Go Back
+ servings
beef brisket served on a white plate with caramelized onions on arranged over the top

Nach Waxman’s Famous Beef Brisket

Course: Main
Cuisine: American
Keyword: BBQ, Comfort Food, Family Friendly, Game Day, Holiday, Make-Ahead, Southern Comfort Food, Tailgating
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours 10 minutes
Total Time: 4 hours 50 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 522kcal
Author: Marilyn
This famous beef brisket is a fusion of Mr. Waxman's mother's and mother-in-law's recipe. He is the founder of Manhattan’s Kitchen Arts & Letters a destination for chefs, cooks, historians, food writers and anyone else that loves to eat. His famous beef brisket recipe has an added step that magically makes the slices firmer and fabulously flavored.
Print Recipe



  • 6 pound brisket flat, trimmed so that a thin layer of fat remains
  • All-purpose flour optional
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter *
  • 8 medium onions peeled and thickly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 garlic cloves peeled and quartered
  • 1 carrot peeled and trimmed


  • Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  • Dust brisket all over with flour, if using. Season the brisket with pepper.
  • In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add the oil and heat until shimmering. Add the brisket to the Dutch oven and cook, turning halfway through cooking time, 10 to 14 minutes or until scattered crusty and browned areas appear on the brisket. Transfer the brisket to a platter.
  • Add the butter to the Dutch oven and cook until the butter is melted.* Add the onions and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Continue cooking and scraping up any browned bits stuck to the bottom of the pot, 10 to 15 minutes or until the onions have softened and developed a rich brown color but aren’t caramelized. Remove the pot from the heat. Place the brisket on the onions and pour any accumulated juices on the platter over the brisket.
  • Using a knife or a small spatula, spread the tomato paste over the brisket. Season the brisket with salt and pepper and then add the garlic and carrot to the pot. Cover the pot, transfer it to the oven, and cook, untouched, for 1-½ hours.
  • Transfer the brisket to a cutting board. Using a very sharp knife, thinly slice the brisket across the grain into approximately ⅛-inch-thick slices. Return the slices to the pot, overlapping them at an angle so that you can see a bit of the top edge of each slice. The end result should resemble the original unsliced brisket leaning slightly backward. If absolutely necessary, add 2 to 3 teaspoons water to the pot.
  • Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F. Cover the pot and cook, occasionally drizzling the meat with pan juices, about 2 hours or until the brisket is fork-tender. If the pan juices have evaporated, add up to a tablespoon of water and return to the oven.
  • When the brisket is fork-tender, remove it from the oven and let stand, covered, for 15 minutes.*
  • Arrange the brisket slices on a platter and spoon some of the pan juices over the brisket to barely moisten it.
  • Arrange the onions from the pan around the brisket. *


*  These ingredients and/or steps are small adaptations that I made to Nach Waxman's original recipe. You can skip them if you prefer to stick with Waxman's exact recipe.
You can use any large ovenproof enameled cast-iron pot or other heavy pot that has a lid. The brisket should fit snugly in the pan.
The flat cut of brisket is also called the first-cut. If the brisket is already trimmed or if you are trimming it, make sure your cut has a thin layer of fat.


Calories: 522kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 58g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 175mg | Sodium: 281mg | Potassium: 1100mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1164IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 6mg