Veal brisket is a wonderful variation for all the brisket lovers out there. This recipe braises the veal until incredibly tender and practically falling apart.
Cooked with tomatoes, carrots, celery, onion, garlic, lemon and fresh herbs there’s plenty of hearty flavor to accompany the meat which can be used in pasta, meal-prep bowls or anything else you can dream up.
Last year I found this amazing local pig farm and went a bit nuts at the farmer’s hole in the wall freezer room buying everything I could with the cash I had on me.
Funny enough, I think I ended up with more veal that day than pork.
He raises cows and chickens in addition to the pigs and having not had veal in years because it’s impossible to source to my standards in a grocery store, I got a bit overexcited when I saw it.
That’s the story of how this veal brisket ended up in my freezer and a few months later on my plate after braising it to tender perfection.
I realize veal brisket is not a cut of meat many will find themselves cooking but, this is my attempt to put at least one decent recipe out into the internet for it.
Because after searching myself when I decided to defrost this and cook it up, I can tell you from first hand experience there’s not much out there.
WHAT IS VEAL BRISKET?
Veal brisket is also known as veal pot roast.
It’s the boned veal breast and just like “regular” beef brisket (from a full grown cow), it follows the same set of parameters of having two different cuts: a flat cut and point cut.
I go over all these details about brisket in this Instant Pot brisket recipe if you want more information.
Obviously, because veal is from a calf, veal brisket is generally smaller in size than beef brisket weighing on average, about 3 pounds.
Flavor wise, the taste of veal brisket is a little more delicate than beef.
It still has plenty of flavor but without that heavy heartiness of beef. It’s also quite a bit leaner.
INGREDIENTS TO MAKE TENDER BRAISED VEAL BRISKET
There are a few flavor directions you can take a simple braised meat like this but I chose to go with the classics.
Carrots, celery, onion, fresh herbs, garlic and some lemon zest infuse traditional “Sunday pot roast” type of flavor into the brisket and the result is pure hearty comfort food.
- veal brisket
- salt and pepper
- avocado oil
- lemon zest
- red wine
- crushed tomatoes
- fresh herbs (I used rosemary and oregano)
- bay leaf
If you prefer not to cook with alcohol the red wine can be swapped out for broth or water.
HOW TO COOK VEAL BRISKET
I love braising for its simplistic, relatively hands off approach and just like this braised leg of lamb, that’s exactly the case with this recipe.
There are two parts – first a simple sear of the brisket then a low and slow braise in the oven. While the total cooking time is 3 hours, the active time on your part is under 30 minutes.
Start by preheating the oven to 325°F.
Heat the avocado oil in a large Dutch oven or heavy bottomed pot over high heat.
Season the brisket with salt and pepper then place into the pot once the oil is hot and sear until browned on both sides.
Turn off the heat and add the remaining ingredients to the pot. Give everything a quick stir to combine then place the lid on the pot and transfer it to the oven.
Cook the veal for 2.5-3 hours in the oven, flipping the brisket half way through.
By the end the meat should be tender and pull apart easily.
Remove the brisket with tongs to a cutting board and either slice or shred with two large forks. Transfer the meat back into the pot to soak up the braising liquid.
Serve as desired from the pot.
HOW LONG SHOULD I COOK VEAL BRISKET?
That said, veal brisket doesn’t need as long of a cooking time as beef brisket both because it’s a smaller cut of meat and because it’s leaner.
For this 3 pound veal brisket, I found the sweet spot to tender, fall apart meat to be about 2.5-3 hours. This will depend on the size of your brisket though and your oven.
Ovens can run hot or cool so knowing your particular oven is important. Start checking the brisket doneness around the 2 hour mark by trying to pull the meat apart with two forks.
If it does so easily, you can consider it done and take it out of the oven sooner. If not, continue cooking until that tender fall-apart texture is achieved.
HOW TO SERVE VEAL BRISKET
A 3-pound brisket can yield up to 8 servings so there are a few ways you can enjoy this recipe and its leftovers.
The day of cooking, when the brisket is hot out of the oven we typically enjoy it as either a roast type of meal (like this venison roast) or, like a ragu or bolognese.
Once we’re in leftover territory, I like to shred the remaining veal brisket and use it for easy lunches.
The leftovers are great for meal-prep and can be served simply alongside rice or another starch and a vegetable of your choice.
MORE RECIPES TO TRY LIKE THIS:
Braised Veal Brisket
- 2.5-3 pound veal brisket
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil
- 2 carrots chopped
- 2 stalks of celery chopped
- 1 yellow onion chopped
- 5 cloves garlic peeled and crushed
- 1/2 cup red wine optional or sub broth/water
- 14 ounces canned crushed tomatoes
- zest of 1 lemon
- 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 2 sprigs fresh oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 325°F.
- Add oil to a Dutch oven or heavy bottomed large pot over high heat. Season the brisket generously with salt and pepper on both sides. Once hot, place the brisket in the pot and sear until browned on both sides.
- Place the remaining ingredients into the pot with the veal and stir to combine.
- Cover with a lid and transfer the pot to the oven.
- Cook for 3 hours, flipping the brisket half way through. Meat should be tender and shred easily when done.
- Remove the brisket to a cutting board and either slice or shred using two forks. Return the meat to the braising sauce/liquid in the pot and serve as desired.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.
Gina Matsoukas is the writer, founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients as much as possible. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.