Chime in...FOB ribs or not

Discussion in 'Pork' started by jokensmoken, Jul 15, 2017.

  1. Those who know me know I love RIBS...I've cooked them for decades every way and cut imaginable.
    I'll never turn down ribs regardless of how they're cooked but I do have a particular favorite these days...
    I like SL cut Memphis style with just a hint of sauce burned on on a hot grill after smoking on apple and cherry. I prefer my ribs with a little pull and chew to them, not FOB nor very saucy.
    I all but got shouted down at a local pub when BBQ and ribs came up with one buddy absolutely INSISTING the ONLY WAY to cook ribs was to boil them first...
    well needless to say I paid no heed to him at all but everyone in the conversation insisted ribs had to be a saucy mess and FOB or they weren't done right.
    I'm just curious if I'm in the minority here...not necessarily with the sauce issue because sometimes I like ribs a little sauced up but do most folks really prefer FOB or insist the only good ribs are FOB.
    Just curious what y'all think and prefer.

  2. drunkenmeatfist

    drunkenmeatfist Meat Mopper

    I struggle with this myself. I like a moist rib that has to have some pull to get it off the bone. I am still new to smoking, so I started with 321 or other methods that called for wrapping. They all turned out to be rib stew IMO. At the very most I will wrap ribs for 30 minutes. Maybe I am doing something wrong. The last rack I did was liked by all, but I didn't like the bone pulling out. 
  3. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I personally like dry rub ribs hands down (not a sauce person) my fam usually likes that as well. But when they request theirs a bit wet, we will put a bit of sauce on their rack at the end. Usually Jeff's sauce or Sweet Baby Ray's! We do all however like our ribs bite off the bone, rarely do I have a request for FOTB.

    I do not agree with par boiling ribs, I think that's just removing flavor & ruining the integrity of the ribs. Just my opinion, for what it's worth.
  4. SmokingAl has a great tutorial on here about ribs that's very informative it's very.much worth the read but I'll give you a tip. Cook your ribs to a particular internal temperature instead of relying on time alone.
    I stick my instant read digital probe thermometer between the bones in the thickest part of the rib...try not to hit the bones for a more accurate reading.
    If I'm going to hot sear on my grill after smoking (I do that to carmalized the sauce) I pull my ribs off the smoker at about 188°-190°
    If I'm not searing them on the grill I pull them at about 195°-198°.
    For me this temp gives me just the right amount of pull from the bone and just the right chew.
    Experiment a can always cut one rib off and test it and throw them back on if they're not done enough.

    Hope this tip helps and look up Al's ...prefect ribs every time, THIS REALLY and give it a read. Al's got ribs down

  5. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  6. I prefer my ribs 'neckid' with a little pull to them. To me FOTB are mushy ribs. Everyone buys into the 3-2-1 blindly and thinks that this is what ribs are supposed to be. I think it was that 'world renowned' Gordon Ramsey that was big on boiling ribs first.
  7. b-one

    b-one Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I like a little tug as well,if I wanted fall off the bone pulled pork is cheaper. I have started to rotisserie ribs most of the time prefer dry maybe a touch of sauce on the side usally if eating the cold leftovers.
  8. drunkenmeatfist

    drunkenmeatfist Meat Mopper

    I must be doing something wrong. Every time I use Al's recipe or any other recipe that calls for foiling for more than 20-30 minutes my ribs turn to mush. 
  9. I've been using Smokin Al's formula and my ribs have gotten better each time substantially (I just posted my best ribs yet last Thursday). While I agree to each his own, Al's recipe strikes that balance of tender and pull. Never did any type of 3-2-1 and don't know if I ever will because cooking to temp has given me more solid results. Just my two cents...
  10. Again I say " It depends on what part of the country you live in. what you grew up eating and Most important Personal Taste"

    When I cook ribs for the whole family, I have to do them several ways. #2 son and one grandson like dry, hot and spicy one DIL likes a little wet and a little kick. Wife and other grandson like wet and sweet another granddaughter likes very little spice and just a little sauce.

    So I cook them all yhen everybody is happy.  Me I like mine Dry ans real spicy and use sauce when I eat them. Sometimes I'll lightly coat them with BBQ sauce and on a hot grill (There is a BBQ place here in Tyler that does it that way. Pretty good.

    Growing up my mom would par boil slap some BBQ sauce on them and under the broiler for a few. I thought this was how ribs were cooked till I finally ate some Real BBQ ribs.

    But that goes back to personal taste  Fix em like you Like em

  11. smokinal

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

    If you ask 10 people your going to get 10 different answers on how they like their ribs.

    The only comment I would make is if you cook them to temp instead of time you will get the same consistency every time you cook them.

    The method you use doesn't matter 195 is tender & juicy with a little pull when you bite into them, that's how I like them.

    If you like FOTB tender then just take them to 200-205.

    Sauce, rub, foil, no foil, all add different flavors to the ribs, but the doneness will always be what you want if you cook to temp.

  12. I agree about what you're used is perspective... It wasn't till I started traveling and eating BBQ across the country that I was exposed to regional preferences and developed a love for Texas style brisket or dry rubbed Memphis style ribs...
    Knowing that people tend to grow accustomed to what they're familiar with is why I posted this question here.
    I think I know we all experiment alot and are open to trying different recipes, ideas and techniques thus are exposed to many more styles.

  13. lancep

    lancep Master of the Pit

    I grew up hating ribs! Ribs were always cooked on a grill and could not chew them. So it didn't matter what they were marinated in, rubbed with or how good your sauce was, I hated ribs.......

    When I was stationed in Hawaii, I used to gig in town for extra cash and one of the places I performed at was a place called Kevin's Two Boots. Kevin was a chef from Louisiana who had worked for one of the big hotels until opening his own place. Excellent Cajun and creole but he also did ribs. His slogan was " if you need teeth to eat them, they're not Kevin's." These were the first ribs I ever enjoyed. They didn't fall off the bone but they were super tender.

    This was the goal I always shot for. I finally dialed it in about a year and a half ago. The meat isn't falling off the bone but it's starting to think about it. A thin glaze of sauce to balance the richness of the meat but only just enough that the smokey meat takes the spotlight. Here in the Memphis area, I'll usually also do a slab dry for memfolks that like em that way.

    As far as FOTB, I always question whether people literally want their ribs to fall off the bone while they try to eat them or they're really just trying to describe a level of tenderness. I think most people fall into the latter. But as said above, for those who prefer the former, butts are cheaper.

  14. Yeah...I agree...I think people confuse tender with FOB...AND told a couple of these guys the other night...well just eat pulled pork if you don't want to "fight" with rib's $2.00-$3.00 a pound cheaper.
  15. kam59

    kam59 Smoking Fanatic

    We cook ribs way more at competition than at home. We also cook strictly IBCA which the judges use a cheap plastic knife and fork as the judges are not allowed to touch the meat with their hands. The struggle for us is when we cook IBCA they are 3 to 3.5 hour FOB ST. Louis cut ribs then when we want what we prefer at home I have to retrain myself lol.
  16. young j

    young j Fire Starter

    Until I got into smoking I used to think that the term FOB ribs was a big compliment so I can see why so many people think that. Personally rather have it competition style, but don't mind if they are FOB
  17. Right...I'm still thinking that folks confuse FOB and tender because they just haven't had juicy tender ribs that weren't FOB.
    They "think" that to be tender ribs must be cooked to FOB consistency.
  18. cavman

    cavman Smoke Blower

    I prefer a little bite and pull to them. My favorites now are Babybacks and back ribs finished at an IT of 165. I dry rub the ribs only in the smoker but like to squirt a little bbq sauce on before the bite. All others eating my bbq prefer them with a little bite but no sauce. I agree with previous statement if you want shredded meat go with pork butt.
  19. cksteele

    cksteele Smoking Fanatic

    not a big fan of sweet and sticky ribs  im def in the camp of good BBQ  does not need sauce. FOTB i dont like but if they are tender and you bite the meat and it comes away cleanly from the bone but its not mush i like that 
  20. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    I have posted this or similar a few times. Maybe 5% of Americans have Smokers, learn about different styles of cooking ribs including Memphis Dry, KC Wet and Sweet and all the variations. Another 5% think BBQ  is done over a screaming hot gas grill or maybe lighter fluid soaked charcoal where ribs have to be cooked and tender in the same time frame as Chicken, Burgers and Steaks. The ONLY WAY to get there is the way Dad or Uncle Bob learned, and taught, during the 50's Backyard BBQ craze and that was to Boil the Snot out of the ribs then burn gobs of BBQ Sauce on them for color and some flavor. 90% of folks, mostly in the Northern States, eat their ribs at places like Chili's, Lone Star and Outback Steak restaurants and an assortment of Chains that have Ribs on the menu, regardless of their Theme or Style of food. Chains have to turn over tables fast to make a profit. They need food that cooks fast and can be fired by min wage, home from college kids or out of work Factory workers that can be trained in a few hours. The ribs are more likely a Pre-cooked Frozen item made by some division of Tyson or Smithfield, that only need a few minuted on the grill to reheat and get out the door. The other style of ribs are actually Cooked on Site at popular Rib chains and high volume joints. Hundreds of racks are cooked in Steam/Smoke Injected Combi-Ovens then held at !50°F until an order comes in. A mopping of Sauce, a couple of turns on a Wood Grill and they go out the door. In the first case the Tyson Ribs are are steamed for quick cooking and then browned with high heat. They are cooked FOB to guarantee tenderness regardless of who finishes them. In the second case, the ribs are likely under cooked slightly in anticipation of holding them hot. But at 150 collagen continues to breakdown and in short order, those ribs are FOB. So, how does a multi-million dollar corporation sell Train Car loads of FOB Ribs when cooking shows, smoker builders and Q competition teams are preaching the Gospel of Bite Through??? ADVERTISE to the masses, even in the Southern State where folks grew up on ribs that need some Jawin', that Ribs are Supposed to be FOB and Dripping in a Sweet Sauce! You run hundreds of hours of commercials with pretty people moaning and rolling their eyes back in their heads as each tender morsel crosses their lips, especially at 3-5pm and late night when empty bellies are starting to groan, and in a flash, FOB Ribs are the Norm and desired, no, demanded by the majority.

    NOW...Add some Booze, Testosterone and the Weekend Warrior/God of the Gas Grill, wearing a Kiss the Chef apron and Lobster Claw oven Mitts, who spent his youth at Dad's side quick firing Boiled Ribs, who's willing to throw Fists to convince you that the way Dad/He does Ribs are the Best, 'cause his drinkin' buddies told him so, and boiled is the only way to do them! Just smile and nod in agreement because you got an argument that has been playing out at least since the end of WWll and Mr. Weber invented the Kettle...

    There is nothing wrong with Med/Rare Steak like Ribs, as recently posted, Bite Through with a little tug Ribs or FOB Ribs that can only be eaten with a fork...If you and or your family like them, then THEY are the only Ribs worth eating!!!...JJ

    BTW...I do both. SL Racks at 225, 5-6 hours all smoke, gives the bite l like. 3-2-.5 at 225, with my Foiling Juice, puts smiles on the faces of Mom and the Girls...[​IMG]
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2017

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