.
Photo by Israel Albornoz on Unsplash
4.5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Rubs
Cuisine: American BBQ, Fusion
Keyword: bbq brisket rub, best brisket rub, brisket rub
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 24kcal


  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons ancho chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons granulated garlic
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne
  • 2 teaspoons unsweetened dark cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon oregano


  • Combine rub ingredients in a small bowl and use immediately on brisket.
  • Double or triple recipe and store rub in an airtight container in the cupboard for up to one year after preparation.
  • Take out what you need. Discard any leftover rub that has come into contact with raw meat.
  • This seasoning can be used on other cuts of beef like roasts, steaks, and ribs.
  • Do keep in mind that this rub is on the spicier side, so adjust the ingredients to suit your needs. Substitute with regular paprika or increase the amount of mild chili powder if reducing the cayenne or ancho.
  • Substitute unsweetened cocoa powder with instant coffee if needed.


Calories: 24kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 2684mg | Potassium: 138mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 1459IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 1mg

Confused about Brisket? See my Brisket Buying Guide for more information.

The Best Brisket Rub Recipe

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