• 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.

Sparerib Cooking Techniques??

bugman

Newbie
3
10
Joined Mar 21, 2011
I've tried cooking spareribs a lot of ways.  I just can't seem to get them right.  Should I use foil or not?  It seems that there not moist when I don't use foil, but then again when I use foil, they don't have the smoke flavor.  Any input on how to get me to cook some moist and tender ribs would be great.  I've gotten to the point that I cook for 2 hours in smoker and then put in oven to keep them moist and to get the meat to pull away from the bones.  I've never had success in a smoker to get the bone to show like most people have pics of them.
 

bugman

Newbie
3
10
Joined Mar 21, 2011
I use a New Braunsfel Bandera smoker. It's offset vertical if that has any help on any input.Thanks
 

rbranstner

Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
5,701
37
Joined Oct 18, 2007
Do a search for the 3-2-1 method  and you will have perfect ribs. 
 

Bearcarver

SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Group Lead
37,321
10,241
Joined Sep 12, 2009
There are many ways, but I'll give you a short of the way I do Pork Spares.---3-2-1

I usually trim mine to a St Louis cut, but you don't have to.

Day before, I rub yellow mustard all over the ribs.

Then some type of rub on top of that.

Then wrap well in saran wrap, and put in fridge over night.

6 hours before eating time, I put them in my pre-heated smoker at 225˚/230˚ unwrapped for 3 hours of smoke.

I also put at least one qt of boiling water in my water pan, so I don't have to open the door to spritz the ribs.

At the end of those 3 hours, I take them out, foil them, and add a little apple juice mixed with a little BBQ sauce (only a few ounces), and put them back in.

Then at the end of 2 hours in foil, I take them out again, remove from foil, and coat them with BBQ sauce, and put them back in for one more hour. Be careful they don't fall apart & hit the ground/floor!!!

At the end of the 6 hour total, take them out carefully, take pictures, and chow down!!!!

That's about it.

Bear
 

jp61

Master of the Pit
★ Lifetime Premier ★
2,883
187
Joined Mar 6, 2011
What Bear said....works like a charm as long as you maintain the proper temps.
 

SmokinAl

SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
Staff member
Moderator
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
44,566
6,247
Joined Jun 22, 2009
Same 3-2-1 rocks!
 

smokingeagle

Smoke Blower
89
12
Joined Jun 29, 2010
Did some st.louis style this weekend for the first time using the 3-2-1 method and the family loved them. Been doing baby backs for years think i am gonna stay with st.louis style.
 

hawkiphan

Newbie
28
10
Joined May 15, 2010
I also did 2 racks of spare ribs cut down St. Louis style. I cooked them 3-2-1 and they turned out very good.
 

jirodriguez

Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
4,653
138
Joined Jun 5, 2009
3-2-1 like Bear said is the super easy no-fail method that gives great results. Once you have good fire controll and feel adventurous then try no foil but with temps between 200 & 230, you will still get a great tender, moist rib, but it will have a bit of bark on the outside - the secret is the lower temps. Then you and the family can decide what method you like best!
 

helljack6

Meat Mopper
SMF Premier Member
226
15
Joined Aug 15, 2008
Personally, i think you should decide what YOUR type of rib is first, then go from there. Everyone likes ribs cooked differently and what everyone thus far has suggested on how to cook ribs is how THEY like to eat them and not necessarily how YOU like to eat them. Answer a few questions for yourself:

1. With or without a lot of bark?

2. Fall off the bone or clean off with a little tug?

3. As is or St.Louis trimmed?

How you answer just those questions for yourself will determine if you're even going the ribs the way people have told you they cook their ribs. Here's what I would do personally so you know for yourself. Scroll down in the Pork section for my rib primer that I wrote after talking to Mike Mills about cooking baby back ribs. Apply to your spareribs question for yourself and you'll come with how you like eating ribs.

Here's the quick link to the primer: http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/forum/thread/81480/rib-primer
 
Last edited:

lspilot82

Meat Mopper
162
11
Joined Nov 30, 2009
I say try both ways...with and without foil. I personally like them both ways since both ways produce a different type of rib. Its whatever im in the mood for that day. when I 1st started it was always 321, then i tried no foil and liked that as well for a little while. Now Im back doing the 321 method....so do what you want. But i agree with everyone else that the 321 way is the easiest.
 
27
10
Joined Apr 22, 2011
I cooked for the first time today on my MES and used the 3-2-1 for spare ribs...They were fall off the bone delicious but hubby decided he prefers his with some pull on them. He didn't care for them falling off the bone. I cooked at *225....can someone please tell me how to modify for his preference? Thanks, Karen
 

SmokinAl

SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
Staff member
Moderator
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
44,566
6,247
Joined Jun 22, 2009
I cooked for the first time today on my MES and used the 3-2-1 for spare ribs...They were fall off the bone delicious but hubby decided he prefers his with some pull on them. He didn't care for them falling off the bone. I cooked at *225....can someone please tell me how to modify for his preference? Thanks, Karen

Next time try 4-1-1. This will give them some pull. If you don't like fall off the bone ribs either, then just smoke them for 6 hours straight, no foil.
 
27
10
Joined Apr 22, 2011
What is 4-1-1 please? same instructions as 3-2-1 except different times? Are these "numbers" formulas only used on Ribs? Thank you, Karen
 

Bearcarver

SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Group Lead
37,321
10,241
Joined Sep 12, 2009
What is 4-1-1 please? same instructions as 3-2-1 except different times? Are these "numbers" formulas only used on Ribs? Thank you, Karen
4 hours on rack uncovered-----1 hour in foil on rack (with or without a little bit of some kind of liquid)-----1 hour on rack uncovered again (with or without sauce).

Others numbers would fit in those same places.

That's the only time I use numbers like these---Spare Ribs--Beef Backs, Baby Backs, Country Style, etc.

Bear
 
Last edited:

jirodriguez

Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
4,653
138
Joined Jun 5, 2009
Yeah... 3-2-1 is just a guidline. Everybody adjusts the numbers to their taste and texture preferance, or just cook them at a lower temp. and leave the foil off completely.
 

smokeaddict

Fire Starter
52
10
Joined Mar 3, 2011
Bear, For us aussies, please describe St Louis style trim........is it still the normal rib, but modified by you, or the butcher ?

Thanks mate
 

Latest posts

Hot Threads

Top Bottom
  AdBlock Detected

We noticed that you're using an ad-blocker, which could block some critical website features. For the best possible site experience please take a moment to disable your AdBlocker.