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Need a little help smoking ribs


Joined Sep 20, 2010
I am fairly new at smoking, and I have taught myself.  I can do a pork butt and a brisket just fine, but ribs give me issues and would like a little insight.  Most of the time when I smoke ribs they come out almost like tender jerky.  In my eyes, ribs should have that nice black coating on the outside but mine usually don't.  I did get great results once, but I was never able to duplicate it.  I have tried them the full time in smoke and other times I have wrapped them in tin foil for the last part of the smoke. 

If anyone can help me get the perfect ribs every time, that would be great.  Thanks in advance for your help.


Master of the Pit
SMF Premier Member
Joined Mar 24, 2010
While I spritzed mine for the first time last night, I won't do it again because it made the bark kind of soggy.  I, too, want my ribs to be black, and the following procedure has worked very well for me:

1) The night before, put a coat of molasses on them and plenty of rub.  I use this Memphis style rub but cut the cayenne in half: http://southernfood.about.com/od/bbqsaucemarinade/r/bl30418a.htm

2) Next day while the smoker is heating up, take them out of the fridge and apply a generous coat of brown sugar.  Just sprinkle it on and let it sit there until it has melted.

3) Sprinkle on another coat of rub.

4) Smoke them at 225* (220-240*) for 5 hours for baby backs or 6 hours for spares.  Have a water tray in there but don't open the door and don't foil or spritz.  I use Hickory, Apple, or Pecan.

They'll turn out with an awesome black bark.  They won't be "fall-off-the-bone" tender, but they won't be dry, either.

This method consistently produces some awesome ribs for me, and my guests always rave about how good they are.


Master of the Pit
Joined Jun 13, 2010
silv - give the 3-2-1 method a try that pineywoods posted...I don't think it'll disappoint you.  If you're looking for fall off the bone, go the entire 2 hours in foil, if not, maybe start with a modified 3-2-1 something like a 3-1 1/2-1  (1 1/2 or less in foil).  


Gone but not forgotten. RIP
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Mar 12, 2009

First off Welcome Silvr to SMF.  You'll like it here for there are alot of really good folks here that would just love to help you with just about anything to do with smoking. I would try that 3-2-1 method that theses other guys have told you already. I would suggest that you sign up for the E-Course it's free and it will give you the basics of smoking and some good methods to use also. So the next big thing for you to do is go out and get you something to smoke and if you happen to have any questions just post it here and we will be happy to answer them for you.

Welcome To Your New Addiction
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