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Pork ribs questions for the experts (both Spare's and babybacks)

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Im familiar with the 3,2,1 and 2,2,1 methods for spares and baby backs but I'm wondering what the process and timing should be if I don't want to use that method. So, if I want to go without foil and let them smoke the whole time how long should they go for? And second, to mop or not to mop?
post #2 of 5

Hi Kevin, 


I've done both spares and babybacks and they take about the same amount of time to cook whether or not you foil.  The foiling just helps tenderize the ribs some...though if you maintain nice steady temps you won't have any problems with tenderness.


Mopping...I don't waste my time with it cause if you are lookin you ain't cookin and moppin is lookin!  At times I will apply a layer of sauce about 30 minutes before removing from the smoker, but that's it.


Good luck,



post #3 of 5

The cook times will still be close to the 3-2-1 or 2-2-1:  5 or 6 hours, give or take, depending on whether you're doing spares or BBs.  Just remember that those times are only estimates, and the mantra "their done when their done" is one to follow.  A good way to tell when they're done is when they pass the Bend Test


Opinions vary about mopping/spritzing.  I've done 'em both ways, and each turns out great.  Every time you open the smoker, you lose heat, so more times than not, I don't mop or spritz.  Best advice is try it both ways and see what works best for you.


Good luck, and don't forget the Qview!



post #4 of 5

Awesome advice already stated above by PG and Red.  I used to follow the 3-2-1 and 2-2-1 pretty regularly when I first started.  But as time went on I decided to try them without it.  You get an excellent bark on the outside and very tender meat under that bark.  For BB's, I cook them for just about 5.5 hours at 225.  I dont look for the first 2 hours, then I spritz/mop once in the 3rd hour and again in the 4th.  If you sauce them, this can be done in the last hour.  It all comes down to personal preference. 

post #5 of 5

I am the Opposite of some guys. I started with foiling, stopped for a few cooks, then got beat up by the family because they like the flavor my Foiling Juice gives. So I went back to foiling...JJ

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