Differences Between Spareribs, St. Louis Ribs, Babyback Ribs

By pops6927, Feb 2, 2017 | |
  1. The best way to differentiate between these is to look at the animal and see where they come from:

    This is a whole pig with the backbone split down the center, but not separated. 

    Let's split it:

    Now, let's draw cut lines to separate out the parts'n'pieces:

    and label them:

    First, let's take the Pork Belly Spare Ribs: these also have the pork belly attached, so we have to separate them into:

    Pork Belly:

    and Pork Spareribs:(front and back views):

    Now, from the whole sparerib comes the St. Louis Style sparerib:

    where the Rib Tips are separated from the ribs, and the

    skirt is removed from the rack along with the membrane:

    The Finished St. Louis Style Ribs:

    Then, there is the Carolina Sparerib:

    with only the brisket section removed, giving easier carving into individual ribs.

    Now, above the sparerib/belly section is the Loin:

    If you bone out the loin, you end up with a boneless pork loin:

    with the bones separated.

    Cut the rib bones from the back bone:

    And that is where baby back spareribs come from!

    How much meat is left on from the loin is the choice of the meat cutter.

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  1. crankybuzzard
    Very nice pictorial Pop!
  2. smokinal
    That's excellent Pops!
  3. joe black
    Excellent cutting directions. Should be a must read for all newbies or maybe a link posted in the eCourse.

    Not that I mind, but I have wondered how and why my avatar is shown on this comment place?