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Ribs day before vs morning of?

Primerib

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Hi all, I’ve been lurking for years and have gleaned some great advice but if anybody is feeling patient I could sure use some validation and help with a plan. I know this subject has been covered plenty of times before but I’m wondering about some specifics.

Planning on doing a few racks of babyback ribs as my dish-to-pass for a small grillout with co-workers. The party isn’t until Saturday afternoon. My debate is getting up early the same day to do them vs. using my leisurely day off tomorrow to get them done with no pressure, wrapping them with foil and somehow reheating them at the party.

I’m leaning towards the pre-cook (with 3-2-1 or 2-2-1 method as I’ve used before with good results) but very concerned about the reheat the next day. I want them to be the best ribs they can be (reheated) and especially don’t want to dry them out.

Considering taking them out of fridge an hour or two before the party to come to room temp, heating them up on grill still in foil (I prefer to serve them naked with sauce on the side).

Or is this stupid? Just want to do what I can to keep them moist. Even considering some sort of crockpot reheat and bringing them to the party that way. I appreciate any advice you can give me.

Sincerely,
Overthinking Ribs

P.S. just to clarify, because I know this might be suggested, in this limited timeframe I don’t have access to a vacuum sealer :(
 

SonnyE

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Well, look at your ribs from a different angle.
Do you like them reheated? Mine are just as good when reheated, though I usually nuke them in the microwave.
What would happen if you shared reheated ribs?
 

Chrisjo

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If the goal is 100% absolute best possible ribs, cook them the day of. Realistically, they’re about 90% as good reheated the second day, so I wouldn’t sweat it. I usually reheat, foiled, in the oven at 250 and check about 45 mins or so to see how they’re doing.
 

tropics

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Cook them ahead of time so you can enjoy the party
Richie
 

CharlotteLovesFood

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I think after you've done them, the smokers already done it's thing...so however you choose to reheat they will still technically be smoked babybacks. After reheating If you are concerned about the bark or for entertaining purposes you could always toss them over hot coals...I haven't tried it but I probably would but I'll try anything once :rolleyes::D

P.S. I have reheated pulled pork both in the oven and microwave with bbq sauce/apple juice/coke whatever I have to hand...and I never noticed the different.
I don't have a vacuum seal either but I reheated lamb slices with a little olive oil in a Zip lock bag...just squeeze all the air out and simmer away! ;)

Like others said just enjoy
Happy smoking!
Charlotte
 

Jiffylush

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Given the relatively short cook time I generally eat ribs the same day. In fact we will have ribs for dinner while the boston butt is still in the smoker.

That being said I think they heat up really well, and if you don't mind that you may not have crispy bits I'd say do what is easiest for you.
 

phatbac

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I have done many ribs the day (or even weekend before) a party and then cut them into small racks (2 bones each) and then put them in a crock pot on low heat and let them heat up that way or put in a foil pan covered in foil and stick in the oven at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Drying ut has never been a problem either way. they are pork ribs they are fatty and juicy, you will be fine....best of luck!

Happy Smoking,
phatbac (Aaron)
 

noboundaries

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Planning on doing a few racks of babyback ribs as my dish-to-pass for a small grillout with co-workers. The party isn’t until Saturday afternoon. My debate is getting up early the same day to do them vs. using my leisurely day off tomorrow to get them done with no pressure, wrapping them with foil and somehow reheating them at the party.
Two points come mind from many, many work potlucks and parties. 1st: I call anything that takes 6 hours or less, once loaded on the smoker, a "quick smoke." BB's fit that description. Keep in mind how long it takes to prep, fire, and pre-heat your smoker. If you can easily do it the day of the smoke, that would be the first choice based upon what you wrote above. But, see point 2.

2nd: unless your co-workers are meat smokers, they'll love ANYTHING that was actually smoked. It won't matter when you smoked it or how it was reheated. It will taste as good or better than anything they get at a restaurant and you'll be heaped with praise and adoration. BUT..........if there are fellow meat smokers at the party, stick with the first point.
 

SonnyE

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Ya know, if any picky-poop's challenge your ribs, just tell the dissenter they are your:
Very Special Twice Baked Smoked Ribs.
A very old Family Recipe from the 1700's...

That'll shut them up! o_O:D
 

zwiller

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I pretty much smoke everything ahead and serve another day and ribs are no exception. I will also say a few guys including myself think that resting smoked stuff is actually better than eating same day. For my ribs I am still tinkering but would suggest 4-2* leave in foil no sauce. Sauce, sear, and serve when ready.

*Edit: make that maybe 3-2 for BB, sorry
 
Last edited:

Primerib

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Thanks for the good suggestions, guys! And for not getting mad that I asked a question that’s already been asked a zillion times ;) They’re on the smoker as we speak. I’ll see what kind of grillspace is available at the party tomorrow but will probably do a foil warmup either on the grill or in the oven.

I’m pretty new to the smoking hobby, the past few years have done ribs a couple times a year for, say, hunting season and Christmas, but it’s always a little more nerve wracking cooking for people who aren’t family or close friends.

Btw my wife ordered me some pimento chips from a company out of Minnetonka, MN so I’m anxiously awaiting those to see what sort of jerk-inspired meat I can make. I’ve only had real jerk (smoked with the right blend of spices) a couple of times in my life, but it’s always been out of this world.
 

SonnyE

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What day is this?
Every day is a new one. So starting learning as I get out of bed.
First thing is where's the bathroom....

Have a great Party!
 

motolife313

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Personally I like meat the next day. It's like spaghetti, way better the next day! The guy that runs that big open pit smokes his brisket in a smoker then cools it down and serves the next day.
 

motolife313

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Also I've found if I get my ribs little under, like when they don't pull off the bone nice you can reheat them in the oven next day for 20 minutes at 300 or so and they come out super good.
 

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