Slow Cooking Pork Ribs On A Gas Grill
The benefit of low and slow cooking pork ribs on a gas grill is that a gas grill can monitor temperature for you. Low and slow works best for grilling pork ribs, and you can quickly turn up or turn down the burners to make adjustments. Using gas grills can be much easier compared to traditional charcoal grills.
How To Cook Ribs On The Grill
So youre ready to take the dive into the world of cooking ribs on the grill? I promise its easy and youll be obsessed with the finished product. Youll need about 15 minutes of prep time and an hour of cooking time. So, make sure you account for that when planning out your meal!
Youll want your grill preheating to low heat for about 15 minutes before youre ready to throw the ribs on. I use a propane grill, so 15 minutes is all I need. If youre using a charcoal grill, youll need more time for it to preheat, so plan accordingly.
You also dont want to put ribs on the grill that just came out of the fridge, or else the meat might get shocked. So, while your grill is heating up, let the ribs rest on the counter for about 15 minutes.
Video: How To Make Baby Back Ribs
To see the entire process from start to finish, be sure to watch the video in the recipe card at the bottom of this post!
While I have several rib recipes already here on the site, I figured it best to start at the beginning.
The key things to remember are start with a dry rub , baste with a mop sauce while cooking and glaze with barbecue sauce until sticky and tender.
How to remove the membrane from baby back ribs:
First, start with removing the thin, papery membrane from the back of each rack by inserting a knife under it. The best place to start is on one of the middle bones. Using a paper towel, or pliers to secure a grip and peel off the membrane. Most times your butcher has already done, this , but its good practice to make sure!
Then dry rub your ribs with spices for at least 2 hours, but overnight is best.
As they grill, brush with the mop sauce and perfection awaits. Brush again after theyre tender and cooked through with your favorite BBQ sauce, or not, and grill the ribs until the BBQ sauce is browned and bubbling, a couple minutes per side.
Remove from the grill and let the ribs rest for a few minutes, then cut the ribs. Its that easy.
Giada’s Baby Back Ribs With Spicy Plum Barbecue Sauce
Whether you’re cooking just a half rack or several at a time, the cooking time will be the same as long as the racks are in a single layer on your grill or in your oven. Ribs should be placed on the grill or in an oven meat-side up. You can tell they’re done when the meat has shrunk back from the ends of the bone to expose it and the meat’s internal temperature reaches 190 F on a digital thermometer.
What will vary by cooking method is time. Here’s how long baby back ribs need to cook depending on how you cook them.
Grilling Ribs On A Charcoal Grill
How long the ribs need on a charcoal grill depends on the temperature. Ideally, the grill will remain at a consistent temperature of 225 degrees Fahrenheit .
Keep in mind, were aiming for low and slow cooking here, and even at 225 degrees Fahrenheit, the ribs will still need at least five hours maybe even six hours to finish.
Unlike grilling steaks, the ribs internal temperature wont determine whether theyre done or not. Of course, when cooked to the safe internal temp of 190 degrees Fahrenheit, the ribs will be safe to eat however, they might not be delicious just yet.
In fact, it takes a significant amount of time for the connective tissues to break down and become tender. Most of the time, we need to cook the ribs to an internal temperature of 205 degrees Fahrenheit to become tender.
A basic timeline could look similar to this:
- Unwrapped smoking: Three hours.
- Cooking wrapped in foil: Two hours.
- Unwrapped at a high temperature: One hour.
Depending on your grill, your ribs might require slightly more or less time than mentioned above. Its essential to rotate the ribs occasionally throughout the cook you must also check on the fire, smoking wood and the water pan every 30 minutes or so.
Always test for doneness, dont go by time or temperature. Were going to cover how you can test for the perfect doneness in a minute.
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The Type Of Rib Determines Grilling Time
Most often, when people talk about ribs, they mean pork ribs. However, thats not to say that pork is the only type. Beef short ribs have become immensely popular , lamb ribs are also super delicious when cooked just right.
Were going to stick to pork ribs here, and there are three popular types to try out:
- Spareribs: Cut from the meaty lower part of the pig.
- Louis-style ribs: Same cut as spareribs, minus the breastbone and cartilage.
- Baby back ribs: These are found where the spine and ribs meet. Now, dont worry, baby back ribs arent from baby piglets they simply get their name for the shorter size than spareribs.
Although these are different types of ribs, they all require low and slow cooking to become moist, juicy, and tender.
The cut will determine the cooking time.
Due to the difference in size, cooking time will differ. Spares will need significantly longer than baby backs. For example, if you were to cook the two types at 225 degrees Fahrenheit, baby backs will need four to six hours, whereas spares need five to seven hours.
The type of grill youre using will also impact how the ribs cook and the flavors. A charcoal grill is ideal for ultra-tasty, tender ribs due to its low n slow process. But, thats not to say that its impossible to cook delicious ribs on a gas grill its very much possible, and were going to show you how.
Wrapping Your Grilled Ribs
When youve been grilling your ribs for 30 minutes, its time to check they are properly browned all over. If you notice any raw-looking spots on the surface, keep grilling the ribs for 10 to 15 minutes more.
Youll next make your ribs even more tender if you steam them with some apple juice when tightly wrapped in foil. This will lock all the juice inside the packet with the ribs. Ensure the package is as watertight as possible once youve poured in your apple juice.
Pop your tightly wrapped spare ribs back onto the grill, again using the indirect cooking zone.
Shut the lid of the grill and ratchet up the temperature to 375F. This is hot enough for the apple juice to boil, further tenderizing your ribs, while also speeding up the time it takes to cook them.
After 30 minutes of steaming in the foil, dial the heat down and start unwrapping your ribs.
You should find the ribs are flexible now and mostly cooked. If you pick up the rack from one end, you should see it drooping.
If, however, you find the ribs are still not fully browned, close the package up and grill them for 10 minutes more.
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Doneness Cues For Your Baby Back Ribs
Bone Tips: When the ribs are close to being done, the meat will begin to retract, exposing the rib tips. U Shape: Hold the ribs in the middle with tongs. When they are ready, the rack will sag in a reversed U shape. The meat may crack, too, which is a good sign. Rib Twist: Grab an exposed bone tip with your tongs and gently twist. If the bone turns easily, the ribs are done. Toothpick Test: The meat is tender when a toothpick easily penetrates the meat between the ribs.
How To Braise Ribs
Braising ribs is similar to boiling ribs except you are using a smaller quantity of more flavorful liquid. This is a preferred way to infuse your ribs with more flavor because the liquid in which they cook is usually a lot more concentrated than the liquid you use to boil ribs. Again, the skys the limit as far as what you can add to your braise for flavor, but many people simply slow-cook their ribs in barbecue sauce.
You can braise your ribs on the stovetop by bringing the barbecue sauce to a simmer over medium heat, adding the ribs, covering them, reducing the heat to low and cooking for a few hours. Check every hour or so for tenderness. This is an excellent opportunity to use a slow cooker, too.
Alternatively, you can braise them in the oven. The advantage of this is that in an oven, the heat is cooking the ribs from all sides, making for much more even cooking. As well, you can cook more ribs in the oven than you can on a stove top simply because you have more space. You also have the option of precooking a whole slab of ribs rather than cutting the rack down into smaller pieces, which can be necessary for stovetop cooking
You can either use a large roasting pan or even buy a disposable aluminum roasting pan to cook enough ribs for a crowd. Heres how:
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How To Boil Ribs
Boiling ribs or simmering ribs is one of the most straightforward was of precooking them for grilling. You can use any liquid to boil your ribs in and add as many seasonings as you want. Or, if you just want pure porky flavor, keep it simple with salt.
You can speed up this process by using a pressure cooker or Instant Pot. Remember to use the natural pressure release method to prevent shredding the meat.
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Are Grilled Ribs The Same As Bbq Ribs
You may be wondering if grilling ribs is the same as barbecuing ribs. Technically, theyre two different types of ribs using very different techniques.
Barbecue comes from the Spanish word barbacoa, which originated with the Taino people one of the native inhabitants of the Caribbean islands before the arrival of Europeans. The Tainos would cook meat over smoking embers for a long period of time so that the meat would be infused with the smoke flavor and remain tender. That technique evolved to our modern form of American barbecue, but the essential technique has remained the same: you are basically smoking the meat over a very long period of time. While you can do this at home, it is a long, labor-intensive process that can sometimes take a full 24 hours and uses a lot of fuel. As well, you need special equipment to cook BBQ ribs.
Grilling, on the other hand, means to simply cook food over flames covered with a grate. You can grill pretty much anything very quickly. The only problem is that for tougher cuts of meat, like ribs, you need long, gentle cooking to get the meat tender. The solution for most home cooks is to boil, braise, or bake the ribs first until theyre tender and then grill them to get a nice smokey char. As long as you have a grill any type of grill you can grill ribs quite easily.
How Long To Grill Ribs
Place the ribs bone side down over the direct heat and close the lid. Set your timer for 35-45 minutes.
Once the 45 minutes is up, flip the ribs so that the meat side is down. Cook them meat side down for 15 minutes.
Your total cook time is about 60 minutes.
As I said, it doesnt matter what kind of ribs you have. Baby back, St. Louis style, they all cook the same when you do it this way! Simply maintain that 350 degrees and youre good to go!
After 45 minutes to 1 hour of grilling, your ribs should be right around 203 degrees F. internal temperature. Ideally, theyll get to 205 degrees F. but 203 is perfectly acceptable!
After the 60 minutes is up, sauce the ribs again and crank the heat to high .
Char up the BBQ sauce on each side for a few minutes and double-check your temperature.
Thats how to BBQ ribs on the grill, the right way!
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The Traeger Ironwood 885 pellet grill is one of the most thorough grill version in Traegers Ironwood line. It can fit roughly eight hen upper legs, five racks of ribs or 6 pork butts in one barbecue with its big volume of 885 square inches.
Firstly, the Ironwood 885 is a smoker. Theres a collection of downdraft exhaust systems exclusive to Traeger grills, making them stick out. Old smoke can be removed from below your food and you will only taste the very best wood flavor when your food is prepared this way.
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Bbq Ribs On The Charcoal Grill
Nothing says summer like grilled BBQ ribs! These baby back ribs on the charcoal grill are simple, delicious, and sure to please a crowd with tender, fall off the bone meat and crispy charred edges.
Coming from a long line of Texans, and having lived here my whole life, I like to think I know a thing or two about barbecue. I grew up on baby back ribs and brisket cooked all day long on a smoker during my childhood weekends spent at our family lake house.
Then I married another long-standing Texan who also loves his barbecue. In case you’re confused, throwing some BBQ sauce on a piece of meat does not, in fact, make said meat ‘barbecue’. Neither does cooking meat outdoors.
Myths Busted For Grilling Bbq Ribs
False: Good barbeque takes a long time. Some will say that good barbeque takes HOURS to be smoked. I’m here to tell you that you can grill up some ribs on a weeknight in under an hour. I’m showing you how in the recipe below.
False: You can use any ‘ol pack of ribs you find at your grocer. While no one is stopping you, I would highly suggest finding hand-trimmed ribs!
False: Propane is the way to go if you want barbeque quick. This can’t be further from the truth. It only takes 15 minutes to get the charcoal going – and if you invest in that time, the flavors of your barbeque will surely stand out.
Now that I’ve set aside some myths, it is time for you to get grilling! With the warm weather springing up, everyone should be dusting off their grills! I’m sharing with you my husband and I’s favorite way to grill up a delicious weeknight meal in the same time it takes to make a casserole!
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