221 Back Ribs a little tough

Discussion in 'Pork' started by wayoung, Sep 17, 2016.

  1. wayoung

    wayoung Fire Starter


    I'm pretty hit and miss with ribs. I don't do them a lot because of this. The first time I tried theu were superbky flavoured rubber. The second time they were excellent but this weekend I did them again and, while not rubber, they were tougher than I would like.

    I used back ribs, dry rub for 24 hours before cooking, theb 221 with my amaze for the initial 2. Apple juice squirted on them and on the botrom of the foil for the second two, then the juices in the foil plus some apple juice for the final one. All at 225.

    Any suggestions to improve the results? Looking for more tender.
  2. b-one

    b-one Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Sounds easy cook them longer. Toothpick test toothpick should slide in easy. The bend test works great as well pick the rack up about from one end about one third of the rack and the rack should bend down and meat should start to pull apart. There's Al's method he goes by temp and I'm sure he will be along shortly to give the correct info on that.
  3. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I and quite a few other guys smoke ribs to temp now instead of time.

    You need a good instant read therm, such as a thermapen.

    195 is tender & juicy.

    200 is fall off the bone.

    Check out PERFECT RIBS in my signature for the complete method that I use.

  4. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I prefer to smoke my ribs naked and at 250-275*. They are usually at a good bend in about 3 hours. Then I sauce/glaze them twice for 15 minutes each time.
  5. wayoung

    wayoung Fire Starter

    I tried naked once and ended up with rubber.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2016
  6. wayoung

    wayoung Fire Starter

    Which stage should I cook it longer in, the foiled? I don't want to dry the meat out by cooking longer.
  7. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I'm like Joe, I go with the no foil method also. If you're getting rubbery ribs it sounds like you aren't cooking them long enough. I positive that the therm you are measuring pit temp with is accurate? If it's a stock therm they are quite often not accurate. If you are at 5 hours cook time with the 2-2-1 method and your pit is at 225° then you should be very close to done. I prefer to use the bend test to test for doneness.

    The 2-2-1 method is just an approximate timing tool. You may want to try 2-2.5-.5, or 2.5-2-.5

    Or go naked and schwenk them. These were done in less than 2 hours!

  8. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I don't mean to high jack this thread, but those really look good, Case. I bet that open fire flavor was awesome. I haven't cooked anything on an open fire in a very long time. Thanks for the pic.

    Sorry again for the high jack, Joe.
  9. martyj

    martyj Fire Starter

    I've run into this same problem with the 2-2-1. My wife likes them fall off the bone. I cook mine at 225 smoker temp, cook them for 2 hours unwrapped, then wrap them for the 3 hours in the smoker. I pull them off, throw them on the grill, and sauce them on the grill. They usually have a great bend to them and they aren't quite falling apart. Hope this helps
  10. I would agree this sounds like the issue. Time guidelines like the 2-2-1 method are just that...guidelines. Nothing will ever trump your own feel with the particular piece of meat you're cooking. Some ribs might be done in four hours, some might take six. Meat is crazy. On the ribs, you're looking for a nice pliable, loose feel. Toothpick test is also a good way to feel it out. 

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