Kenseth led 169 of 334 laps at the 1 1/2-mile, high-banked track for his 19th career victory, his first since California in February 2009. Since his other win at Texas in 2002, Kenseth had four runner-up finishes and six other top-10 finishes at the track.
This time, the No. 17 Roush Fenway Ford was trailing late behind Tony Stewart and Kurt Busch when both of those drivers were out of sequence on stops and trying to stretch fuel in hopes of catching a caution. Lucky for Kenseth, there were no yellow flags at the wrong time.
Stewart had gone 58 laps since his last stop with 58 laps to go, and had nearly a 17-second lead over Kenseth when he made his stop. Any chance for a victory ended when Stewart got penalized for speeding on pit road. He finished 12th, the last driver on the lead lap even though he coasted across the finish line after running out of fuel.
Kenseth went back ahead to stay with 13 laps to go when Busch had to make his final stop and give up an 8.2-second lead. Kenseth finished 8.315 seconds ahead of Clint Bowyer.
"Over two years, I didn't know if I'd get a chance to get here again," Kenseth said in Victory Lane.
Kenseth led nine different times and won with an average speed of 149.234 mph. The race featured 31 lead changes among 13 drivers.
It was a weekend sweep at Texas Motor Speedway for car owner Jack Roush after Carl Edwards won the Nationwide race Friday night. Roush has 16 NASCAR wins in Texas -- eight in Cup, seven in Nationwide and one in Trucks.
Edwards took over the season points lead by nine over Kyle Busch, who finished 16th. Kurt Busch, who led five times for 50 laps, finished 10th.
Kenseth had led only five laps in the first six races this season, but was coming off three consecutive finishes in the top six.