Grandma Nancy's Cookbook

Instant Pot Jewish Brisket



75 minutes

total time


**BRISKET:4-5 lb Beef Brisket (I find that Costco has excellent cuts!), cut in half so it fits in your Instant Pot. Leave the fat on for now.

Kosher salt for rubbing into the brisket


3-4 yellow onions, chopped


1 1/2 cups of water

1 1/2 cups of ketchup

1 tsp crushed or minced garlic

3/4 cup of white vinegar

3/4 cup of dark brown sugar


2-3 tbsp cornstarch + 2-3 tbsp water to form a slurry


1. Take the brisket and cut it in half against the grain so it’s separated into two slices

2. Rub each side of the brisket with Kosher salt so it’s coated

3. Turn on the stove to high and in a large frying pan (or in your Instant Pot on “Sauté on the “More” or “High” setting – but the frying pan is easier for this due to size and even searing), let it get hot and then sear each side of the brisket until browned or slightly charred. About 2-4 minutes each side depending on your stove/pan. Just stand over it and check it to ensure you don’t overdo it too much. If you seared in your Instant Pot, remove the liner pot, rinse it clean, dry it and return it to the Instant Pot when done

4. With the trivet in the Instant Pot, layer one half of the brisket (fat-side up) and cover with about half of the onions. Then, in a criss-cross fashion, layer the other half of the brisket (also fat-side up) on top of onions and other half of the brisket. We are leaving it fat-side up so the juices from the fat course through the meat when cooking to make it super moist and flavorful

5. Make the sauce by combining the water, ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar and garlic

6. Cover with all of the sauce and then add the remaining onions to the top of the brisket and the sides of the pot if there’s room

7. Secure the lid and hit “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” High Pressure for 75 minutes if you want it SUPER tender (like shred apart, tender) or 65 minutes if you want it tender, but a little firmer

8. When done, do a 15-minute natural release followed by a quick release

9. Because they are going to be very tender, CAREFULLY transport the brisket halves to a carving board (again, fat-side up) and let them COOL for a solid 30 minutes. If you decide to carve it up into strips right away before it’s done cooling, it will shred apart – which is fine, but some people really like those long strips of brisket. What you CAN do now is easily shave off the undesired fat and discard (or keep it on if you like it)

10. Meanwhile, as the brisket’s cooling, make your cornstarch slurry and hit “Keep Warm/Cancel” and then hit “Sauté” and Adjust to the “High” or “More” setting and bring the sauce to a simmer. Add the slurry to the boiling sauce and stir it in good. Allow it to boil for 2 minutes and then turn the pot to the “Keep Warm” setting. The sauce will thicken up some as the brisket cools

11. Once the brisket is cooled down and easier to slice up, using a GOOD, sharp carving knife slice the brisket AGAINST the grain (meaning the opposite direction that the strings of meat are going in). Cut into strips or chunks. However you want it!

12. If the meat appears dry, don’t be fooled! We are going to take our sliced meat and carefully add it BACK to the Instant Pot and marinate in that delicious sauce for a few minutes (still on the “Keep Warm” setting). Let it sit in there for a good 5-10 minutes or so.

Place the brisket in a serving bowl and cover with the sauce. Enjoy!



75 minutes

total time
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