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How Long to Smoke Ribs to Make Them Extremely Tender

Are you looking for some comfort food that you can enjoy with your friends and family in your backyard? Nothing beats the fragrance and aroma of smoked ribs, in that case. The best part of this dish is that it’s easy to smoke ribs even for a beginner.

This article will show you some important points about how to smoke different kinds of ribs, what you should take note of while smoking ribs, and other relevant things.

How Long You Should Smoke Ribs For

There are two main types of ribs that you can smoke – St. Louis ribs, also known as spare ribs, and baby back ribs.

While the St. Louis ribs can be seen on the pig’s belly area, the baby back ribs can be seen on the back loin region.

Many people use spare ribs for smoking because they contain a lot of fat content. So, the steps that we have mentioned here are for the spare ribs.

Here are the steps that you must take before you proceed to find how long to smoke ribs:

  • Clean the ribs properly and remove the sticky and thick membrane found on the rear of the ribs. You can use your fingers or a knife to cut this membrane off.
  • Check the pork ribs thoroughly to remove most of the significant layers of fat that you can find. If you don’t remove the fat bits in this step, the smoked pork ribs would taste chewy at the end.
  • Cover the ribs with a generous dose of dry rub at least for an hour before you start smoking or cooking them. You can tweak the ingredients of the rub to suit your tastes. However, the simple recipe is to use ¼ cup each of brown sugar & paprika, 3 tablespoons each of black pepper & coarse salt, 2 tablespoons each of garlic powder, onion powder & celery seeds, and a small pinch of cayenne pepper.
  • Leaving the dry rub on the ribs for an hour will help make the ribs flavorful and juicy.

The Process in Detail

Once you have prepped your ribs, the final step is to smoke them. If you’re wondering how long to smoke pork ribs for, here are the steps you should follow:

Set your smoker to 225 to 250 degrees F. If you want to know how long to smoke ribs at 225 degrees F, these steps will help you.

  • You can use any wood for smoking ribs, but we recommend you soak the wood chips in water for at least an hour before using them.
  • Let the ribs for about three hours. After every hour, brush the ribs with a little bit of cider vinegar, apple juice, or beer.
  • Take the ribs out of the smoker after 3 hours and apply a generous dose of a wet rub on them on the meaty side. This could be a mix of apple juice and brown sugar. You can substitute apple juice with apple cider vinegar or beer, or just about anything of your choice.
  • Wrap them well in aluminum foils. Please make sure that you seal the foil tightly to avoid moisture from escaping.
  • Now smoke the ribs again for 2 hours at 225 degrees F, if you want them to be tender and fall off the bone consistency.
  • After 2 hours, you can remove the aluminum foils. Brush another generous layer of barbecue sauce on the ribs and cook them uncovered for just half an hour. You shouldn’t cook for more than 30 minutes in this final step because the sauce might burn the ribs.
  • After two hours, please take out the ribs and allow them to cool for 5 to 10 minutes before you enjoy them.

How Long to Smoke Baby Back Ribs?

The process of smoking baby back ribs is almost similar to the process of smoking spare ribs.

The only difference is that when the smoker is set to 225 degrees F, it’s enough to smoke these back ribs for two hours instead of three.

How Long to Smoke Ribs at 300 Degrees F?

Some people often wonder how long it would take them to smoke ribs at 300 degrees F. You can do it if you don’t have enough time for slow-smoking.

Set the grill to a temperature of 300 degrees F and prepare the ribs for an indirect cooking process. You can use any type of wood in this process, to get the best results.

Are you wondering how long does it take to smoke ribs at 300 degrees F? It takes just about 2.5 hours for the same.

After 2.5 hours, you can remove the ribs and seal them with aluminum foils before pouring some apple juice and brown sugar on them. Cook for about 90 minutes at 300 degrees F.

After 90 minutes, brush a layer of barbecue sauce on the ribs and grill them uncovered for about 15 minutes. After switching off the grill, allow the ribs to cool down for 10 minutes before you taste them.

Final Thoughts

The answer to the question, how long to smoke ribs, depends on many factors that include the size of the type of ribs you use and the appliance you use for cooking. Always have a meat thermometer, regardless of the smoking process you choose.

We want to conclude by giving you two important tips for smoking ribs in the right consistency. Firstly, you need to stop smoking when the thickest part of the ribs reaches 160 degrees F.

Secondly, use at least 2 to 3 tablespoons of dry rub for one pound of meat on the ribs for them to turn out to be juicy and tender after the cooking process.