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Fast and Hot Ribs by SQWIB

Discussion in 'Pork' started by sqwib, Jul 23, 2012.

  1. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Fixed Broken links to photos March 20, 2013


    Fast and Hot Ribs

    July 23, 2012

    This weekend I decided to give fast and hot Ribs a try.

    It all started when watching an episode of Restaurant Impossible,
    "Pollard's Bar-B-Que", Robert Irvine was bashing this poor guys ribs and I really felt for the guy. I know how bad you can feel as a cook when someone says your food SUCKS! I know it's all for drama and is scripted, but thought, wow! how would I feel if someone said that to me.

    Me and my better half were watching this episode and when Robert said, put the ribs on at 450° for an hour, my jaw dropped.
    Me being the know-it-all that I am as well as a skeptic, I sat there and said no way this can turn out good, but the restaurant owner also does his ribs fast and hot.

    The whole time I keep hearing this voice in my head 3-2-1, 3-2-1, But since I am fairly open minded I thought, wow if this works, I could have a rib dinner in 90 minutes including prep time as opposed to 6 or 7 hours, although I do love the time I spend with my smoker... it's my ME time, it's nice to know there's a quicker way if needed.

    So in order for me to form an opinion or pass judgement, and to be fair I had to test this out for myself. So with my lovely assistants, (my better half and my younger daughter) we decided to give it a shot.
    Well shortly after we decided on trying this, two guinea pigs stopped by, Mom and Dad, I swear they must have the house bugged.
    So I persuaded (yeah right) for them to stay and test out this recipe.

    When my better half said your ribs are perfect why even try this... I said, "because I need to know".

    I will post the Recipe followed by the results, my suggested tweaks the photos, and some closing notes.

    Lets start with Roberts recipe


    • 4 racks baby back ribs I Substituted 3 Spare ribs Trimmed St. Louis style
    • 1 cup soy sauce
    • 1 cup Worcestershire sauce
    • 2 tablespoons Rib Rub, recipe follows
    • BBQ Sauce, recipe follows

    Rib Rub:

    • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
    • 2 tablespoons cayenne powder "wow", really? I cut this down to 1 Tablespoon
    • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
    • 2 tablespoons onion powder
    • 2 tablespoons white pepper
    • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
    • 1 tablespoon dry mustard, such as Coleman's 
    • 1 tablespoon course black pepper
    • 5 teaspoons seafood seasoning, such as Old Bay
    • 1 teaspoon ginger powder
    With a wooden spoon, blend the brown sugar, cayenne, garlic powder, onion powder, white pepper, salt, dry mustard, black pepper, seafood seasoning and ginger powder until mixed. Then bag until usage. Yield: 1 quart.

    • 1 cup soy sauce
    • 1 cup Worcestershire sauce

    BBQ Sauce:

    • 3 cups ketchup
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • 1 cup rice wine vinegar Substituted with Cider Vinegar
    • 1/2 cup stone ground mustard We substituted with yellow mustard
    • 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
    • 2 tablespoons cayenne pepper I say again, "wow", really?   I cut this down to 1 Tablespoon
    • 1 tablespoon sea salt
    In a bowl, whisk together the ketchup, sugar, vinegar, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne and salt in a saucepan over low heat. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes to blend flavors. Remove from the heat and hold until using. Yield: 1/3 gallon.


    Prepare a smoker to high heat, 450 degrees F.

    To prepare the ribs, remove the silver skin from the back or under rib side. Mix the soy and Worcestershire sauces together. Then on a baking sheet or pan, mop on the basting liquid and sprinkle with the Rib Rub. We used about half of the Rub for 3 racks of ribs. After basting and seasoning, place the ribs on the rack of the smoker and cook for 1 hour. Mop or baste twice during cooking. I basted 3 times during the smoke

    Once the ribs have cooked for 1 hour, glaze with BBQ Sauce and finish for a final 10 minutes to allow the sauce to glaze the ribs. Serve and enjoy.

    Cook's Note: Ribs may require additional cooking time due to size and tenderness.

    My results and thoughts.

    Since I was worried about the outcome and fearful that dinner would be ruined, I prepped the trimmings in my usual rub recipe and foiled after 30 minutes, sadly those burnt up because of too much sugar and the high heat, the foil did not help, however the racks were fine.

    I got the smoker up to 450° and had a nice bed of coals and threw on the ribs, man... Frank was screaming... hissing and popping all over and it was impossible to stand in front of the smoker due to the heat.

    I had a bit of a scare when  I seen what I thought at first was a ton of smoke billowing out of everywhere, so I ran over and opened the firebox door and inspected the fire, it was a clean fire. Then I opened the smoke chamber to see what was up... it was steam, there was not much of a smoke smell at all, wow was I relieved.

    I sure am not used to doing Ribs in under 90 minutes.

    The racks got a nice little char from the Worcestershire and soy sauce and smelled wonderful when mopped. I would definitely not recommend this fast and hot if using a high sugar rub.

    I was completely shocked, with the results.

    Lets break it down.

    The ribs

    The ribs had a nice MEATY density like a tender steak, very moist and extremely tender and stayed in tact when eating. There was a bit of a smoke ring with a hint of smoke flavor and a nice thin crust that gave the ribs an incredible texture as well as flavor. It was nice to eat a rib that was like eating meat.

    The rub.

    The rub was good and although we cut the cayenne in half it was a bit spicy for most folks. We only used half of the rub mix for the 3 racks.


    Well... you cant get any simpler than equal parts Worcestershire sauce and soy sauce. The mop was perfect for high heat it caramelized beautifully, with the little bit of sugar in the rub and mop, it did not char too much, just enough. It really gave it another depth of flavor.

    I guess the proper way to describe it was that it gave another layer of flavor deeper in the meat. I would suggest mopping after the first 30, then at 50. I mopped 3 times 20/30/50.


    This was really good, pretty hard to describe but it was sort of a cross between a sort of sweet but vinegary base with an underling hint of mustard. Although I tweaked the recipe, this sauce was phenomenal. I was a bit concerned with the cayenne and glad I cut back on the cayenne.

    The sauce is perfect for someone that likes heat (even with my tweaks), but next time the Cayenne will be cut to a light teaspoon in the rub and in the sauce.

    Other things to consider

    Remove everything from under the smoker...yes I had a fire.

    Move the smoker further away from the fence, melted my rope light.

    Keep a spray bottle of water handy.

    Make a wire rack with a lip in the front to keep coals from falling out.

    Make a better insulated handle or thermal shield.. handle was too hot to touch without gloves.

    Here's what I suggest as a starting point for the recipe.

    Rib Rub:

    • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
    • 1 teaspoon cayenne powder
    • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
    • 2 tablespoons onion powder
    • 1 tablespoons white pepper
    • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
    • 1 tablespoon dry mustard, such as Coleman's 
    • 1 tablespoon course black pepper
    • 5 teaspoons seafood seasoning, such as Old Bay
    • 1 teaspoon ginger powder
    Mop (The mop is thin, so for three racks 1 cup total should be enough).
    • 1/2 cup soy sauce
    • 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce

    BBQ Sauce:

    • 3 cups ketchup
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • 1 cup rice wine vinegar OK to substitute with Cider Vinegar
    • 1/2 cup stone ground mustard OK to substitute with yellow mustard
    • 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
    • 1 teaspoon cayenne powder
    • 1 tablespoon sea salt

    Pictures are posted below.
    Now before everyone panics when they see what appears to be a cloud of smoke IT'S NOT SMOKE!.
    It is steam there was almost no smoke at all during this cook. The fire was burning very hot and very clean.

    • Frank nearly warmed up.

    • My lovely assistant Mopping the ribs.

    • Applying the rub (Lightly)

    • Frank at 450° and ready to go.

    • The left side was a bit hotter.

    • On the Pit at 450° mopped and rubbed.

    • Looking good, ready for the first Mop.

    • I panicked when I saw the smoke.

    • I decided to open up the cooking chamber to see what was going on, whoa!. Hmmm! no burning eyes, no smokey smell, what gives?

    • I figured I 'd better check the fire, Hmmm fire is burning hot and clean. After checking it out a bit and swallowing my heart back down I noticed the top of the cooking chamber lid was saturated and dripping wet. So I came to the conclusion that it was steam so I'm safe.


    • Now before any one panicks, the following pictures are not of smoke... it is STEAM! After the steam escapes I am ready to setup the glaze.







    • The little bit of char from the mop added a very nice layer of flavor.
    • Plating with some corn and a bit of vegetable beef stew.

    • Lets have a closer look.

    No, No! not the stew... the ribs MAN, C'mon!... lets try that again.

    Yeah! that's better.

    Closing Notes:

    • Cooking at these temps can be a bit humbling, there's no room for mistakes or carelessness.
    • It's nice to know that I can grab some ribs on the way home from work and have a rib dinner in about 90 minutes.
    • I really think that most folks will like these If they are willing to give it a shot.
    • As a 3-2-1 Low and slow subscriber, it's hard to wrap my head around this "Broil" type of smoking.
    • Were these the best ribs I ever had? I won't answer that because I hear that expression way too much But...
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2013
    haughtcm likes this.
  2. jds22

    jds22 Smoke Blower

    Wow, thanks for the detailed post. My electric smoker won't get that hot by my grill can. I might have to give these a try.
  3. dewetha

    dewetha Smoking Fanatic

    excellent write up. i think you hit the nail on the head a few times.

    room for error. i cooked at high temps for decades. the different between done and Chinese take out is mere minutes. where as ribs can have a nice 15-20 min window where most would still eat them.

    high temps cooking has it's place. the right tool for the right job. this is a handy recipe and technique that i will store away for those times when a quick meal is needed.
  4. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thanks a million for that post!! I saw that show and was wondering about the method. I agree, Robert was a little harsh with the guy, but the guy really was a little bullheaded. Hated the way they redecorated the restaurant.
  5. jarjarchef

    jarjarchef Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Great job.  will have to try them some time.

    I have had others I work with that have worked with Irvine. All they say is he is intense!!!!!!
  6. Man those look awesome! Thanks for the detailed technique and recipes (yep I like the lesser cayenne).

    My MES won't get that hot, but I'm working on getting a propane smoker in the not too distant future. 
  7. dewetha

    dewetha Smoking Fanatic

    depending on the propane unit, my Master Built XL will not get to 400. Maybe because the mods I made but something to think about and maybe poll some propane owners
  8. great detail - nice to see positive results... Good job going at it w/ an open mind and trying it before passing judgment.  
  9. werdwolf

    werdwolf Master of the Pit OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Nicely done and thanks for the info.

    May try this on my Weber gas grill and make a foil sheet for some wood chips.
  10. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    How was the bite texture of the ribs? I like to have a bite, but still have the rib come cleanly off of the bone with a slight tug.
  11. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Epic Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    How much Smoke did they take on? Looks like I have wait to take a trip to Philly 'cause no way a MES is getting to 450*F. Maybe a hybrid 1+ hours at 275*F in the MES then finished at 450*F...JJ
  12. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Dense but tender, you probably would not like these, because they do not come clean off the bone.

    I usually like a little tug and to come off clean from the bone but after trying these I much prefer it this way.

    This is a hard thing for low and slow folks to wrap their head around just as it was for me.

    I am receiving a lot of diverse opinions like  "NOT ME"  and "The only way is Low and Slow", "Too much char", hell Ive seen ribs completely black done low and slow. But this is all fine, that is why we are all here.

    The problem I have with fall off the bone is you have no control of what you are eating.However with that said, most folks prefer fall of the bone.

    The one thing I did not like about fall off the bone was that membrane or some weird cartilage stuff between the rib and the meat,  sometimes it would turn me off when I am eating ribs.
    If your looking for smoky ribs, this is not the way to go, however... with that said they did acquire a bit of smoke, but that was not my intentions on this cook.
  13. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    A lot of folks are proud and rightfully so and when they post a smoke they may say something like "Best Ribs Ever" , I have said this many times and that may be true but this is A subjective statement.

    What I may like,  someone else may hate.

    One of the best feelings is having, what we believe to be a perfect cook, then have friends and family compliment you like there's no tomorrow...it can actually be a bit addictive.

    Then we pop over to a forum and post our results to share with everyone, then everyone chimes in with their thoughts, some good, some bad and some neutral, however this is all good.

    When I first decided to do this it was because I was intrigued, l did not expect the results to be so satisfactory. I just kept saying there's no way these can compare to my ribs (3-2-1).

    Will this replace my 3-2-1 ribs... ABSOLUTELY NOT!  . I am not saying I like the low and slow better but what I am saying is there are a few ways to skin a cat.

    I have also been experimenting with the "weep method" with not so good results, does that mean I wont ever do ribs the "weep method"... ABSOLUTELY not.

    Look at it like this, take a steak, one time you may grill it, the next time you may sear, reverse sear, pan fry or smoke but it's still steak and your going to cook that steak based on what you want at that moment.

    The only thing I would like to say about the Fast and Hot is, if you can... give it a shot, the results may surprise you as well!

    I cook for my friends and Family not for competitions or a pretty photograph, (well I do get pretty photographs)


    If you do try this I want to point out that Running a pit at 450° can be a humbling experience, make sure your pit is clean and all objects removed from the area.
  14. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Thanks SQWIB, you always do a good job on your reviews and tests. I might just have to give these a try sometime! [​IMG]
  15. Great description.  Very informative.

    So is this the same method you talked about the other day?  http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/125193/input-needed-from-rib-gurus

    Looks like the results were pretty good.  Smoke ring seems to be very slight, but that was to be expected given the time.  Plus, from what I've heard once meats get to a certain temp they won't take on any more smoke.

    Based on your description sounds like they had more of a meaty texture.  Next time get a shot with a bite taken out of them to see how they came off the bone. :)

    I like the idea of a shorter smoke, but doubt I could get the WSM that hot.  I'm also skeptical that I could get the Weber Gas grill that hot with a foil pack of chips and not set the chips on fire or burn the ribs.  My guess is this only really works with an offset.  Anyone have any thoughts on that?
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2012
  16. that just seems crazy. im to scared to try something like that lol i like the good ole slow and steady! nice pics tho!
  17. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Leave your water pan either empty or completely out and you should have no problem hitting those temps.
  18. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Yes it is.

    Results were good but if you are looking for smoky ribs, this is not the way to go.

    Yes it was a firmer meat and did not come clean off the bone. I will do the bite pic next time I do ribs.

    I would not use chips at all if you are going to try this, these ribs would be considered broiled.

    If you do these on a grill make sure to do them indirect if possible, haven't tried them in a grill yet, but will eventually.
  19. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Low and Slow is one of the best ways to do ribs and pretty forgiving, and usually offers a great cooking experience.

    With Fast and hot you need to be right on top of it the whole time.
  20. flash

    flash Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    >>2 tablespoons cayenne pepper I say again, "wow", really? <<<

    Whimpy, whimpy, whimpy.  [​IMG]

    I will stick with my fast Butts, gonna have to think about fast ribs. Good job though.