They’re small mini pillows of the most incredibly rich beefy flavour and soft gelatinous seams. If you like barbecue brisket, you’re going to love the smoked AngusPure beef cheeks.
Often used in braises, stews, and the classic taco filling Barbacoa, beef cheeks are a definite low’n’slow cut, requiring a good long cook over a low heat. Sound familiar? Yup, that’s exactly the same premise as a brisket. And much like a brisket, they require proper trimming, you can only find two per steer, and they are pretty much built for smoking.
Hearing ‘cheeks’ grosses some people out, because the concept of eating meat from the head is confronting for many people. Many folks assume cheeks are some weird piece of offal, but they are most definitely muscle – just like any cut of steak from anywhere else on the steer.
Here’s all you need to know to perfectly smoke AngusPure beef cheeks:
Start with a well trimmed cheek muscle.
Rub generously with a simple blend of coarse black pepper and kosher salt. I use 2 parts pepper to 1 part salt.
Place the well-seasoned AngusPure cheeks in a smoker at 275F / 135C, and cook for approximately 5 hours until you reach an internal temperature of 210F / 99C.
At this temperature, they can be either pulled or sliced.
And that, my friends, is all there is to it! So although the cooking process really couldn’t be more simple, the taste of the finished product is anything but.
Recipe by Jess Pryles
Jess Pryles is the AngusPure ambassador and a full fledged Hardcore Carnivore. She’s a cook, writer, and TV personality specialising in red meat, with penchant for grilling and bourbon. She's also a respected authority on Texas & competition style barbecue. Born in Australia, she now resides in Austin, Texas.