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Babby Backs Gone Wrong (long post) help please!

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

      Hi all, First all a short introduction, I have been lurking and learning for a while now, and yesterday I smoked some baby backs.  This is about my 10thsmoke and quite possibly the worst of the bunch.  First off I used a dry rub of brown sugar, chili powder, cayenne, little cumin, garlic powder, and Spanish paprika.  I spritzed the ribs with a mixture of Apple juice, Crown Royal, and Root beer. (Yep I know I’m crazy). I used the 2-2-1 method that has worked fantastic for me in the past.  Prepped the Ribs the night b4 by pulling the back scrim off and rubbing them with mustard and the dry rub and let them chill overnight.  Now at the time I didn’t notice any thing different about the BBR”S.  Got up Sunday and fired up the smoker using hickory and oak, kept the temp low and slow at 225-240.  Let the ribs chill out for about an hour b4 putting them in the smoker.

       Ok dropped them in and as I said b4 followed the 2-2-1 method I also usually put a little of my spritz in the foil when I close them up.  The flavor turned out fantastic, got about ½” pull back from the bone, let them rest for about 15min while the DW finished prepping the other goodies, which by the way were the best baked beans I have ever tasted and wife’s girlfriend brought some of the best tater salad I had ever had.  Then I go to cut the ribs to serve them and they are kind of tough and it’s like there was a bone running horizontal of the rib bones.  I had never seen any thing like this, so I cut through them and as they are eating I’m noticing that it appears to be a membrane running through the ribs similar to what you pull off the back side but much thicker.  I grabbed one and took a bite and the meat was great but it was as if some on took the bones out of a rack put a very thick membrane on it and glued it onto of another rack of ribs.  I know I’m new but I swear that the first nine batches mad this look like a childish attempt at ribs.  So needles to say I was pissed and embarrassed.  Has any one ever had this experience?  Did I not cook long enough?  Could I have gotten a bad bunch of BBR’s?  Any help or opinions will be greatly appreciated; also I will have the Q-view up later this evening.  Thanks in advance.


post #2 of 12


     I can't say that I've had the exact problem that you described. The closest I can come is back a lot of years ago, when I had first started smoking, I did a batch of ribs that turned out to be pretty tough. I talked through it with the folks here on the forum and decided that I had not gotten them done. I had them on for about the right amount of time but the for some reason, the ribs just didn't get done. I have been a lot more careful since then about the pit temp, the accuracy of my thermometer and the time in the pit and have not had the problem again. Hope this helps.

post #3 of 12

Describing a "thick membrane" in the ribs throws a curve ball.  If the meat is undercooked and tough, it's just undercooked and tough, there wouldn't be the appearance of an additional membrane.  Are you sure you pulled the silver skin when prepping and are you sure your description of an additional membrane is accurate?  Maybe one of the meat gurus can comment on the type of pig or cut of meat that is anatomically different then the pigs I am familiar with?   


Everything else you described is right on mark and I am surprised that you got unsatisfactory results.



post #4 of 12

Do you have a picture of them? Sounds to me like someone labled spare ribs as baby backs. They do this regularly at the local IGA.

post #5 of 12


Originally Posted by cliffcarter View Post

Do you have a picture of them? Sounds to me like someone labled spare ribs as baby backs. They do this regularly at the local IGA.

That is it.

post #6 of 12

you either got spare ribs that needed to be trimmed st louis style if you dont want the skirt or the butcher did a bad job cutting the BBs and left too much of the top side on.  one way to tell the difference aside from size of the rack is that the BBs are usually a more uniform length vertically measuring than untrimmed spares.  spares kind of buldge out in the middle and taper off at the end.

Originally Posted by BigDaddyLove View Post

wife’s girlfriend

awwwww yeah boyyyyeeeeee!!!


(sorry couldnt resist)

post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 


post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 

I posted the q-view but not sure if my description made it.  if not i will post the description in another entry.  Also will take a pick of the rib side view up close.  I am sure now that they were just under cooked.  I usally buy them from sams and they are always around $23-25 for 3 racks.  Saturday they had all the meat out of their coolers cause they had problems.  Asked butcher to grab me a pack and he did but the per # price was the same but they were $31.00   so through deductive reasonig i figure i screwed up and unde cook.  CRAP

post #9 of 12

Yep, Those look like spares to me.

post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 

Does any one know how to insert comments along with pics?  I filled out the description on the download screen, but they did not appear.  Also tried to insert comments but when i would add foto it would just get all screwed up,  help, hints, suggestions?


First pick= Going on the grill


Second & 3 pic is after tent


Fourth pick resting


fifth pick on the plate with Bbeans and Psalad


Last pic is b4 tent.


post #11 of 12

Looks like spare ribs to me as well.

post #12 of 12

Just a quick story; One time (and only one time mind you) LOL I smoked spares for 5 hrs 2-2-1. And these things were so tuff it was as if the membrane hadn't been removed, and you couldn't even pull the meat from the bones! That's when I learnd that the Temp guage that came in the smoker was not even close to accurate! They were not close to being done! A good thermometer goes a long way;-)

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