Sante Fe Brisket

This post was sponsored by Stubb’s Legendary BBQ. I received compensation and products for writing this article, however, ALL opinions expressed are my own.


We’re right around the corner from the 4th of July – can you believe it? When I think of the 4th, I immediately think hanging out with friends and family, fireworks, and of course grilling out.

One of my favorite things to make on the grill is brisket, and smoking is my preferred method. My go to sauces and rubs are Stubb’s. They have a great line of both. You can always spot their products easily because of the label – Stubb’s Legendary Bar-B-Q was founded by C.B. “Stubb” Stubblefield in Austin, Texas, and his picture appears on every bottle. For the Fourth of July, I teamed up with Stubb’s to create a delicious brisket taco bar. Brisket is the perfect meat because it can easily feed a crowd, just like tacos! When I make tacos, I want anything and everything from fresh guacamole, sour cream, jalapenos, tomatoes, fresh cilantro, cheeses, pico de gallo (I even made blueberry pico). With numerous toppings, guests can pick and choose what they like, all the while enjoying hearty brisket. It’s delicious and so festive!

For my brisket, I created this delicious wet rub that included both Stubb’s Steak Spice Rub (I’m obsessed with that stuff, btw) and Original BBQ Sauce. It’s hands down the best thing I’ve ever slathered on any hunk of meat.

Here’s my brisket about to go into the smoker. Remember – fat side up! You want the fat running down the sides and infusing the meat for extra tenderness and flavor.
and this is out…

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Check out this burnt end (my favorite part!) –

Slather the meat with the rub and sauces before putting it on the grill – but make sure to not leave it on longer than 30 minutes before putting it in the smoker or it will draw salt out, which will pull moisture from the meat.
You can cut against the grain for tender slices. Not sure where the grain is? It’s easier to see on the raw meat before it’s rubbed, so cut a notch when prepping to help guide once it’s cooked.
Another burnt end shot…because I can’t get enough.
Blueberry pico de gallo
Oh, and I almost forgot – one of my favorites – white jalapeno dip.
I also made a fun beverage station with traditional margaritas, Mexican beer and cold Coca-Cola.
Lots of tortilla chips for the dips.
The bar was great because everybody got to customize their own brisket tacos.
If you like the little markers for my bar, they’re so easy to make. I got most of the material at Michaels, but I’m sure they carry the same things at any craft store. The tiny pots are very inexpensive, as well as the miniature chalk board sticks and I used a chalkboard marker to write on them. I cut small strips of burlap that I adhered to the pots with a glue stick.

They were fun to make, and my guests loved them. Of course, everyone went back for seconds.
And thirds.
Oh my word… Brisket tacos!
Stubb’s carries a long line of sauces, marinades, marinade mixes, rubs, Anytime sauces, and the list goes on and on. All Stubb’s products are free of high fructose corn syrup (which happens to be the first or second ingredient in most barbecue sauces) and contain no artificial flavors or colors from artificial sources. They’re also gluten-free!

Go here to see the complete line of products, and follow them on Facebook here.

Here’s a few links to some things I’ve created using their awesome stuff. I’m in love with their Anytime Sauces. After you check out the recipe below, please click on the links and check these out!

My favorite – Steak Sliders with Sweet Black Pepper Onions and Blue Cheese Sauce

This one is divine – Tilapia Sliders with Watermelon Basil Salsa, Green Chile Sauce and Feta

These wings are addictive – Apricot Sriracha Wings

Here’s your printable for the brisket!

Sante Fe Brisket

Sante Fe Brisket


  • 10 pound brisket
  • Dry Ingredients:
  • 3 tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbsp cumin
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 2 tbsp seasoned salt
  • 2 tbsp Stubb's Steak Spice Rub
  • Wet Ingredients:
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 12 oz apple flavored beer
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup Stubb's Original BBQ Sauce


  • Combine dry ingredients and olive oil in a small bowl.
  • Whisk the remaining wet ingredients together and pour over brisket.
  • Spoon dry ingredient mixture on all sides of brisket, massaging it into meat to form a
  • crust.
  • Cover and allow brisket to come to room temperature.
  • Smoke brisket over indirect heat at 210 degrees for 8-10 hours, or until internal
  • temperature at thickest part of the brisket is 185 degrees.
  • It’s not done until you add the sauce! Serve with sauce on top or on the side for dipping.
  • Enjoy!

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Crab Pineapple Salsa

I have something new today – and guess what!!!

It’s not a burger.

It’s Crab Pineapple Salsa.
Crab Pineapple Salsa It’s not your typical salsa…but it’s so damn good.
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Summery, fresh and light.


A little hot.    <—- I love hot, FYI.

I put some serrano in there for a kick. What? You knew I would.
Crab Pineapple Salsa|Dixie Chik Cooks OMG –  the pineapple, crab and serrano all work together like they were meant to be in some type of polygamous situation. I do have a way with flavor; can’t help it. It’s like I can taste shit before I even really taste it and it drives me to make whatever it is I’m concocting in my head. Nine times out of ten it works out. Ok, well maybe eight times out of ten.

It’s not a big secret that seafood and fruit pair well. It’s how you pull all of the ingredients together that make it awesome.

Make this for your next cookout and your guests will love you. Or just make it because you want to. Food never needs a reason to be made.

Here’s your printable-

Crab Pineapple Salsa

Crab Pineapple Salsa


  • 1 cup crabmeat, chopped
  • 1/2 pineapple, diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 16 oz. can petite diced tomatoes, drained and rinsed
  • 1 serrano pepper, diced
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp sea salt


  • Combine everything in a bowl and refrigerate for at least a day.
  • Salt to taste and serve with chips.

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Braised Rib Sliders on Jalapeno Cheddar Corn Muffins

It’s summertime, and of course, that means grilling. Buutttt…..I will go ahead and tell you that I don’t have a rib recipe for you today.

However, what I do have is a recipe for leftover braised ribs – sliders. My favorite thing in the whole, wide world, of course.
Rib Sliders The particular ribs I used in this slider were made by my brother, and he’s so bad about not writing anything down, measuring, etc. that I don’t have a recipe for them to share with you. But, he promised that when he makes them again he will write it down, and of course I’ll share it with you.

They were so damn good.
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What I did was pull the meat from the bones, saturated them a little with more sauce and made these. The little buns are actually tiny corn bread thingies. You can find the recipe for them here.  They’re very easy. I also threw a few ears of fresh corn in the oven to top them with. It all just worked out beautifully; it was one of those things that happens when you aren’t putting too much thought into it and shit comes to mind, you do it and it works like magic. That’s exactly how my Mango Jalapeno Sloppy Joe Sliders happened and they were literally mentioned on the Today Show. That shit wouldn’t have happened if I actually set out to get some kind of national recognition for a recipe.

Go figure.

I rounded these out perfectly with fresh cilantro and a pickle on top.

All of it worked. Every single bit.
Rib Sliders If you’re not a fan of heat or jalapenos, just simply leave those out of the corn muffin recipe. They’ll be just as good, but I love the jalapeno flavor and it marries so well with the beef.

My choice of cheese here is sharp white because it’s strong and stands up to the other flavors so well.

Cabot, of course.
I can’t think of a better way to use leftover bbq rib meat. It’s like an entirely different meal.
Here’s your printable-

Braised Rib Sliders on Jalapeno Cheddar Corn Muffins

Braised Rib Sliders on Jalapeno Cheddar Corn Muffins


  • Beef shredded from leftover braised ribs
  • Your favorite BBQ sauce, or whatever sauce you used for your ribs
  • This Jalapeno White Cheddar Corn Muffin recipe, sliced in half horizontally
  • Fresh white and yellow corn ears
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Dill pickle slices


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Roast ears of corn for 10 minutes on each side, let cool and shuck
  • Assemble sliders by placing beef on bottom part of muffin, add corn, cilantro and top with remaining bun half.
  • Top with pickle slice and serve.
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Caribbean Smoked Chicken & Spicy Smoked Lamb (Big Green Eggs in the “Ham” Fest)

Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to participate in a smoking competition – and I’ve never even used a smoker before.
Thank goodness I had fantastic help.

The competition was called Big Green Eggs in the ‘Ham, a 5th year charity fundraiser for Easter Seals of Birmingham. It was a fun event featuring food, beer, and live music. They also had kids’ activities including bouncy houses and face painting.

The premise of the competition was basically to smoke pretty much whatever we wanted on a Big Green Egg smoker, give out samples to event goers, and turn in our submissions at allotted times.
We decided on two categories; Chicken and “Everything Else”. We made smoked chicken and leg of lamb boneless roast, and both were phenomenal.
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I do think that the chicken was the best.
It was so off the charts tender. I rubbed it with a Caribbean spice blend and it was perfectly seasoned.
So pretty…all perched on a beer can. The small amount of beer left in the can infuses into the chicken as it smokes, helping to keep it moist.
Smoked Chicken

We also smoked a leg of lamb rubbed with a ras el hanout spice blend recipe – both the Caribbean and ras el hanout recipes are found in Ally’s Kitchen- A Passport for Adventurous Palates. Ally is a good friend of mine; blogger, food sport competitor and food lover that is a consistent source of inspiration.
I changed the ras en hanout a little; I omitted the curries, safron, cloves and added more Hungarian paprika and cayenne. It was definitely spicy, but tender.
We definitely did those right.

One thing we didn’t do right, however, was keeping the damn lid from falling over and busting into about 50 pieces.
It wasn’t our fault…

Apparently, if the new “eggs” heat up too quickly the ceramic expands and can cause the hinge on the back of the grill to disengage. At least that’s what I got from the explanation given to us.
Big Green Egg It wasn’t a problem; they immediately brought us a new one and we were able to wrap everything up on time.

Go here to find out more about Easter Seals of Birmingham and how to donate.

Here’s your printable –

Caribbean Smoked Chicken & Spicy Smoked Lamb

Caribbean Smoked Chicken & Spicy Smoked Lamb


  • 2 whole chickens, approximately 5 lbs each
  • 1 boneless leg of lamb, approximately 5 lbs
  • 2 beer cans, approximately half empty
  • Brine For Chicken and Lamb:
  • 1 gallon water
  • 3 lemons, quartered (I had Meyer lemons on hand, but regular will work)
  • 2 oranges, quartered
  • 1 cup peppercorns
  • 3 tbsp jarred minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp thyme
  • 2 tbsp rosemary
  • 1 cup salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • Rub for Chicken:
  • 2 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tbsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp garlic
  • 1 tbsp black pepper
  • 1 tried dried onion flakes
  • 1 tbsp tumeric
  • 2 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp ginger
  • 1 tbsp allspice
  • 1 tbsp cilantro
  • 1 tbsp cayenne
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • Rub for Lamb:
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp cardamom
  • 2 tsp tumeric
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp pepper
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1 tsp dry mustard
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp Old Bay
  • 1 tsp chili pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar


  • Combine brine ingredients and place into large plastic containers or large freezer bags that seal very well.
  • Place in fridge and allow to brine for 48 hours.
  • Combine rubs in separate containers and store in fridge.
  • Drain meats and discard brine; pat dry.
  • Split vinegar in half and combine with each rub to make a "wet rub".
  • Rub chickens (place a beer can into each cavity of the chickens and stabilize on grill) and lamb with rub and smoke over indirect heat at 275-350 for 3-4 hours. <---Use your judgment here; I'm no smoking expert.


Play around with the rub ingredients depending on your tolerance for heat level; the rub I used on the lamb is considerably more spicy than the Caribbean rub on the chicken.

You don't have to brine the full 48 hours; but I find that this length of time yields the most tender meat.

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Salty Tostones with Basil Avocado Chimichurri

I had no idea I would love these as much as I do.
Tostones with Avocado Chimichurri But they have me smitten.

Tostones are plantains that are sliced and fried. Plantains are very firm bananas – a staple in Latin American countries and the Caribbean. This was my first time messing around with them.

I tasted a recipe similar to this while I was working in the Cooking Light studios a few weeks ago, and I was blown away.
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I absolutely despise bananas; I had to put the fact that they’re a member of the banana family completely out of my mind.

Here’s a little story about me and bananas (if you’re curious as to why I hate them). My ex-husband is a long time DJ for large events, and for about five years in a row he worked for Bruce Willis in the Turks and Caicos Islands for his New Years Eve party. The first year I went, I made the mistake of ordering a fruit platter for breakfast the morning of the big party, which included sliced banana. I hadn’t eaten a banana in years, and didn’t think much about it. Over the course of the day, my belly became so bloated I looked about 6 months pregnant.

So, I planned on wearing a very form fitting black dress (yes, I wore it).

That’s a just-my-luck type situation. Needless to say, I haven’t had a banana since.

Bananas are basically assholes.

Anyway, that’s why I don’t eat them. For whatever reason, these plantains didn’t affect me at all.
Tostones The chimichurri is outstanding.

The avocado makes the chimichurri ultra velvety, adds a depth and richness only an avocado can give, and the red pepper flakes gives it just enough of a little kick.
Here’s your printable-

Salty Tostones with Avocado Chimichurri

Salty Tostones with Avocado Chimichurri


    For the Tostones:
  • 2 plantains, peeled and sliced into rounds
  • 3 cups sunflower oil
  • Coarse sea salt
  • Cracked black pepper
  • For the Chimichurri:
  • 2 tsp fresh minced garlic, (about 2 cloves)
  • 2 packed cups fresh basil leaves
  • 1 packed cup fresh parsley leaves (can substitute fresh mint)
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper


    For the Tostones:
  • Bring the oil over medium high heat and fry plantains about 1-2 minutes on each side; drain on paper towels.
  • Sprinkle with salt.
  • For the Chimichurri:
  • Combine everything in a food processor, cover and refrigerate until tostones are ready.
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