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Slow-Cooker Brisket with Pomegranate, Red Wine, and Caramelized Onions

Andrew Hugh Purcell

Servings: 6

Pomegranate molasses and seeds add seasonal flair and a fresh, sweet-tart taste to this brisket, ideal for the Jewish holidays and other special occasions. Prepare this dish a day or two in advance to allow the flavors to meld and the meat to become more tender and flavorful.

This recipe is excerpted from Year-Round Slow Cooker.


  • 1⁄4 cup plus 2 Tbs. pomegranate molasses
  • 2 Tbs. Dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbs. minced garlic
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 8 grinds black pepper
  • 1 3-lb. beef brisket
  • 3 Tbs. vegetable oil
  • 2 medium red onions, halved and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 3 Tbs. tomato paste
  • 3 Tbs. all-purpose flour
  • 1⁄2 cup red wine, such as Zinfandel
  • 1 14-oz. can whole peeled tomatoes, with juices
  • 1⁄2 cup low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1⁄4 cup fresh-squeezed, strained orange juice
  • 2 Tbs. honey
  • 3⁄4 cup pomegranate seeds, at room temperature, for garnish


  • Put 1⁄4 cup of the pomegranate molasses, the mustard, garlic, coriander, salt, and pepper in the slow cooker and use a wooden spoon to mix well. Add the meat and turn to coat with the mixture (use your fingers to smear the mixture all over the meat).
  • Heat 2 Tbs. of the oil in a 10-inch, heavy sauté pan over medium heat. When hot, add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, limp, and sweet, about 20 minutes (discard any strips of red onion skin that separate from the flesh). Pour the onions on top of the meat.
  • Add the remaining tablespoon of oil, plus the tomato paste and flour to the pan. Stir until no white flour is visible, about 1 minute. Remove the pan from the heat and carefully add the wine; return the pan to the heat, raise the heat to high, and simmer for about 2 minutes, whisking into a smooth, thick sauce. Add the remaining 2 Tbs. pomegranate molasses, the tomatoes with juices, stock, orange juice, and honey, and use a potato masher to gently mash the tomatoes. Boil until smooth and relatively thick, about 4 minutes, then pour over the meat-onion mixture.
  • Cover and cook on low until tender, about 8 hours. Carefully transfer the meat to a cutting board, and let rest for about 10 minutes. With a large shallow spoon or ladle, skim the fat off the top of the cooking juices. Cut the meat against the grain into roughly 1⁄3-inch-thick slices, mix it back into the sauce, and serve, garnished with the pomegranate seeds.


To adapt a slow-cooker recipe to a conventional oven, follow these guidelines: add more liquid, to accommodate for greater evaporation; bring the dish to a boil over high heat in a Dutch oven, then cover the pot and put in a 350°F oven. Plan on the dish taking roughly half the time to cook in the oven as it would in the slow cooker.


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Reviews (6 reviews)

  • User avater
    PamDTodd | 11/05/2018

    Very yummy

  • Ahieta | 01/30/2017

    This recipe is a 3 at best. There are a lot of steps involved and in the end, it's ok. The reason I gave it a 1 is because a few other people rated it a 5 TO ASK A QUESTION! THEY DIDN'T EVEN MAKE IT. I am hoping my 1 will be the start to a more realistic rating of this recipe.

  • Krispie | 12/22/2014

    This was not one of my favorite fine cooking recipes. The sauce and even the meat was a little sour. I'm not certain if I made a mistake along the way or if the recipe was intended to be a little sour. While it was quite easy to make, I would probably pass on making it again.

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