When is beef chuck or brisket fully cooked?

How do I know when a beef chuck roast is done when the recommended cooking time is 24 to 36 hours @ 155F or a beef brisket when the recommended cooking time is 36 to 72 hours at 135°F?

How do I check for doneness?


It’s a guess really. Here’s the thing, the meat is cooked, it’s totally safe to eat. It’s been “USDA done” and safe to eat for many hours, like 20+ hours. It just might or might not be to the texture you desire. The only way you will find that out is to experiment,

Pull the meat at X hours, keep an idea in the back of your head as to the grade and thickness, then see how you like it. Adjust the next cook up or down in time and/or temp.

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Preferences are completely personal and each piece of meat varies, so it’s quite impossible to say that you’ll get the best finish at N hours.

What acs says is true, the only sure way is to open it up and taste it. But of course, this means that you’d need to repack it and return it to the bath if it’s not done to your liking.

It’s also worth giving a pinch test to help you learn how to judge for future cooks. As you pinch it, try to remember the feel and spring that it gives you. Also observe the way the muscle fibres are reacting to the pressure. If they’re opening up and being pushed away from each other, you’ve got your meat well into ‘pullable’ stage.

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Ember and ACS, thank you so much for your replies. As a newbie who hasn’t even gotten my Anova wet yet I’m asking a lot of questions as there is a lot that is not obvious.

Upon further investigation it turns out the time periods for larger chunks of meat are sort of a maximum and minimum boundary. Part of my original frustration was that I had anticipated using my Foodsaver vacuum sealing machine for use with the Anova and couldn’t figure out how to test the meat without puncturing the bag, but perhaps I should simply use Ziplock bags.

I found a site that made the time period question a little clearer - http://www.amazingfoodmadeeasy.com/info/modernist-cooking-blog/more/sous-vide-times-explained - I haven’t really progressed past that point because I noticed your responces and wanted to let you know I appreciate your interest in helping me.

Thank you so much for your time and effort in helping me to enjoy a food experience I am very much looking forward to. Hopefully I will be able to help others as you have helped me.

Best regards,

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It is often better to ask questions that will cut down on your need to experiment. Often for the newer cooks it is best to start off with meats that are tender and the cooking time short. I always like pork tenderloin and chicken breast. Salmon is also quick and easy and turns out great every time.

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