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Greetings fellow CookShackers.   I know the SM066 has a hold feature BUT it is only for six hours, and I know that I can set the temp to 145 or 150 and walk away as well. I have been searching far and wide on the internet for holding oven ideas without dropping 4500 bucks on a real holding oven.

My plan is to hold briskets at 150 degrees for at least 24 hours prior to serving.  I am doing brisket over the Memorial Day weekend.

In the spirit of American exceptionalism, I discovered a Canadian beat me to the punch on this.  Not only did he turn a cooler into a holding oven, but he also turned an old chest freezer into one as well.  Here is the link:

He did not give any specifics.  He just drilled a hole and shoved in the Sous Vide.

Here is my take on this.

Parts:  JB Weld, Marine adhesive, two – (2) inch repair couplings, one – 1.5-inch pvc cleanout with plug (optional), four – 12-inch threaded rods, 16 flat washers, 16 nuts, 2 cooling racks that fit your cooler, and 2.75-inch hole saw.

I drilled a hole in the cooler at an angle so the Sous Vide heater would somewhat vertical.  JB Weld the two repair couplings together and insert them into the hole.  Use the marine adhesive to seal the hole and glue the couplings into place.

The rods, washers, and nuts are for holding the rack up and keeping it together.

I am not providing any measurements for hole location or rack set up as it is cooler dependent.  The cleanout plug can be insert into the coupling if you want to use the cooler as a cooler.

It's not pretty but see the pics below.  It was more difficult than I though to drill a vertical hole in the side of a cooler.

capcouplinginsideoutsiderack insideracksous vide inside with racksous vide insidesous vide outsidesous vide


Images (10)
  • cap
  • coupling
  • inside
  • outside
  • rack inside
  • rack
  • sous vide inside with rack
  • sous vide inside
  • sous vide outside
  • sous vide
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My angle needs to be about 1/2 inch more to lower the Sous Vide under water at the minimum mark.  Where I screwed the pooch is placing the hole too close to the bottom.  I am going to use my maritime Loctite and a piece of plastic to seal the hole and start over.

I have a 26 qt Polycarbonate Food Pan 20"L x 13"W x 8"D.  I'm testing it know to see what the internal air temperature is with the water temperature at 150 degrees.  It's not insulated it has an insulation sleeve that fits around the container.

The racks I purchased for the cooler fit perfectly.  I'll have enough space to elevate the rack and keep the brisket out of the water.

After 30 minutes, the water temperature is 150 degrees and the air temperature 134 degrees and rising.

I'll post more later.

Yes.  Here is my cooking method for this:

Initial smoker temp: 225 - smoke the brisket until about 165-170
Increase temp to 275 - cook until the temp reaches 185-190

Rest brisket to 155 and wrap with butcher paper place into an aluminum pan and seal off with foil and place into the holding cooler for another 16 hours minimum at 150 degrees.

The brisket won't cook anymore but the long hold should keep rendering and the brisket should be done after 16 more hours.

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