Prime flat brisket vs. Packer choice brisket - brisket newbie



New member
So, I'm going to be smoking a brisket for the first time on my WSM. I am going to go to Costco to pick up my brisket and my choices are either a prime flat brisket or a choice whole packer - which would you get and why?

Also, I have only smoked one brisket before (new to this) and it was a flat... if I go with the whole brisket, what do I need to keep in mind (I saw a thread where someone said to cut off the point when the flat is done and put that back in the smoker while the flat rests... is that good? Anything else)?

ETA - I probably should have put this question in the new owners section.
Last edited:
Packer. A lot of Costco's are now selling prime packers. I am doing one for my mother in laws birthday in two weeks. I think they see at $2.99 a pound. Most economical and plenty of leftovers.
Packer. Cost/lb is better and don't separate. When you are ready to carve, separate the point from the flat. They should slide apart with very little effort, then slice both and enjoy.
I vote with the majority above. Packer is the way to go. Much cheaper in my area and love to make burnt ends with the point. Personally, I buy only packers for those reasons.
Ironically, the flat is cheaper per lb. at the Costco near me (at least at this moment) - No clue why! Thanks, everyone!
Just to update everyone - I ended up getting a Prime Whole Brisket for $3.49/lb!

There you go! Not a bad price for prime. I know some people in central Texas get to pay the same price as select or choice. Best price I can get is $3.99. Let us know how it turns out!
Costco had Prime whole packer for $2.99 (In Columbus OH) about 2 weeks ago. I should of jumped on it. Went back 4-5 days later to get one for this last weekend and price had jumped to $3.29. Still not bad. The Full packer (Prime) was $3.29, the flat (choice) was $6.29. Better grade and you get almost double the meat at the same price. no brainer
So, it came out pretty well, but not amazing. I cooked it with Oak for about 14 hours at 225 and put water in the pan. The part I had the temperature probe in read (in the flat) 165 when I foiled it. I took it up to 203 then put it in an insulated cambro for 2 hours... It came out tender, but a tiny bit dry. There was no smoke ring (and I read so many threads and did everything suggested to get that ring!!) and I probably would have liked a tiny bit more of a smoke flavor. It still came out well, but not knock-your-socks off. I was glad I got the packer because that probably helped prevent it being super dry.
Dry probably means it was a bit overdone. I've never cooked a packer more than about ten hours or so @ 250 degrees. Not sure why, but mine never take as long as others here seem to take. Temps verified with a (tested) Maverick.