With the 3-2-1 Rib

Discussion in 'Pork' started by tinyrv, Dec 1, 2009.

  1. tinyrv

    tinyrv Newbie

    With the 3-2-1 Rib method they seem to fall off the bone more than I would like, what would you think I should change? They taste great but I would like them to stay on the bone a little longer
    I smoke them at 225 with a master built electric


    Richard v
  2. gnubee

    gnubee Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    When Using the 3 2 1 and having them too tender and really falling off the bonz the cure is simple , at the take them out of the foil time when you put them back in the smoker for the last hour, they will slowly begin to firm up again. Check every once in a while and you will soon be able to see them getting to the point of doneness that you like. If they are too loose its because you aren't giving them enough time in the 1 part of the 3 2 1, remember those numbers are just a guide every rack of ribs is different.
    You might need to do them 3-2-1 1/2 or on the other hand you might need to do them 3-2-1/2 . It depends on a lot of factors the meat being the biggest variable. Baby back rigs are closer to 2-2-1 Country style 3-2-1 Most ribs are somewhere in between You will soon develop a sense of if they are done just by looking at them.

    This is going to sound like heresy but Instead of the 3 2 1 , set the smoker to 210-215 F , NO Higher! Give them a rub the night before. Bring the MES up to temp, I like to have it set at 230F at first, Open the door put them in quickly, shut the door, turn the temp controller down to 210F. Start your favorite wood smoke about 10 minutes before you put the meat into the chip tray that way and white billowing smoke has disappeared by the time the meat gets in there. Thats it, now you wait patiently. Dont flip them , dont touch them, dont mop them, don't foil them, and especially dont peek, All you are doing now is to make sure the temp is steady around 212F and the smoke keeps coming out the top vent thin and blue. About 5 hours into the smoke you can begin to check them for doneness. You can tell by the pullback if they are done. They usually take 5.5 - 6 hours to be done. You then take them out and wrap in foil and in the cooler to rest for about 30 minutes. I have to admit that I omit this step quite often and dont rest them at all. As they are done just the way I like them at this point. You will have ribs that taste as good or better than the 3 2 1 or 2 2 1 method. They will have just the right amount of pull to them. If you like to slather on sauce, paint it on the ribs and put them on a very hot grill for 5 minutes to caramalize. Gooooooooood eating!
  3. tinyrv

    tinyrv Newbie

    I plain on doing a brisket at the same time will a temp of 210-215 also work for the brisket it only 4lbs
    Thanks again
  4. alx

    alx Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Another suggestion would be less time in the foil.When i started i would open foil packet and see how tender ribs were at 1 hour mark....If i liked i unfoiled etc.....

    No problem with the brisket,just pull it off smoker at the internal you are shooting for.At 4 pounds you probably have the Flat part of brisket.
  5. pandemonium

    pandemonium Master of the Pit

    i agree i think they are too fall of the bone with that method.
  6. chisoxjim

    chisoxjim Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Id try them without any time in the foil. You might like the results, thats thea way I prefer mine.

    I either go no foil the whole time, or if I am cooking some for guests, I may tent them in foil with some(2-3 tbsp) apple juice & toss them back on the smoker for maybe 30 minutes when they are almost done.
  7. mr mac

    mr mac Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Every once in a while I will do ribs on the gas grill and just rub them, place on the grill set at 200* and leave them alone for four to five hours only opening the lid to swap out the smoke pouch. They have good pull but are still tender enough to get plenty of "mmmm"s from the diners.
  8. meat hunter

    meat hunter Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Sounds like you want a little tug on the ribs when eating them. That's the way I like em too. The 3-2-1 is a good starting point, but not set in stone. More times than not, when I do ribs, they end up somewhere around 2-1-1. The foiling has allot to do with them falling off the bone, so maybe next time, try cutting that time in half. Experiment, that's whats its all about, finding what works for your and liking the results.[​IMG]
  9. larry maddock

    larry maddock Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    ====2--2-1----maybe less on some---i do spare ribs[​IMG]

    i also do prefer them NOT to fall off bone[​IMG]
  10. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I don't care for the fall out bones myself. So I have cut doen the time in the foil and even cut it out all together for a trial run but they had alittle too much pull back. The 3-2-1 and even the 2-2-1 are just the basic method to smoking ribs and it's up to you to tweek it as you see fit.[​IMG]
  11. roksmith

    roksmith Meat Mopper OTBS Member

    Ditto on decreasing the time in the foil.
    After several years of using some form of the 3-2-1 method, I've settled on this.

    For baby backs, my basic numbers are 2-1-2
    For spares (and by spares, I am refering to St. Louis trimmed spares..not a big fan of cooking the whole thing), my basic numbers are 3-1-2

    The longer the ribs spend in the foil, the softer they become, but also the smoke flavor begins to wash out a bit.

    I want the cleanest looking/smelling smoke right around 225 for the first time period. I don't open the smoker to look at them at all. A friend of mine says "If you're looking, you aren't cooking". Good advice.

    I don't even care about pull back during the first timeframe. All I'm trying to do is get the cooking started and the smoke flavor deep inside.

    For the second time period, I do two things:

    1. Wrap in foil with apple juice and a little more rub - double wrapped in heavy duty foil (If I am cooking for a large number.. more than half a dozen or so slabs.. I'll put the ribs in one (or more)of those disposable foil half pans and seal tightly with foil) I also like to cut into my final portion size before foiling. It makes them easier to handle after comnig out of the foil. My normal method call for cutting the slabs down into thirds.. or 4 bone portions. For competitions, I'll leave them whole because they look better in presentation.. but for parties/dinners.. I portion now.

    2. While in foil, I will normally crank up the heat a bit. You really only need to get up over 210-215 or so to boil the brazing juices a bit. but I usually have a little barky wood that I need to burn up, so I toss it in and crank it up to 300 for a spell. At this point I don't care what the smoke looks or smells like because the ribs are protected.

    By the third time period, the temp has cooled back down and the smoke has cleared, so I take the ribs out of the foil and layer on the first bit of sauce and let the ribs firm up, take in some smoke and cook in the first layer of sauce. After about an hour, I'll look at the ribs. At this point, I will add amother layer of sauce. If they need a little more cook time, I'll leave them in the smoker.. if not, they come out of the smoker and get put in a pan to hold them, get covered with foil are rest until eating time. They will hold temperature for awhile in a cooler.. if they need to hold longer, I will put them in a hot box, or back in the smoker and let the smoker temp drop to 150-165.

    I use this method for both competition and/or catering/gatherings and it always turns out just right.

    Everybody likes a slightly different version of "falling off the bone", but since I like to consider even my catering gigs practice for competitions, I always shoot for KCBS standards with respect to doneness.

    Happy cooking all!
  12. tn_bbq

    tn_bbq Smoking Fanatic

    Yep. Simply reduce your foil time.

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