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Thoughts on smoking ribs the day before a party

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

I'm hosting a big party this weekend where I plan to smoke about 10-15 racks of ribs and 2 pork butts. Given the limited capacity of my WSM 18, I'm thinking of smoking the ribs the day before the party, storing them over night, and then throwing them on the BBQ the day of the party where I will sauce them up.

Has anyone ever done this before? Or have any input on this method? 

I'm assuming storing them in the fridge overnight would be best as I'm not sure how they would keep in an empty cooler.

post #2 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wang61 View Post
 

I'm hosting a big party this weekend where I plan to smoke about 10-15 racks of ribs and 2 pork butts. Given the limited capacity of my WSM 18, I'm thinking of smoking the ribs the day before the party, storing them over night, and then throwing them on the BBQ the day of the party where I will sauce them up.

Has anyone ever done this before? Or have any input on this method? 

I'm assuming storing them in the fridge overnight would be best as I'm not sure how they would keep in an empty cooler.

Using the 3-2-1 method do 3-2 Store in fridge finish on the grill my 2 cents

Richie

post #3 of 13

It's done all the time.

 

They shouldn't be fully cooked, but close to it.

 

For instance if you were to do the 3-2-1 method.

 

You would do the 3-2 the day before, refrigerate overnight & then finish on a grill w/sauce at the party.

 

Al

post #4 of 13

Ha Richie, you type faster than me!!

 

Al

post #5 of 13

I just did this this weekend.  Smoked on Saturday.  Heated up on grill on Sunday.  I didn't use 3-2-1 but I did leave them just a bit undercooked, just a bit, put in a foil pan still hot and covered with foil before refrigerator.  Warmed up slowly on the grill.  They turned out great. 

post #6 of 13

And yes definitely in the fridge

post #7 of 13

Yep...I do the same thing. They always turn out great!! Glad your did as well!!

post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the replies everyone.  I was just wondering, if I should smoke the butts the day before instead of the ribs?  Any input on that?

post #9 of 13

I had a graduation party a couple of years ago for one of the grand sons I smoked the Brisket and Pork butt the day before and Ribs sausage, boudin, and beans the day of..

Sometimes you have to do what you have to.  It all warm up really well.

 

Gary

post #10 of 13
Sure you can....in fact, some will say the pulled pork tastes better next day!
post #11 of 13
I'd definitely do the pork butts in advance. I'm one of the people Sauced mentioned that thinks pulled pork benefits from a day in the fridge. Plus it'll make life much easier on you the day of the party. That way you can just concentrate on the ribs and the party guests.
Wait... I just re-read your post. 10-15 racks of ribs in an 18"WSM is gonna take a few runs. I'd start the whole process several days in advance. Get the ribs AND the pork done, then smoke up som ABT's or Moinks or some fatties the day of so your guests get to see and smell the smoker running without you stressing yourself out.
post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mdboatbum View Post

I'd definitely do the pork butts in advance. I'm one of the people Sauced mentioned that thinks pulled pork benefits from a day in the fridge. Plus it'll make life much easier on you the day of the party. That way you can just concentrate on the ribs and the party guests.
Wait... I just re-read your post. 10-15 racks of ribs in an 18"WSM is gonna take a few runs. I'd start the whole process several days in advance. Get the ribs AND the pork done, then smoke up som ABT's or Moinks or some fatties the day of so your guests get to see and smell the smoker running without you stressing yourself out.

yeahthat.gif

 

There's no way you'll get that many racks of ribs into your wsm, even using a rib rack. I'm all for cooking in advance, and reheating. I'd do it all in advance. I also feel that pulled pork is better a day or two after it's been smoked.

If you are wanting to enjoy the party do everything ahead of time. And if you want do what MD suggests and make appetizers the day of.

post #13 of 13

For me it's a coin toss. If I have the cooker space (and the venue allows it, if traveling), I like to cook as much of the meats as possible onsite and have it fresh out of the smoker. The down-side, as mentioned in a round-about way, is you'll have less time to spend with guests and family when tending cookers.

 

This past weekend I traveled out of state for a smaller 2-1/2 day family gathering. I hauled my gear, cookers, supplies and much of the food I contributed (as well as local purchases), including a large batch of pasta salad (prepped the evening before). For certain dishes, I precooked my bacon so I wouldn't have to spend the time doing that on site. Others attending prepared some extra sides and deserts...it all worked out beautifully and there were happy bellies and smiling faces with every meal.

 

The main considerations with larger quantities is cooker space and time. You have to manage your capacities and time-frame to what works for your situation. If precooking is the only way that you can comfortably bring it to the table, then, you need to stick with what you know will work. While I'm not a huge fan of reheated ribs (I'm damned fussy), I have done it and they work fine. Go with your gut.

 

Also, it's easy to cook entirely too much meats...been there, done that, all the time. If you have 2-3 sides there are always excess meats, in my past experience. One slab of BBs will feed 3-4, spares 4-5. 8lb precooked weight of butt feeds 15-18. You may be able to reduce your quantities based on these numbers...maybe not...not knowing your expected head-count, that's up to you.

 

Good luck, good smoke, and enjoy the experience while you learn along the way...it's all good.

 

 

Eric

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