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How to Barbecue Ribs

Learn about the different kinds of ribs and how to barbecue them from Pork Barrel BBQ pitmasters Heath Hall and Brett Thompson in this Howcast video.


Barbecue ribs. Does it get more classic than a juicy spare rib or baby back rib? Today we're going to talk about the fundamentals of barbecue ribs.

Now, there are two types of ribs that you might find in the store. That's the baby back rib and the spare rib. The spare rib may be cut into what's called a St. Louis style cut. So if you see that it's not a baby back rib, that's a spare rib. Spare ribs tend to be more meaty, more fatty. They tend to take a little bit longer to cook. I think they're a little bit juicier when cooked properly than a spare rib.

Spare rib is going to be a little more lean. It's going to be a little bit quicker to cook. Both of them are delicious when done properly. It takes about four to six hours to properly cook a rib. Prep time on that? We like to season our ribs about 30 minutes prior to putting them on the smoker so that the rub can really start to work into the meat and really penetrate and give that juicy meat a really delicious, spicy, seasony, sweet flavor.

Now, the cooking process is pretty simple. You're going to put them on your grill or smoker for about two hours. Occasionally come out, maybe every 30 minutes and spray some apple juice on them to keep some moisture on them. At the two hour point we're going to foil them. Now, before we foil them we're going to put some honey and brown sugar on them to just add another layer of flavor. We're going to wrap them back in foil, put them back on the smoker for another two or so hours and then we're going to pull them off the smoker, take them out of the foil, put them back on the smoker, and then start putting on some of our barbecue sauce.

And you can use whatever kind of sauce you like. An original, a spicy, a sweet. Really whatever's your favorite sauce. Do this for about 30 minutes. 15 minutes into this process do a second layer of sauce. Put them back in. This will let the sauce set. Then you're ready to go. It's really that simple. Four or five hours after you start the process you're going to be dining on some really succulent, juicy ribs.

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