Second Baby Back Smoking - Input Greatly Appreciated

Discussion in 'Pork' started by nbnorcross, May 1, 2016.

  1. nbnorcross

    nbnorcross Newbie

    This afternoon/evening I commenced with smoking my second rack of BBs in the last two weekends.  My first try was an unabashed failure.  The rub last weekend was awful so I purchased Jeff's Original Rub in hopes of redeeming myself...

    The made the rub and coated the rack with the rub and mustard as directed to on Saturday evening.  Using the 2-2-1 method I primed the smoker at 225 at noon, filled the chip tray with half apply and half hickory chips, and put the meat in.  At  2 pm I wrapped the ribs in foil with a mixture of apple cider and rub and returned it to the smoker.  At 4 pm I removed the foil and back in the smoker it went for another hour.  The MES smoked pretty heavy the first hour then a lighter and steadier smoke the rest of the way.  I added the woodchip mixture at 2 and 3:30 or so.  There was never a time when there wasn't some smoke billowing out.  The chips were soaked at 11 and drained just before noon.

    They came out about five and we ate about 5:15 or so.  The results:

    Although Jeff's rub was a significant improvement over last week we still felt it could have been a little sweeter, so we've decided to add a little bit more brown sugar with the next batch of rub I make. Does anyone else have suggestions on how to modify Jeff's recipe, or what can help to make them a tinier bit sweeter?

    Also, though I don't like fall-off-the-bone ribs I felt these were just a bit chewy.  Suggestions?  I thought the wrapping would help, but it didn't help enough.

    Would I have been better off getting spare ribs then BBs? 

    I'm sure I'll have other questions too in a bit, still going through the CQI in my head.

    Thanks, Nick
  2. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Don't know about Jeff's rub, but I know mine is sweet and I think I posted a link to it in one of your previous threads.

    Two things stand out to me-

    1. I prefer to cook ribs at 250°, 225° is a bit too low for good results using the 2-2-1 method IMHO, hence the "chewy" ribs.

    2. You do not need to soak the chips in water, this is the most likely cause of the billowing white smoke.
  3. halfsmoked

    halfsmoked Master of the Pit Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    I never wrap ribs and do them about 5 to 6 hours and I do smoke my chips about 1/2 hour.

  4. crazymoon

    crazymoon Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    nbnc, I think your ribs needed more time at 225. The rib bones aren't showing on your ribs which usually means more time. I've been doing baby backs at 225 but do 3 -2-1(or a bit longer)  with good results. You will have to get a rub that suits you and yours and that will come with a few more smokes .
  5. nbnorcross

    nbnorcross Newbie

    Is there a difference between an extra hour at 225 or the five total hours at 250?
  6. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Yes, one hour[​IMG].

    I am of the opinion that the fat in and on the ribs renders better at the higher temperature, which means better texture and flavor IMHO.
  7. You can sprinkle some brown sugar on the ribs just before you toss them in the smoker. My homemade rub doesn't use much sugar, so I just top my ribs with the brown sugar just prior to smoking. For an added sweetness, you can do a glaze on the ribs. It gives it a sweet/tangy taste and makes them looks super appetizing.

    I use Roxy's Rib Glaze recipe, but I use Jack Daniels Honey Whiskey instead of bourbon. I glaze the ribs 2 or 3 times in the last hour of the cook.

    1/3 cup honey 
    1/4 cup BBQ sauce 
    1/4 cup apple juice 
    1/8 cup cider vinegar 
    1/8 cup bourbon 

  8. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    These are the Recipes I like and work well. I like St Loius cut Spare ribs much better than BB's and 3-2-1 at 225-250 works great in my MES40's...JJ

    Cajun Rib Tickler

    1C Tubinado or Dried Brown Sugar*

    1/4C Paprika**

    2T Kosher Salt

    2T Garlic Powder

    2T Onion Powder

    2T Mustard Powder

    2T Chili Powder

    2tsp Black Pepper

    1-2tsp Cayenne

    2tsp Dry Oregano

    2tsp Dry Thyme

    2tsp Cry Celery Flakes

    1tsp Celery Seed

    Grind the Oregano, Thyme, Celery Flake and Seed. Mix all and store in air tight container, up to 3 months...

    Notes...* Leave out the Sugar for a Cajun Blackening Spice.  Spinkle a lot or a little, on whatever meat, dip in melted Butter or Olive oil and saute in a very hot pan until cooked to your desired IT.

                 ** If you wish you can use Smoked Paprika in the recipe. This will give a seasoning that will add some "Smokey flavor" to Grilled, Sauteed, Fried or Roasted meat, not just stuff you smoke.

    Mix and store in an air tight container. The Kids love this on Popcorn and French Fries too...JJ

    Foiling Juice / Sweet Pulled Pork Finishing Sauce

    Foiling Juice

    For each Rack of Ribs Combine:

    1T Pork Rub, yours

    1/2 Stick Butter

    1/2C Cane Syrup... Dark Corn Syrup...or Honey

    1/4C Apple Cider...or Juice

    1T Molasses

    Optional: 2T Apple Cider Vinegar. Add 2T Mustard and 1/4C Ketchup to make it more of a KC Glaze.

    Simmer until a syrupy consistency.

    Allow to cool for 5 minutes, pour over foiled Ribs and

    run your 2 hour phase of 3-2-1. For the last phase return

    the ribs to the smoker BUT reserve any Juice remaining

    in the Foil. Simmer the Juice over med/low heat to reduce to a saucy thickness. Glaze the Ribs for presentation or service.

    For a Sweet Finishing Sauce for Pulled Pork:  Make a Double batch, skip the Butter.

    If you plan to Foil the meat, add 1/2 the batch to the Foil Pack or place it in a Pan with your Butt, when the IT hits 165*F.

    Cover the pan with foil and continue to heat to 205*F for pulling.

    At 205* rest or hold the Butt in a cooler wrapped in towels until ready to serve.

    Pull the Pork and place it back in the pan with the pan Juices and any additional reserved Foiling Juice to moisten, the meat should be shiny and juicy but not swimming in sauce. Serve while hot...OR... Bag and refrigerate until needed.

    If you choose to Not Foil or Pan the Butt. Add the Finishing Sauce to the pulled meat before serving. Add the hot Finishing Sauce a little at a time until the Pork is moistened, again the meat should be shiny but not swimming in sauce.

    When re-heating place the Pulled Pork in a Pan or Crock pot and add reserved Foiling Juice or Apple Cider, as needed to make up the Juice that was absorbed while the pork was refrigerated. Cover and re-heat in a pre-heated 325-350*F oven or on High in the crock pot to 165*F and Serve.

    I was AMAZED...No additional sauce needed. ENJOY...JJ
  9. crazymoon

    crazymoon Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    nbnc, Probably not much difference,I just got used to times and temp of 225 and continue to cook that way.
  10. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    If the ribs were chewy, they were not cooked long enough.

  11. slipaway

    slipaway Meat Mopper

    I won't comment on the time or temp since many have already done so.

    Over what you read above I might suggest that when you foil the ribs put them on brown sugar and some honey. Apple juice isn't as sweet and I have found that this foiling stuff kicks the ribs up to a sweeter level without needing to change you rub or sauce recipes, That's just my 2 cents worth.
  12. westby

    westby Smoking Fanatic

    I am willing to bet that your actual smoker temp runs a bit cooler than what the MES is showing.  This is not uncommon at all and can be verified with a Maverick or similar multiprobe thermometer.  If you find that it is running cooler, simply compensate by raising the set temp until you get the actual temp you want.

    I see a lot of people new to smoking use the 3-2-1 method blindly without knowing how hot their smoker really runs.  If it runs cool, they will be undercooked.  If it runs hot, they will be too "fall off the bone" and mushy.  You really need to use 3-2-1 as a guide and not go strictly by that.  Doing the bend test and/or probing for tenderness will tell you if they are done or not and will be much more reliable than just going by time.
  13. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★


    Check the CC to see how far off it is.mine can be as much as 50* off

  14. nbnorcross

    nbnorcross Newbie

    Sorry, "CC"?
  15. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Cooking Chamber

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