Smoked Beef Short Ribs

Smoked Beef Short Ribs

There’s nothing better than smoked beef short ribs on a menu at a summer party. These ribs taste genuinely divine when seasoned with the right spices and served with your favorite sauce.

Moreover, this recipe is super easy! The ribs melt in your mouth and give you a chance to enjoy a unique smokey flavor that will impress your guests as well.

The total cooking time of smoked beef short ribs is eight hours and requires only some basic ingredients such as salt, pepper, and garlic powder. So, if you have never tried or served smoke beef short ribs before, today is the right time to experience this mouth-watering food.

Moreover, per our recommendation, serve this meaty delight with smoked asparagus or smoked eggs to experience a complete meal. Also, if you haven’t smoked meat before, you might want to check our Smoked Chicken Breast recipe to get detailed instructions.

How to Make Smoked Beef Short Ribs

Below is everything you’ll need to know to make the perfect smoked beef short ribs on your pellet grill or charcoal smoker. The process will require some patience and time, but you will eventually love the results.

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 8 hours
  • Resting Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 8 hours 45 mins
  • Cook Temperature: 205ºF and 225ºF
  • Wood Flavor: Cherry or Oak
  • Servings: 4 people

Required Tools

  • Your preference of smoker (I recommend a pellet smoker)
  • Commercial grade tinfoil
  • Temperature probe (meat thermometer)


  • 2 pounds beef ribs
  • 2 tablespoons brown mustard
  • Kosher Salt
  • Pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup beef stock or broth

Cooking Instructions

  1. Use good cherry woods or oak hardwood to preheat the smoker.
  2. Allow the smoker’s temperature to reach 225ºF.
  3. Meanwhile, prepare the beef ribs by starting with trimming the silver skin and fat cap on the meat’s top side.
  4. Slather all sides of your beef ribs with some brown mustard.
  5. Start seasoning these beef ribs with garlic powder, kosher salt, and black pepper.
  6. Once done, place ribs on your chosen smoker, cover it with the lid, and let it smoke for at least three hours.
  7. After a 3 hour wait, open the lid and spray some beef stock over the beef ribs.
  8. Continue with spritzing and slow smoking until your smoked beef short ribs show a final internal temperature between 205 to 210ºF.
  9. Also, if the thermometer probe looks like it’s sliding in your beef rib, it is the right time to end the cooking process.
  10. Once you are satisfied, remove the smoking beef short ribs from your smoker and cover the meat with aluminum foil.
  11. Let the smoked beef short ribs rest for at least 30 minutes before you serve them to your family or guests.

BBQ Hero Tip: Try adding some fresh herbs when you season the smoked beef short ribs. It’ll add some great flavors! We love fresh thyme, but rosemary is a close second!

Detailed Cooking Instructions

Use Hardwood to Preheat the Smoker

You can use oak or cherry hardwood to smoke beef short ribs. Moreover, make sure the temperature of the smoker reaches 225ºF before you start your cooking. In our experience, a beef rib needs a higher temperature to cook correctly than other smoked meat.

Prepare and Season the Ribs

Get yourself well-marbled meat for this beef short ribs recipe. Moreover, make sure to trim the ribs and season them properly with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Also, slather lots of brown mustard to give the dish some rich flavor.

We have used simple seasoning so you can enjoy the natural taste of beef. Don’t overpower these beef short ribs recipe with seasoning. That’s our only best tip for you.

Smoke for 3 Hours

Place the ribs in your preheated smoker and cover them with a lid. This step is quite crucial and requires time so that your ribs end up tasting smokey and rich.

Cook While Spritzing With Beef Stock

Now add stock after every hour in the smoker while the ribs are cooking at their own pace. You need to slow cook this dish until the internal temperature reaches between 205ºF and 210ºF and the ribs are super soft.

The whole cooking time takes about 7 to 8 hours. However, the meat’s thickness and the temperature’s consistency also play a significant role in this recipe.

Plate Ribs Out!

Once you are satisfied with your cooked dish, plate the smoking beef ribs out on a dish and cover them with foil. You should let the beef ribs rest for at least 30 minutes so it can absorb all the juices and looks perfect for your guests.

BBQ Hero Tip: Smoked beef short ribs can be very tough to cook at times. So, you need to make sure that they are fully cooked at the right temperature and for the proper time. Don’t compromise on these factors.

Frequently Asked Questions

The questions below will help you get a better understanding of this recipe.

How to Identify Beef Short Ribs?

If you haven’t cooked ribs before, you may not have any idea about this meat. Short ribs are tiny sections of cow’s ribs and usually have a length of three to six inches. They are also quite meaty, which makes them quite popular among meat lovers.

What Is the Right Way to Select the Best Beef Short Ribs?

To start, you want to make sure you buy the right beef short ribs. Be selective about what you spend money on, as the quality of beef short ribs is uneven.

When in the meat cooler, don’t just grab the first rib you see but be selective. In large chain stores, beef back ribs have been robbed of a lot of meat.

You will see that the pork ribs between the individual bones have been cut and scraped off, leaving you with very little meat. And some are worse than others.

Look for the meatiest slab you can find. Then, ring the bell and talk to the butcher. They may provide you with something better than what you saw in the case.

Alternatively, you may have better luck in your local butcher shop. Tell your butcher you are smoking beef ribs, and you want a good slab.

BBQ Hero Tip: It’s important to note that you can keep your beef short ribs in the fridge after purchase, but only for 3 to 5 days.

What Are the Nutrition Calories of these Smoked Beef Short Ribs?

This smoked beef ribs recipe has a total of 301 kcal calories. The wholesome dish is rich in protein, fat, potassium, carbohydrates, and sodium. Besides, there is some amount of Vitamin C and Vitamin A in a certain quality.

How Can You Make Tough Beef Short Ribs Tender and Soft?

Over-cooked smoke beef short ribs can become too tough and hard to eat. But you can get rid of this cooking disaster by preparing a magical sauce.

Take a bowl and mix barbecue sauce and apple cider vinegar in equal quantities. Once ready, coat the beef short ribs with this paste and wrap them with aluminum foil.

Place the ribs in the oven for an hour or so at a 300ºF temperature. Once they are soft enough, put the short ribs on a plate and enjoy with your favorite side dish.

Are Smoked Beef Short Ribs Expensive?

The price of short ribs depends on the type of beef, where you buy them from, and where you live. On average, though, plan to spend anywhere between $4 and $7 per pound at your local grocer. They are pretty inexpensive, so you won’t hurt your pocket while preparing smoked beef short ribs.

Why Should I Wrap Beef Short Ribs?

Wrapping your smoked beef short ribs with foil will restrict the amount of smoke on the meat’s surface. This allows the final product to have better color and rich beef flavor. Moreover, it can also increase moisture and accelerate cooking time.

Wrap the ribs for 30 minutes after the cooking has ended. Or you can also turn off the heat when the internal temperature of the meat has reached between 150-160 degrees.

Should You Cook Smoked Beef Short Ribs Bone Side Up or Down?

Ribs are gristly and tough, so they require slow cooking and a long time to become tender and soft. It is why you place your ribs in a way that the boney side always faces down and over indirect heat. This step is imperative to avoid the meaty layer from overcooking during this long process.

Give this Smoked Beef Ribs Recipe a Try!

We hope the above recipe and details will help you prepare the best and delicious smoked beef short ribs you’ve had your whole life. This dish is super easy to make, and with very few ingredients, you get a meal worth an effort. Besides, smoking beef short ribs doesn’t require any specific technique, so you don’t even have to be a professional to ace this recipe.

Give this a try, and we are sure you would love to make it again. In addition, if you want to give your taste buds a treat, enjoy the smoked beef short ribs with a fruity summer drink or a cold beer.

Moreover, if you like how the smoked beef short ribs turned out, don’t forget to let us know in the comments below.