When people say “Texas-style”

hey say everything’s bigger in Texas and barbecue is no exception. Barbecue tradition runs deep in the Lone Star State, but it’s only been in the past decade that the region’s signature style has stolen the national smoked meat spotlight from the pork-minded pitmasters of Tennessee and the Carolinas. It’s hard to understand what makes the state’s barbecue unique if you haven’t spent time in Central Texas, so here’s everything you need to know to eat barbecue like a true Texan.

When people say “Texas-style,” they mean “Central Texas-style”

South Texas focuses on barbacoa, East Texas serves chopped beef, and West Texas cooks over direct heat in a style more akin to grilling. The food varies depending on where you are in the state, but when people use the term “Texas barbecue” it almost always translates the Central Texas-style of cooking brisket low and slow over indirect heat. Since you’ll rarely see the others unless you’re road-tripping to remote corners of the state, most of this article concerns the style associated with Central Texas.

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Beef is the main course

The first thing that makes Texas the iconoclast of the ‘cueing world is a worship of beef over pork. The preference dates back to the cattle industry, but culturally you can chalk it up to bigger-in-Texas palates. Argue all you like about proteins, but it’s tough to convince a Texan that the other white meat packs more flavor than a well-cooked piece of beef.

The two types of brisket are moist and lean

A brisket has two distinct portions, the leaner “flat” and the fattier “point.” Some menus list both types, but even those that don’t will happily cut from whichever side of the brisket a customer prefers. Fatty (aka “moist”) is more popular and loaded with flavor. The lower fat content of the lean side makes it harder to cook perfectly, but it’s by no means a second class barbecue citizen — it’s still served with a sliver of fat cap.

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No combo plate is complete without brisket

Pork ribs, sausage, turkey, beef ribs, and pulled pork typically round out a menu, but no plate of Texas barbecue is complete without brisket. The collagen-packed chest muscle is king and how it’s cooked is considered the true measure of a pitmaster’s skill. If Texas had a list of barbecue commandments, Thou Shalt Order Brisket would be No. 1.

White bread, onions, and pickles are free

Condiment stations are always loaded with quartered white onions, pickles, and cheap white bread. There might occasionally be a charge for more premium bread or fancy pickles, but the standards should definitely come for free.

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Wood is favored over charcoal or gas

Smokers with a gas assist function have gained popularity in higher volume restaurants, but most masters still do it the old-fashioned way: a hardwood fire that’s watched carefully overnight. The most common wood used in Central Texas is post oak, but you’ll also see mesquite and hickory.

The fires burn low and slow

One of the hardest parts of barbecuing is the meticulous management of a fire. If you cook too hot and fast, the collagen won’t have time to render and the inherent toughness of the cut of meat will prevail. Pitmasters subscribe to a low and slow philosophy that can take up to 20 hours for each brisket.

Many of the most legitimate barbecue operations happen outdoors

Based on regulations on indoor smokers, spatial considerations, and the low startup cost of trailers, cooking is often done outside. This further complicates the fragile ecosystem inside the smoker and tests a pitmaster’s abilities.

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The rubs aren’t loaded with secret spices

One of the primary distinctions of Central Texas BBQ is simplicity. Many pitmasters will sneak in a hint of garlic powder or cayenne, but the traditional rub for a brisket is a fistful of salt and black pepper to amplify the flavor without complicating it.

There’s usually a wait

Good things come to those who stand outside a Texas barbecue joint for two hours. The best barbecue restaurants in Texas are so popular that lines can exceed four hours on busy weekends. This practice of waiting has been so ingrained in the experience that the lines of famous spots like Franklin Barbecue develop their own micro-economies. People rent out chairs and even sell their place in line (a practice that Franklin has now banned). Luckily in many of those lines you won’t be thirsty, because…

“Father’s Day is a time to spend with family”

(DALLAS) The results are in: Dads want barbecue for their special day. Dickey’s Barbecue Pit continually experiences an increase in sales over Father’s Day weekend, showing that the authentic barbecue is near and dear to Dad’s heart. For instance, sales of Dickey’s fall-off-the-bone, St. Louis-Style Ribs increase 20 percent, equaling 10,000 racks of ribs sold this weekend.  Read More

Double Up at Dickey’s with Slow-Smoked Barbecue for Two

Dickey’s Barbecue Pit offers guests the perfect lunch or dinner option for two with 2 two meat plates for only $22 at participating locations.

During February and March, guests can dine-in or carry out Dickey’s famous two meat plates for a delicious deal. Dickey’s two meat plate includes the guests’ choice of two meats, two sides and a buttery roll.  Read More

Dickey’s Asks Guests to Share Love Story on Social Media

Vieiw the full article here .

This February, Dickey’s Barbecue Pit asks guests to share the story of how they met their significant other on social media to win a year of free barbecue for them and their significant other.

“At Dickey’s, we believe our barbecue brings folks together and we want to share that with our guests,” says Laura Rea Dickey, CEO of Dickey’s Barbecue Restaurants, Inc. “After 77 years of being barbecue experts, we know that sharing our authentic barbecue with our loved ones is what is most important.”

From February 1 to 28, guests can post a photo of them and their significant other on Facebook or Instagram, share the story of how they met and use hashtag #HowDidYouMeatContest. To be entered, guests must also follow Dickey’s on whichever platform they posted their #HowDidYouMeatContest entry.

The winner will be randomly selected on March 1 and will be sent their free barbecue for a year vouchers for the location of their choosing.


The Dickey Foundation – Since 1941, Dickey’s Barbecue Pit

The Dickey Foundation

Since 1941, Dickey’s Barbecue Pit has taken great pride in our Texas-style barbecue and our commitment to the communities we serve. It is in that spirit, that The Dickey Foundation was created. The Dickey Foundation supports first responders who protect and unite our communities. Our Foundation is national, but our efforts are intensely local, focusing on financial support, public education, and providing the equipment necessary for the safety of our first responders.

Read More