How much does a 10 lb brisket feed?

A 10 lb brisket can feed anywhere from 10 to 20 people, depending on how you slice it and what sides you serve. Here’s a quick rundown of how many a 10 lb brisket will feed:

If sliced thickly (1/2 inch slices):

  • A 10 lb brisket will yield around 15-20 servings if sliced into 1/2 inch thick slices.
  • Plan for around 1/2 lb of meat per person if serving just brisket.
  • This will feed 10-15 people if brisket is the main course.

If sliced thinly (1/4 inch slices):

  • A 10 lb brisket will yield 30-40 servings if sliced very thinly.
  • Plan for 2-3 oz of meat per person if serving just brisket.
  • This will feed 15-20 people if brisket is the main course.

With sides:

  • If serving brisket with 2-3 hearty side dishes, plan for 3-4 oz of brisket per person.
  • A 10 lb brisket will feed 20-30 people if served with salad, bread, sides, etc.

As an appetizer:

  • If serving sliced brisket as an appetizer, plan for 2 oz per person.
  • A 10 lb brisket will yield around 60 appetizer servings.
  • It will feed 30-40 people if served as a hearty appetizer along with other apps.

In summary:

Serving Style Serving Size Number Served
Thick slices only 1/2 lb per person 10-15 people
Thin slices only 2-3 oz per person 15-20 people
With 2-3 sides 3-4 oz per person 20-30 people
As an appetizer 2 oz per person 30-40 people

What affects how far a brisket will feed?

There are a few factors that affect how far a 10 lb brisket will go:

  • Slice thickness – Thin slices stretch farther than thick slices.
  • Serving style – Brisket served as a main entree with sides will feed less than brisket served as appetizers.
  • Side dishes – More hearty side dishes like mac and cheese reduce the amount of brisket needed per person.
  • Appetites – Bigger eaters may need more meat than dainty eaters.

Typically figure 1/2 lb of meat per average appetite if serving thick slices of brisket as a main course without substantial sides. But slice it thinly and accompany with salads, sides, and bread, and a 10 lb brisket could serve upwards of 30 people.

How to slice a brisket for serving:

Here are some tips on slicing a brisket to optimize how far it will feed a group:

  • Slice across the grain of the meat, diagonally to the muscle fibers. This makes it more tender.
  • Use a long, very sharp carving knife to neatly slice the brisket.
  • For thick slices, cut 1/2-inch thick slices.
  • For thin slices, cut 1/4-inch or thinner slices.
  • Aim for consistent slice thickness for even cooking and attractive presentation.

Start by slicing the fattier point end of the brisket first, then move on to the leaner flat.

Serving a 10 lb brisket as a main course:

If serving brisket as the star of the main course, here are some tips:

  • Allow 1/2 lb or more per average eater if not serving sides.
  • Offer 2-3 hearty side dishes like baked beans, coleslaw, mac and cheese or potato salad.
  • Provide rolls or bread to round out the meal.
  • Offer a simple green salad to lighten the meal.
  • Have additional sauces on hand – like barbecue sauce or gravy – to moisten the brisket.
  • Leftovers will keep in the fridge for 4-5 days or freezer for 4-6 months.

With 2-3 hearty sides, a 10 lb brisket should comfortably feed 15-20 as a main course.

Serving brisket as an appetizer:

To serve brisket as part of a spread of appetizers:

  • Slice the brisket as thinly as possible.
  • Cut into small, bite-sized pieces or strips.
  • Plan for around 2 oz of brisket per person.
  • Offer barbecue sauce, mustard, pickles and bread on the side.
  • Accompany with lighter apps like deviled eggs, cheese straws, smoked salmon.
  • A 10 lb brisket should provide appetizers for 30-40 as part of a larger spread.

Sample menu to serve 20 with a 10 lb brisket:

Here is a sample menu for serving 20 people using a 10 lb brisket as the main course:

Main Course:

  • Sliced Brisket with Barbecue Sauce
  • Baked Beans
  • Coleslaw
  • Cornbread


  • Tossed Green Salad
  • Potato Salad
  • Corn on the Cob
  • Dinner Rolls with Butter


  • Iced Tea
  • Lemonade
  • Beer
  • Soft Drinks

To stretch the brisket, accompany it with hearty sides dishes. Offer lighter sides like salad and cornbread to balance the meal. Have rolls on hand to round out the plate and give brisket slices a landing spot on the plate.

With this type of menu, a 10 lb brisket should comfortably feed 20 people along with sides, salad and bread.

Leftovers and storing brisket:

Brisket leftovers can be safely stored:

  • Fridge: Store sliced brisket in an airtight container for 3-5 days.
  • Freezer: Freeze leftover brisket for 4-6 months. Seal slices in freezer bags or airtight containers.
  • Reheating: Reheat brisket slices in the oven, microwave, or skillet until heated through.

Slicing the brisket while still warm makes it easier to cut. Refrigerating overnight firms it up to allow thin slicing.

Brisket also makes delicious sandwiches the next day. Stack slices on bread with barbecue sauce for an easy leftover meal.

Pricing out a 10 lb brisket:

On average, a 10 lb untrimmed, untrimmed brisket costs:

  • Raw price: $50 – $75
  • Cooked price: $150 – $200

So raw brisket costs $5-7 per lb and cooked barbecued brisket costs $15-20 per lb on average.

A 10 lb brisket serves 15-20 people. So the per person cost is:

  • Raw brisket: $3-$5 per person
  • Cooked brisket: $10-$15 per person

Factoring in sides and accompaniments, plan on a total cost of $15-25 per person if serving brisket as the main course for a group.

Buying brisket for a group:

When buying brisket for a crowd, keep these tips in mind:

  • Allow 1/2 lb of raw brisket per person, minimum.
  • For appetizers, figure 2 oz of cooked, sliced brisket per person.
  • Choose USDA Choice grade brisket preferably with some marbling.
  • Trim excess hard fat but leave a 1/4 inch fat cap for moistness.
  • Allow 12-14 hours for low, slow smoking at 225-250F.
  • Rest the brisket for 1-2 hours before thinly slicing across the grain.
  • Plan for generous leftovers since brisket makes great sandwiches.

With sides, buns, sauce and leftovers, a 10 lb brisket is perfect for serving 15-20 people when hosting a crowd.


A whole 10 lb brisket will provide delicious smoked meat for a party of 10-20 guests. Thinly slice and accompany with hearty sides, salad, and bread to stretch the meat. Allow 1/2 lb raw or 2-3 oz cooked per person as a guideline. Resting, and slicing properly improves presentation. Brisket makes fabulous leftovers, so don’t be afraid to have extra. A brisket in the 10 lb range can reliably feed groups of 15-20 when served buffet style with ample sides. With a range of Southern-style sides, buns, and sauce, a 10 lb brisket can provide a wonderful centerpiece for a backyard barbecue.

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