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1st smoke and disappointed

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 
I smoked some babyback ribs on my Brinkmann dual door today and I'm not happy with the results.

Smoked them at 250 the first hour, settled to 225 the rest of the time. They were on the rack for 3 hrs, foiled for 3.5 (guests were running late), and finished on the rack for 45 mins.

Now, all that time and the meat did not pull back from the bone. Also, they were tough. Flavor was good, but I still have pieces stuck between my teeth.

I'm new at this, so if there are any ideas as to what I did wrong I would appreciate them. I was really looking for fall-off-the-bone tender.

post #2 of 37


smoke for 3 and foil for 3.5 and firm for 45 min . Baby backs should have turned to mush by then.
Sounds like your thermo is way off. Are you sure they were bbs / maybe 3 down spares? Even spares would have been well done at the time and temp you are listing.
post #3 of 37
psych - sorry to hear that your frist smoke went so bad. the only thing i can think of is that your temps were WAY low, and by that i mean barely 200 degres. are you sure about the accuracy of your themometer? idoes it show the temp ar the door or at the grate?
post #4 of 37
Thread Starter 
I had a second thermo and both read the same temp. The package said back ribs, but I can't recall the brand and the trash has already been taken out.

I have NEVER been able to cook a good rib. I was hoping this smoker would end the curse.
post #5 of 37
Thread Starter 
I have a multimeter with a temp probe. I ran it through one of the exhaust vents to just above the meat. I read the same as the door thermo.
post #6 of 37
well, BBQ is like making a baby - if it don't work this time, you get to try again!

next time you get some ribs, start a running, step-by-step thread on what you're doing. pix help also. we'll see ya through this and by the end of summer you will be a true pitmaster!PDT_Armataz_01_36.gif
post #7 of 37
Thread Starter 

I will say, the mesquite smoke with the apple juice and 99 Bannanas liquor spritz was very good.

I may try again tomorrow.
post #8 of 37
I'm thinkin the same thing. BBs should have been soup in 7 hours and 15 minutes. Something is goin on. If I had BBs in foil for 3.5 hours after cooking them for 3 hours there is no way I could get them out of the foil and onto the rack. I'd be taking a look at both therms cause somethin just aint right. Don't give it up. Fall off the bone ribs are in your future.
post #9 of 37
One other suggestion.... Never ever buy Hormel Brand Babyback ribs in the sealed package. They inject it with crap and it will taste like nasty ham. Not sure where you get your ribs at but if you get them at Sam's Club, they will be in a clear Cryovaced bag.
Even Super Walmart will have that injected stuff, so read the labels.
post #10 of 37
I'm at a loss, and I don't have your smoker. One of the biggest mistakes a newbi smoker makes is to keep opening the doors (or taking the lid off) his smoker to check. Thereby dumping all his heat. Most folks here won't even look for the first hour, maybe two. Then they open only for however long it takes to mop (and futz) and close back up. Normally I would vote thermometer, but you seem to have that covered.

Did you apply a rub, or marinade? If so, what was it and how long?

Good luck, let us know how the next one goes.
post #11 of 37
Oops . . . didn't see the double-posted thread so I will respond here too.

Reading through your post and looking at your times and temps, I would say that you may have just got some bad racks of ribs. If your temps were accurate, with that amount of time, they should have been okay. But sometimes you get some tough ribs. It happens sometimes.

But beyond that . . . did you remove the membrane? What were you using to measure the smoker temp? Were you using a digital thermo at grate level or the stock smoker therm? The stock ones are usually wrong but on the high side. It is possible that your's was wrong on the low side and you were cooking at below 225°.

I usually smoke mine at around 235° to 245° the entire time. I like a little "tug" to the meat but if I want fall of the bone tender, I follow the 2-2-1 method to the tee but at at least 235°.

Ribs can be a little tricky to get them just the way you want them. I have done several "test racks" along the way. I would say, get another rack and try it again. The best thing about this hobby is you get to eat your test runs.biggrin.gif

post #12 of 37
did you pull the membrane off the back of the BB ribs? biggrin.gif
post #13 of 37
That's the way to look at it! Check your thermos, tear the membrane off and keep a log of what you are doing. Good luck!
post #14 of 37

If I read correctly, you mentioned something about "spritzing."

I find that a big mistake folks make is feeling that they have to do something while cooking...hence all the spritzing.

I say save the sauce/glaze for the last hour or so. You can even get away with saucing just before serving.

If you're looking, you ain't cooking.
post #15 of 37
The meat not pulling up the bone is probably the clue. The heat either had to be way low or the chamber opened lots so it was in continuous recovery, or you were in the twilight zone! Even a bad rack should have tendered up at the times and temps you used. Try again and document every thing including the number of times you opened the smoker. I am at a loss.
post #16 of 37
Thread Starter 
Based on the replys, something is up with the temp.

It's odd, that both thermos read the same temp. I'm wanting to get a wireless thermometer anyway, so maybe that will help. As for spritzing, I probably only hit it about 3 times, and then add some to the foil. I had read opening the door was a no-no.

So, there seems to be several packages of ribs I should avoid. Maybe I haven't looked hard enough, but those are the only kinds I can find. Where do I go and which brand do I get?

Sorry about the double post. Some forums will blast you for posting in the wrong spot, so I started the one in charcoal section and when I came back to delete this one, folks had already responded. icon_redface.gif

Again, thank you for all your help.
post #17 of 37
sorry to hear the first smoke was a disappointment. I'm doing my first smoke today, so far so good. Hope your next one turns out better.
post #18 of 37
I think you'll find we're a pretty friendly bunch.biggrin.gif I'm sure most folks here are more concerned with helping you smoke some great ribs and not really too worried about thread placement.

post #19 of 37

I think the temperature aspects have pretty much been covered, but as for as "packages of ribs". The main thing to look for on the label is the word "enhanced". If you see that.. run from them. Most of the "enhanced" meat, specifically Hormel Brand, but some others, are injected with usually some sort of sodium solution. Not only will they be salty as hell, but as I said previously, they will more than likely taste like cheap ham.

I live in northeast Illinois and there are two places I get my ribs. Sam's Club and more recently a place just over the border in Wisconsin called "Woodman's".
Check out your local Sam's and independent grocery stores as well as butcher shops, although butcher shops tend to be on the expensive side sometimes. Be careful of Super Walmart. Although you would expect Sam's Club and Super Walmart to have the same thing, it's not true. I've seen the "enhanced" pork more often than not at Super Walmart.
post #20 of 37
Did you try again today? How did it go? Did you do anything differently?
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