Make Ahead

Mommy Elly's Brisket

April 22, 2010
1 Ratings
  • Serves 6-8
Author Notes

My mom, Ellyn, wasn't a very adventurous cook when we were growing up; however, there are a few dishes from my childhood that stand out and which I still cook today. She makes a yummy flank steak, marinated in some sort of ketchup concoction, and she makes awesome matzoh ball soup, the BEST according to my husband, and of course this brisket. Each of my mom, my maternal grandma, and my paternal grandma claim that this is their recipe; regardless of where the recipe originated, this is my perfect brisket recipe. Over the years, I have experimented with other more sophisticated brisket recipes that don't involve ketchup and lipton soup mix but they never live up to Mommy Elly's Brisket. About the pictures - the first one is of me and mom and the second one is my mom, dad, and two grandmas at my wedding. —melissav

What You'll Need
  • 2.5 pounds brisket
  • 1 package lipton onion soup mix
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 5 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 14 ounce can of tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 1 large onion, cut in large wedges
  • bunch of carrots, cut in large chunks
  • bunch of fingerling potatoes (me) or a can of white potatoes (mom)
  • mushrooms (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 325
  2. Rub the onion soup mix into the brisket. Place the brisket in a 13x9 pan
  3. Mix the brown sugar, ketchup, garlic cloves, tomato sauce, honey in a small bowl and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Pour the ketchup mixture over the brisket and cover the pan tightly with foil.
  5. Roast for about 3 hours until it is tender when you poke it with a fork.
  6. Remove from oven and slice against the grain. Return to pan.
  7. If you make this the day ahead (which my mom and grandmas typically do), refrigerate overnight. The next day, continue with Step 8 after you let the brisket come to room temperature.
  8. If you are not making this ahead, add the onions, carrots, potatoes, and mushrooms and cover tightly again.
  9. Return to the oven for 45 minutes - 1 hour until really tender and the veggies are cooked through.
  10. Enjoy with family and friends!
  11. PS - I have started serving this with a horseradish cream sauce (mix horseradish to taste with creme fraiche and a handful of minced chives and salt and pepper to test) and I recommend you do the same!

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • drbabs
  • MaSaBeMama
  • monkeymom
  • Aliwaks
  • melissav

17 Reviews

Sf2oak September 10, 2012
I tried Lipton onion soup base on brisket 1x and I won't fall for that ridiculous sham perpetrated on the American palates ever again. There are infinitely better spices to put on a delicious cut of meat, that is not one of them. Don't say you weren't warned! if & mom what are canned potatoes, eee gads, run from this salt/sugar bomb of a "recipe."
jnmeiman September 19, 2011
do you refrigerate it after you slice it? my grandma said it will fall apart if you do...
drbabs February 27, 2011
Hi Melissa. I am making this right now. I made a few minor changes. I didn't have tomato sauce so I used a can of fire roasted tomatoes. I thought the sauce was a little sweet, so I didn't add the honey. I did add some onion powder and Worcestershire sauce, making the sauce a little like the dead guy sauce that won the condiment contest. It is so good! It does feel really obnoxious to use onion soup mix and ketchup, but there's something about the combination that creates a sublime sauce. Thanks so much for posting this recipe.
melissav February 27, 2011
Hi Dr. B - My mom will be thrilled to hear that you made her recipe. I like your additions. I am going to try them next time.
MaSaBeMama September 10, 2010
made this yesterday in place of my go-to recipe & it was AWESOME! Thanks so much for sharing!
lacerise June 14, 2010
this is what my mom made, too, and I'm probably from your mother's generation. i love it, but have to say that i've found other brisket recipes that i really enjoy, i.e. ruth reichl's from the Gourmet cookbook and jacques pepin's pot roast recipe made with a brisket.
claskey June 14, 2010
mmm this is MY favorite dish at our famous thanksgiving dinners every year. i'm so glad you posted it so i can learn how to cook it one day. :)
monkeymom April 24, 2010
Great pictures!
melissav April 24, 2010
Thank you!
Aliwaks April 23, 2010
My Nanny Matties is almost exactly like this! I think she added a can (!) or mushrooms.
melissav April 24, 2010
I'm still trying to get my mom to use fresh potatoes instead of the canned whole potatoes. Haven't won that battle yet! At least she uses fresh carrots instead of canned. . . that's a start!
melissav April 23, 2010
It is so great hearing everyone's stories and memories about this dish. Whenever we would go to someone else's house for the jewish holidays, there was always a brisket dish similar to this recipe but just "not quite" the same! I think the variations between the recipes are minimal but none is better than the one YOUR mom makes!
testkitchenette April 23, 2010
My mom's made brisket for as long as I can remember but like MrsWheelbarrow, used chili sauce and white vinegar but no soup mix. She used one of two recipes, my father's mother's and one from the community nursery school cookbook my brother and sister went to. I am loving all of these stories of memories of our mom's etc!
MrsWheelbarrow April 23, 2010
My mother's recipe is nearly identical, except she added Heinz Chili Sauce, not ketchup. I thought she might have gotten the recipe when we took our (annual) school field trip to the Heinz factory in Pittsburgh. Any other 'burgher's out there remember those tours and the tiny pickle pin?
Lizthechef April 23, 2010
My mother always used Heinz Chili sauce too! Amazingly, I had one of those pins as a kid...
drbabs April 23, 2010
My mother's recipe is very similar. It must have been on a package of Lipton's onion soup mix at one time!
dymnyno April 22, 2010
Oh what mother made this recipe too!!!