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3-2-1 method - What are some alternatives to using apple juice as the liquid?

Discussion in 'Pork' started by hkeiner, Mar 4, 2011.

  1. Hi,

    Are there many alternative liquids that can  be used when doing the 3-2-1 method for pork ribs? That is, the liquid put in the foil with the ribs during the "2" phase. I have been using apple juice (and it works just fine ) but often I don't have any on hand. Rather than going out to buy a large container of apple juice (with a lot of it going unused) I was wondering if any of the other liquids that I often do have on hand would be OK to use.

    Any opinions/experience on whether any of the altenatives listed below would be OK to use or if they would result in a certain disaster?

    - Beer

    - White wine

    - Water (perhaps flavored with seasonings)

    - Cola (Pepsi)

    - Lemon soda (Sprite)

    - Orange juice

    - Nothing at all
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2011
  2. Bearcarver

    Bearcarver SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Group Lead OTBS Member

    I would say just about anything you like.

    I usually use Apple Juice & some kind of a BBQ sauce mixed.

    My last smoke (I just posted today) was two chuckies.

    I do the same with them---This time I added a mixture of:

    I foiled them at 168˚ and 171˚, and added to each package (after bringing to boil):

    1 ounce of Sweet Baby Ray's

    1 ounce of Ken's Teriyaki Marinade

    3 ounces of Pomegranate Juice

    2 ounces of water

    It tasted great,

  3. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

  4. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    To that list I would add

    Beef Broth

    Rum (diluted)

    Liquid Crab boil diluted with broth or water  (ask Eman!)

    Thinned BBQ Sauce

  5. Cider Vinegar mixed with Spiced rum & brown sugar is pretty good...

    Honey & Cider Vinagar is also pretty good...

    A lot of differetn Fruit Juices will work... IMO i would stay awy from OJ & Lemon Soda though... just dont know if that would be a good choice...
  6. SmokinAl

    SmokinAl SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I just use beer, no problem drinking the rest of the bottle.   [​IMG]
  7. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    When drinking beer, I use brandy.  When drinking brandy, I use beer.  No use cutting myself short.
  8. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    all sound good...think next time I foil I'm going with some honey and some chipotle peppers mashed up in the honey for some smoky sweet heat goodness
  9. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    Be very careful if using straight honey as it can burn pretty easy.

     You can use any fruit juice.  I like apple , cranberry, mango, white grape,

    Have tried a few citrus juices and IMHO it seemed to make the meat a lil mushy .
  10. So it seems that using beer, white wine, or Pepsi would not be a big mistake. Only one at a time, not mixed all together.

    Thought I would ask instead of learning from experience in case one of these was a very bad idea. Thanks for the opinions...
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2011
  11. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I use Sprite and a powdered Apple Cidar

  12. pineywoods

    pineywoods SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member OTBS Admin SMF Premier Member

    Get some squeeze bottle butter. When foiling coat them with honey and the butter then wrap them up
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2011
  13. les3176

    les3176 Master of the Pit

    I have used alot of fruit juices apple,grape,guava,cherry,pomeranate,even lemonade once.

    I tend not to use citrus too much because the acid will make the meat mushy...found that out!

    Also like coke-cola,dr. pepper

    Most of the time i will add some butter brown sugar or some rum and honey too.

    It's really a personal choice on what you want to use, let your imagination go wild!!!
  14. retread

    retread Meat Mopper

    I use a mix of apple juice and bourbon (1/2 and 1/2)
  15. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Many BBQers foil with no liquid with good results, at least judging from replies to previous similar threads.

    Citrus should be used with a spicy or citus rub IMHO.

    I use 2-3 tbs light brown sugar and 1-2 tbs BBQ sauce when I foil ribs, you don't need much liquid in the foil.
  16. rbranstner

    rbranstner Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I don't put any liquid in the foil  with my ribs. I do the Johnny Trigg method which is adding brown sugar, butter, honey and some times tiger sauce. These ingredients will end up making some nice flavor and liquid in the foil and they will come out tender just like you were adding any other liquid in the foil. I cut my rack in half and one half gets the Johnny Trigg treatment for me and the other half usually gets apple juice for my wife since she doesn't like all of the sweet stuff on her ribs.
  17. I'm a big fan of no liquid, but then again I only cook spares so they're a little more forgiving.  I get plenty of tenderness without any juice.  In the past I have used a mix of Dr. Pepper, garlic powder, and a little apple cider vinegar.
  18. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I don't add liquid during the foil stage but you could  add the drippings from the ribs themselves.
  19. I have been using some Dr. Pepper and loving it.
  20. hmcm

    hmcm Smoke Blower

    I've heard that root beer is pretty good but haven't actually tried it myself.  [​IMG]

    Plan to some day though...