It is Sketti Time! Noodles and BBQ, a heavenly hybrid. I wish I could proclaim this genius was my creation. Inception came from a food show highlighting some of the menu items at Neely’s BBQ in Memphis. The BBQ Spaghetti had me floored in stunned amazement. Immediately, I knew I had to do my own rendition of this dish.
We had left-overs from preparing a smoked beef brisket. There was no contest as to what the left-over brisket’s fate would become – smoked beef brisket BBQ spaghetti. This remarkable dish is so straight-forward (once you have the brisket handy) and utterly loaded with American flavors that make you proud to be an American. I took a different route by using smoked beef brisket. Most recipes will use pulled pork. In my opinion, the beef brisket is the real man’s choice. The succulent cubes of beef provide more meaty texture to the chewy spaghetti noodles and the smokey beef fat really makes its way through the nooks and crannies of the noodles. But the real kicker are the toppings. BBQ sauce with smoked beef brisket and spaghetti is already a winning combination. But the inclusions of shredded cheddar cheese and scallions make this dish legend.
I suggest you cut a couple of corners to expedite this recipe. Rather than laboring over making a homemade BBQ sauce, which in itself is not challenging but is just another step, I recommend you go purchase a couple of your favorite, artsinal BBQ sauces. None of this Kraft or other big brand goop that you buy at your local mega grocery store. I’m talking about some real, crafted BBQ sauces. And I’d say you should grab more than one. I like mixing different kinds of BBQ sauces – like one hot and one sweet, or one maple and another bourbon – to concoct a truly unique creation. I went with Stubb’s Spicy BBQ sauce and Balducci’s Virginia Bourbon (got to represent yall).
If you need an easy recipe to make your own smoked beef brisket, check out this one here from Peck the Beak. Make sure to include some of the fatty pieces of the brisket and of course, some of the char/bark to really step up the unctuousness, fatty texture, and BBQ smoke flavors.
BBQ Spaghetti Recipe
- 2 cups smoked beef brisket, cubed (and include some bark/char and fat)
- 2 lbs spaghetti
- 2-4 cups of hand-crafted, non-commercially made BBQ sauces – I suggest mixing 2-3 different types of BBQ sauces together to configure your own special blend (preferably one spicy BBQ sauce and one sweet BBQ sauce mixed together)
- 6 cloves of garlic, sliced
- 2 handfuls of shredded sharp cheddar
- 1/2 cup of diced scallions
- Olive oil
This recipe should take no more than 20 minutes and is mainly an hommage to assembly.
Have a big pot of water over high heat get up to a boil for your spaghetti. Add the spaghetti to the boiling water and cook it al-dente. As this is all taking place, place you newly configured BBQ sauce into a sauce pan and have the BBQ sauce warm up.
In a large saute pan over medium-high heat, add some olive oil and then the garlic. What is pasta without garlic?! When the garlic is fragrant and turning color, add the smoked beef brisket. We want to crisp it up a bit more in the olive oil. Using tongs, grab your cooked spaghetti, once al-dente, directly from the pot of water and transfer to the smoked beef brisket BBQ pan.
Spoon over some of the BBQ sauce and using the tongs to coat all the spaghetti and BBQ. Try to spoon enough BBQ sauce so that all is coated, but it is not overwhelming and smothering the noodles and BBQ like a soup.
Top it all off with the handfuls of cheddar and scallions. Look at that beautiful cheese melt. Both the cheese and the scallions bring much needed contrast and sharpness to the BBQ spaghetti – both critical elements. Mix the cheese and scallions into the rest of the spaghetti and serve immediately. Enjoy!