Spare Rib Question

  • Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.
SMF is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.


Fire Starter
Original poster
Oct 15, 2006
Hey Y'all

I will be smoking a rack of spare ribs tomorrow, this will be my fifth or sixth attempt with varying results. I've read the 3-2-1 method, and I've also seen people talking about taking the ribs off the smoker and wrapping in foil and then placing them in a towel stuffed cooler for an hour.

What is the purpose of placing them in the cooler? If you use the cooler do you cook the ribs differently then in the 3-2-1 method?

I will be using Pecan and some lump charcoal. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

I do that with my pork butts and briskets, but when I 3-2-1 my ribs I eat em! You pulled them out of the foil to firm them up on the smoker, by rewrapping and putting in cooler, they might get too tender and mushy…IMHO
Depends on the type of ribs im cooking on the 3-2-1. Usually on baby backs I do a 2-1-1 and let them set open for 30 min before I cut them
Eddie, look to the left under smoking links and there is one named 3-2-1 method. Jeff does a wonderful job of explaining how it is used. I've followed his directions and have turned out some really good ribs. Give it a shot.

As said above, towel wrapped coolering is for butts and briskets. I serve the ribs right out of the smoker at the end of the last segment. Spares and babies have slightly different timings. 3-2-1 for spares and I use 2-1.5-.75 for babies. You will discover what your smoker does best, and the best part is that you always get to eat your experiments. Remember that the worst day smoking is better than the best day working.

Take care, have fun, and do good!



BTW - Who's your driver? Mine is #48.
Guess I got confused between putting meat in the cooler and cooking ribs. I've read sooo many posts on here, excellent site. I've read Jeff's 3-2-1 article and I'm trying it now. Ribs have been on for bout 45 minutes now. Thanks for the feedback everyone!!!

Meowy - I'm driver 8 fan and still wishing the 3 was still making laps. And of course it's always fun to see Schrader out there as well
Cool, you do delivery??? I'll take 3 pastami's... 5 lb's each of your sausage's, and anything else that's on special... Thanks!!! is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.