Smoked beef ribs are a delicious and flavorful dish that is perfect for any barbecue or summer gathering. Whether you’re looking for a new recipe to impress your friends and family, or simply want to try something new, this recipe is a perfect choice.
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Cooking smoked beef ribs may seem intimidating, but with the right equipment and a bit of patience, you’ll be able to create a mouthwatering meal that everyone will love.
The key to success is having a good pellet smoker, a set of BBQ tongs, a sharp knife, and a meat thermometer. With these tools in hand, you’ll be able to achieve the perfect temperature, cook the ribs to tender perfection, and slice them with ease.
Whether you’re a seasoned pitmaster or a beginner, this recipe is sure to become a staple in your cooking repertoire.
Overview: Smoked Beef Ribs
This smoked beef ribs recipe is a delicious way to enjoy a classic barbecue dish. Slow-smoked to perfection, these ribs are juicy, tender smoked beef ribs, and full of flavor.
Here’s an overview of the most important information you need to know to make these ribs successfully, including details on preparation, cooking time and temperature, and resting.
- Preheat pellet smoker to 250°F using hickory or oak wood
- Slather ribs in Dijon mustard (bonus points if you have a spicy Dijon with horseradish) and season with equal parts garlic powder, salt or kosher salt, and black pepper
- Smoke ribs for 3 hours, then spritz with vinegar and hot sauce mixture every hour until they reach an internal temperature of 203°F (8-10 hours total smoking time)
- Wrap in butcher paper and rest in an insulated cooler for 1 hour
- Slice and serve with desired sides.
What Are Beef Ribs?
Beef ribs are a cut of meat that comes from the beef rib section of a cow. This cut is located along the back of the animal and includes the ribs closest to the spine, which are known as “plate ribs,” and the ribs further down, which are known as “beef short ribs.” There are another type of ribs called “chuck ribs”.
Beef ribs are different from other cuts of beef in that they contain a lot of connective tissue and fat, which can make them tough if not cooked properly. However, when cooked low and slow, this fat and connective tissue breaks down and melts into the meat, creating a rich and tender dish.
To best prepare beef ribs, it is recommended to remove the membrane from the back of the ribs, as this can cause the ribs to be tough. The ribs should then be seasoned and slow-smoked at a low temperature until they reach an internal temperature of 203°F. This allows the flavors to fully develop and the meat to become tender and juicy. It is almost similar to beef brisket.
How To Make Smoked Beef Ribs
- Preheat the Pellet Smoker
In this step, you need to preheat your pellet smoker to 250°F (121°C) using hardwood pellets like hickory or oak. Using hardwood is ideal because it will provide a deep smoke flavor that will infuse into the ribs while they cook. You want to make sure your smoker is fully preheated before you add the ribs, so the cooking process can start right away.
- Remove the Membrane
Before you season the ribs, you need to remove the membrane from the back of the beef ribs. This is an important step because if you don’t remove the membrane, it will not cook properly and could cause the ribs to be tough and chewy.
To remove the membrane, use a knife to loosen one end of it, and then use a paper towel to grip it and pull it off the ribs.
- Make Beef Ribs Rub
Mix together equal parts garlic powder, salt, and black pepper in a bowl. This mixture will be used to season the ribs and give them flavor. Once the ingredients are combined, set the bowl aside until you are ready to rub the mixture onto the ribs.
- Season The Ribs
First, slather the ribs in Dijon mustard. This will help the spices stick to the ribs and will also add a tangy flavor. Once you have slathered the ribs in mustard, season them generously with the same seasoning blend you’ve mixed.
Rub the blend on both sides of the ribs, making sure to cover them thoroughly. Make sure to get the seasoning into all the nooks and crannies of the ribs.
- Smoke the Ribs
In this step, you will place the seasoned and slathered ribs in the smoker that you preheated earlier. You will need to leave the ribs in the smoker for 3 hours with the lid closed. This will allow the smoke to infuse into the meat and cook the ribs slowly and evenly.
- Prepare the Spritzing Liquid
In this step, you will prepare the spritzing liquid by mixing 1 cup of white vinegar and ¼ cup of hot sauce in a small bowl. This liquid will be used to add moisture to the ribs while they are smoking, which will help prevent them from drying out.
Don’t worry, the hot sauce won’t make your ribs too spicy!
- Spritz the Ribs Every Hour
After the first 3 hours of smoking the ribs, start spritzing them with the spritzing liquid every hour until they reach an internal temperature of 203°F (95°C). This will take anywhere from 5-7 hours of additional smoking time, depending on the size of your ribs. Spritzing the ribs will help keep them moist and will also add additional flavor.
- Let The Ribs Rest For 1 Hour
Once the ribs have reached an internal temperature of 203°F, remove them from the smoker and wrap them in butcher paper. Butcher paper is a type of wrapping paper that is commonly used for smoking meats because it allows the meat to breathe, which helps to maintain its moisture and tenderness.
Once the ribs are wrapped, place them in an insulated cooler and let them rest for an hour. This will allow the juices to redistribute, making the ribs even more tender and flavorful.
- Slice and Serve
Finally, it’s time to slice and serve the smoked beef ribs! You can serve them with your favorite sides, such as coleslaw, baked beans, or cornbread.
Whether you’re cooking for a family dinner or hosting a BBQ, these smoked beef ribs are sure to be a hit. So, sit back, relax, and enjoy your delicious, slow-smoked beef ribs!
Tips For Making The Best Smoked Beef Ribs
If you’re new to smoking beef ribs, there are a few key tips to keep in mind to ensure that your ribs turn out perfectly tender and flavorful.
When smoking beef ribs, it’s important to use the right type of wood pellets. Hardwoods, such as hickory or oak, work well because they provide a strong, smoky flavor. Avoid using softwoods, such as pine or cedar, as they can have a bitter taste.
Don’t skimp on the seasonings! Rub the mixture onto both sides of the ribs, making sure to cover them thoroughly. This will ensure that the ribs have plenty of flavors.
Monitor the Internal Temperature
Use a meat thermometer to monitor the internal temperature of the ribs as they smoke. Once the internal temperature reaches 203°F, it’s time to remove the ribs from the smoker. Overcooking the ribs can make them tough, so make sure to keep an eye on the temperature.
Rest Before Serving
After removing the ribs from the smoker, wrap them in butcher paper or waxless parchment paper and let them rest in an insulated cooler for at least an hour. This allows the juices to redistribute and the meat to become even more tender and flavorful.
Best Beer To Pair With Smoked Beef Ribs
Pairing the right beer with your smoked beef ribs can make all the difference, adding an extra layer of flavor and enhancing the overall dining experience. Whether you prefer hoppy IPAs, rich stouts, or nutty brown ales, there is a beer out there that will perfectly complement your delicious beef ribs.
A hoppy India Pale Ale (IPA) is a great match for smoky and slightly spicy beef ribs. The bitterness of the beer cuts through the richness of the meat and provides a refreshing contrast to the heat from the spices.
A dark and roasty stout is a fantastic pairing for beef ribs. The maltiness of the beer provides a sweet and smooth contrast to the smoky flavors of the ribs, and the full-bodied character of the beer makes it a great match for hearty meat.
A nutty and malty brown ale is a perfect match for smoked beef ribs. The toasty, caramel-like flavors in the beer complement the smoky, savory flavors of the ribs, and the medium-bodied character of the ale provides a great balance to the hearty meat. The smooth finish of a brown ale makes it an ideal beer to pair with a hearty and flavorful dish like beef ribs.
Smoked Beef Ribs
- Liquid spray bottle
- Preheat your pellet smoker to 250°F using a hardwood like hickory or oak
- Remove the membrane from the rack of beef ribs.
- Mix together equal parts garlic powder salt, and black pepper in a bowl.
- Rub the mixture onto both sides of the ribs, making sure to cover them thoroughly.
- Slather the ribs in Dijon mustard, then season generously
- Place the ribs in the smoker for 3 hours with the lid closed
- Prepare the spritzing liquid by mixing 1 cup white vinegar and ¼ cup hot sauce
- After the 3 hours of uninterrupted smoking, start spritzing the beef ribs with the spritzing liquid every hour until they reach an internal temperature of 203°F (5-7 hours)
- Once the ribs have reached an internal temperature of 203°F, remove them from the smoker, wrap them in butcher paper, and let them rest in an insulated cooler for an hour
- Slice and serve the smoked beef ribs with your favorite barbecue sauce, sides and enjoy!
Smoked Beef Ribs FAQs
The best wood for smoking beef ribs is hickory or oak. These woods have a strong, smoky flavor that complements the taste of the beef ribs.
Beef ribs should be smoked at 250°F in a pellet smoker for 8-10 hours.
The internal temperature you should aim for when cooking the beef ribs is 203°F.
Yes! The spritzing liquid is used to keep the beef ribs moist and add extra flavor. In this recipe, we use white vinegar, apple cider vinegar can be used and hot sauce for the spritzing liquid. Spray it on the ribs every hour throughout the smoking process.
You should wrap the beef ribs in butcher paper or unwaxed parchment paper and let them rest in an insulated cooler for an hour after cooking. Letting the beef ribs rest in an insulated cooler allows the flavors to settle and the meat to become tender.
The smoked beef ribs can be served with your favorite sides, such as corn on the cob, baked beans, or coleslaw.