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Recommendations for beef ribs (back and short)


Joined Jun 15, 2010
I've only been smoking for about 3 months.  (I tease the kids that although I quite smoking two years ago, I've started again, but this time it's much more tasty.)

I picked up a slab of beef back ribs and a slab (5 bone) of beef short ribs from the butcher this morning.  I'm planning to smoke them this weekend.  (Assuming that they thaw between now and then
)  This will be the first time I've smoked beef ribs.  I have a jar of Weber Chicago Steak Rub that DW wants me to use on the back ribs.

I'd like ideas for a rub for the short ribs.  My default would be simply salt (or maybe seasoned salt,) pepper, onion, garlic, and rosemary.  Suggestions, please.  Since I'm still pretty new at this, I don't have a stable of rubs recipes yet.  (Yes, I know that there are a lot on this site, but since the search returns about 5 gazillion hits, I have no idea which ones to even start with.)

I'd also like some suggestions on a sauce.  The family likes a sweet sauce.  Again, I don't have a stable of sauces, either, and typically use (GASP!!!) KC Masterpiece Original.  (Hangs head in shame and slinks to corner.)

The menu for this will be:

beef ribs as mentioned

probably a couple of chicken breasts (for DD, who is going through an "I don't eat red meat" phase.)

stuffed mushrooms (DW and oldest son won't let me fire up the smoker without making stuffed mushrooms

fatties (haven't settled on what yet, but so far the family favorite is cheddar and garlic, so that will probably be one of them.)

my veggie combo

My veggie combo, that I'm trying to improve, is based on zucchini, red and green bell peppers, white onion, and Roma tomatoes.  I cut the squash into spears, the bell peppers into strips, onion is sliced, and the tomatoes are cubed.  The squash, onion, and peppers are then steeped in olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic powder for an hour or so and smoked in a basket until tender (about 2 - 2.5 hours)  The tomatoes get tossed into the mix about 1-1.5 hours into the process so that they don't get over cooked.  I'm still trying to perfect this combo, since it's a bit bland.  This time I'm planning to add mushrooms, garlic cloves, and maybe artichoke hearts.  Maybe add some carrots?  Any suggestions?

ETA- I also have both hickory and apple available.  Any idea what the result would be if I mixed the two?  Good, bad, not worth doing? 70-30, 50-50?  Just stick with hickory?

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Epic Pitmaster
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Mar 12, 2009

Now everything sounds good to me so far. Now I have smoked a few of sets of beef rib and then some short ribs that were quite big. Here's some regular beef ribs

Here some short ribs that are long in size and taste toooooooo. We call theses Dino Bones
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Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
Joined Mar 30, 2007
First off, if you can find some Mojo Crillio, I would marinade the beef ribs. Really gives them a nice tang. As to the amount of time to cook them, alot like the 3-2-1 method, but I find that too long. Never more than 4 1/2 hours for my beef ribs. I don't want my steak well done, neither my beef ribs. More like a 2-2- 1/2 for me.

 You can use the foil method as shown above or just section them and throw them in an aluminum pan, spooning some Mojo over them as they cook. This method you can pretty much go by color and tell when they are done.

I always liked to buy individual 3 to 4 packs instead of racks as they tended to have more meat.

Now the Dino Bones can be smoked, but these ribs are thick enough to use a digital temp probe. I like the 135º to 140º internal temp. And don't be afraid to toss these puppies on a grill and do them that way.



Joined Jun 15, 2010
Well, I did these ribs Saturday.  The back ribs, being much thinner weren't going to take as long, so I put them on 1 hour after the short ribs were on.  The back ribs I foiled after 1.5 hours (Internal Temp was 150).  The short ribs I foiled at 2.5 hours (IT 145)  Both sets cooked for another hour in the foil.  At that point, the back ribs were at 175, so I put them in the cooler to soak.  The short ribs were around 160 at that point.  I removed them from the foil for another hour on the grill to an IT of 165.  While they were tasty, both the shorts and the backs were pretty tough.  Should I have cooked them longer?  To a higher temp?  Did I over cook them?  As you can see in the pics, the meat on the shorts had pulled back from the bone quite a way, but not so much on the back ribs.

Everything else was a big hit.  The fatty on the left is cheddar and garlic.  The one on the right is spaghetti sauce, pepperoni, and mozzarella.

The mushrooms weren't quite as good as my normal ones.  I added sausage and mozzarella to the stuffing, and while they were good, they weren't as good as my normal ones.

The veggies are zucchini, red, yellow, and green bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, garlic cloves, and artichoke hearts.  (Smoked artichoke hearts are terrific.)  The garlic didn't cook long enough to be edible, but it did add some great flavor to the veggies.  I'll have to try cooking the garlic longer next time to get it soft enough to eat.

I was also informed that the two chicken breasts were outstanding, although I didn't try any myself.


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