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spare ribs

paul michael

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i smoked my first set of spare ribs last nite, smoked them for 5 hrs at 250 the meat pulled away from the bone ends about 1/2 inch; they were great but my inside temp only got to a little over 150 should i have reached 160 on them and if so how do i attain 160 after they have smoked that long? was using a materbuilt gas smoker
 

coacher72

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I would say that if you had that much pull back on the bones they were finished. I've never checked the temp. on mine, I just go by the recommended 3-2-1 method that has been fully explained here on this site.
 

rbranstner

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I'm the same way. Ribs are the ONLY meat that I don't check temps on I just do a 3-2-1 for spare ribs and 2-2-1 for baby back ribs. If you are unfamiliar with what I am talking about there is a tutorial on this but the first number is the the amount of time the ribs are on the smoker without foil (so 3 hours or 2 hours) then the second number is the amount of time the ribs are wrapped in foil on the smoker (2 hours) then the final number is the amount of time the ribs are back on the smoker without any foil to firm them up a bit (1 hour). This isn't a set in stone time line some do more or less time such as a 3 - 1.5 - 1.5. Its all about personal preference as some like their ribs more or less fall off the bone. I stick true to the 3-2-1 or 2-2-1 and they are exactly like I want them. Hope this helps.
 

jirodriguez

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It is almost impossible to get an accurate temp on ribs.... not enough meat and to much bone for that. If you what Rob said 3-2-1 or 2-2-1 you should be golden, or if you prefer not to foil you ribs keep your smoker temps lower (210°-220°) and after 5 hrs. do the bend test. The bend test is where you use a pair of tongs to pick up a rack of ribs about 1/4 - 1/3 of the way from the wider end, if the rest of the rack bends straight down 90° and you start to see the muscle fibers start to pull apart, then the ribs are done.


The bend test generally does not work well if you foil your ribs because they can get fall apart tender when you foil them, so when you go to pick them up they break in half.
 

richoso1

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It is almost impossible to get an accurate temp on ribs.... not enough meat and to much bone for that. If you what Rob said 3-2-1 or 2-2-1 you should be golden, or if you prefer not to foil you ribs keep your smoker temps lower (210°-220°) and after 5 hrs. do the bend test. The bend test is where you use a pair of tongs to pick up a rack of ribs about 1/4 - 1/3 of the way from the wider end, if the rest of the rack bends straight down 90° and you start to see the muscle fibers start to pull apart, then the ribs are done.


The bend test generally does not work well if you foil your ribs because they can get fall apart tender when you foil them, so when you go to pick them up they break in half.
Great explanation from Johnny, most of use don't take an internal temp on ribs. The 3-2-1 is preety much spot on. It's all good my friend.
 

Dutch

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I quit foiling my ribs years ago and I do the bend test like Johnny explained above. You can't really go by bone exposure (ie: pull back) cuz sometimes you'll get a rack that just doesn't pull back.
 

Bearcarver

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Thanks to Johnny again !!!

Bear
 

jirodriguez

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Thanks to Johnny again !!!

Bear
I wish I could take credit for that one Bear.... I got it from watching a Food Network special on BBQ joints. Some old guy in KC who had been working at this smoke house since he was a kid showed how it should look an camera... lol. Figured he must know what he was doing since he had been doing it for 50 yrs. and was still in business... lol.
 

Bearcarver

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Thanks to Johnny again !!!

Bear
I wish I could take credit for that one Bear.... I got it from watching a Food Network special on BBQ joints. Some old guy in KC who had been working at this smoke house since he was a kid showed how it should look an camera... lol. Figured he must know what he was doing since he had been doing it for 50 yrs. and was still in business... lol.

Doesn't matter where you got it. You brought it to the table for the rest of us.  Thanks Again.

Old guy in KC ?????  HMMmmm, I'm not saying anything!

Bear
 

bignick

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I have been doing the 3-2-1 and 2-2-1 with great results.  I'm thinking about skipping the foil next time.  Just curious, does this bend test work for BB's as well?  If not, what method would you recommend?

Thanks

Nick
 

jirodriguez

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I have been doing the 3-2-1 and 2-2-1 with great results.  I'm thinking about skipping the foil next time.  Just curious, does this bend test work for BB's as well?  If not, what method would you recommend?

Thanks

Nick
Yup... bend test works with any full rack of ribs. If you have cut the racks in half it wont work as well, but as long as they are full racks you should be fine. For baby backs you might want to check them after about 4 1/2 hrs. then decide if they need another hour or so. The other main trick is keep the temps low, around 210-220°, if you cook them to hot they will tighten up and lose a lot of moisture.
 

Bearcarver

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Where do you grab these, to see if they're done?



Bear
 

jirodriguez

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LOL... Bear.

I haven't watched Flinstones in ages.... forgot about the giant dino ribs. Now if I could only get my local market to carrt those.
 

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