September 20, 2021/Recipes

Recipe: Slow-Cooked Brisket With Fennel and Onions

A no-fuss meal the whole family can dig into

A plate of brisket topped with cooked onions with a fork and knife nearby

Make this zero-fuss meal the night before you plan on eating it for dinner. The next morning, simply turn on your slow cooker and let the aroma of herbs, spices and savory meat permeate your home. Enjoy the comforts of a truly slow-cooked meal, and marvel at the simplicity of living well. (If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can cook the stew for about one hour in a covered Dutch oven set over medium heat.)


Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy


2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 fennel bulbs, halved and sliced
2 yellow onions, halved and sliced
1 (16-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 head garlic, cloves peeled
8 to 10 thyme sprigs
1 (3-pound) grass-fed lean brisket, cut into 4 pieces
2 teaspoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish


  1. Pour the vinegar and 1/2 cup of water into a 6-quart slow cooker. In a large bowl, combine the fennel, onions, diced tomatoes with their juices, garlic and thyme. Transfer half of the vegetable mixture to the slow cooker. Season the brisket all over with the chili powder, salt and pepper. Place the pieces of meat on top of the vegetables in the slow cooker. Pour the remaining vegetables on top.
  2. Cook on low until the meat easily pulls apart with a fork, 8 to 10 hours. Turn off the slow cooker and let the brisket rest, covered, for about 30 minutes. Remove the thyme sprigs. Using a ladle, transfer 3 cups of the cooking liquid to a medium sauté pan. Bring to a boil over high heat and let the liquid reduce until it thickens into a gravy — keeping a careful eye on it so it doesn’t over-reduce or burn — 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  3. Slice the brisket against the grain. Pour the gravy over the brisket slices, garnish with the parsley and serve with the vegetables on the side.

Nutrition information (per serving)

Makes 4 servings

Calories: 300
Total fat: 11 g
Saturated fat: 4 g
Cholesterol: 76 mg
Fiber: 7 g
Protein: 27 g
Carbohydrate: 25 g
Sodium: 486 mg


— Recipe courtesy of Mark Hyman, MD.

Learn more about our editorial process.

Related Articles

Tofu noodles, pea pods and tai peanut sauce in a wok skillet
April 11, 2024/Recipes
Recipe: Tofu, Noodles and Pea Pods in a Thai Peanut Sauce

Vegetarian or vegan, get your Thai fix with this flavor-filled and healthy dish

Mexican-style street food fish tacos
March 22, 2024/Recipes
20 Healthy Mexican Recipes

From Taco Tuesday to Salsa Sunday (yes, we made that up), these nutritious Mexican-inspired dishes are sure to please

Cooked eggplant halves over marinara pasta and cooked broccolini
March 21, 2024/Recipes
Recipe: Eggplant and Broccolini Parmesan

A delicious twist on this classic dish

pumpkin ravioli with mushroom sauce
February 22, 2024/Recipes
Recipe: Pumpkin Ravioli With Wild Mushrooms

A satisfying and savory meal sure to impress family and friends

Meal prepping various dishes for snack, lunch and dinner
January 29, 2024/Recipes
75 Healthy Meal Prep Ideas for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

No more scrambling to figure out what to eat during your busy week

Shepherd's pie casserole in cast iron pan
January 26, 2024/Recipes
10 Healthy Casserole Recipes To Try

Whether as a main dish, a side or even a dessert, casseroles are the ultimate comfort food

cinnamon thyme chicken breasts
December 21, 2023/Recipes
Herb-Friendly Recipe: Baked Cinnamon-Thyme Chicken

This entrée packs plenty of flavor — and plenty of health benefits

falafel on plate with spoons of sauce
December 17, 2023/Recipes
Recipe: Falafel With Zesty Yogurt Sauce

A delicious dish alone, atop field greens or in a pita pocket stuffed with veggies!

Trending Topics

Person in yellow tshirt and blue jeans relaxing on green couch in living room reading texts on their phone.
Here’s How Many Calories You Naturally Burn in a Day

Your metabolism may torch 1,300 to 2,000 calories daily with no activity

woman snacking on raisins and nuts
52 Foods High In Iron

Pump up your iron intake with foods like tuna, tofu and turkey