Help with ribs.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by jmurph88, Aug 14, 2015.

  1. jmurph88

    jmurph88 Newbie

    Hey guys and gals!Tis is my first post and I'm looking for some help. I'm new to the smoking game and I'm already addicted. I smoked some spare ribs the other day and they had unbelievable flavor, however, they werent as tender as I would have liked. I know the problem is probably in the temp..I was shooting for 225 but it fluxuated between 225 and 275. My grill is a charbroiler offset so needless to say its not top of the line by any means. But i was wondering if any of you guys had any tips on insulating it and what you would use to do so. Also, have you found that using a pan of water in the barrel would help with this? Thanks!
  2. jmurph88

    jmurph88 Newbie

    Also worth noting that they were dry especially on the outside. I sprayed them down with apple cider vinegar every 45 min.
  3. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    With that smoker, insulation is not needed but controlling air is. If there is any leaks, varing amounts of air is getting to the fire and you will have temp fluctuations. A High Temp RTV Silicone may work as well as Oven Gasket. Search Offset Smoker Mods for more info on tuning that unit up.

    If tender and moist Ribs is what you want try this...JJ

    Smoked Ribs as easy as 3-2-1

    A full rack of Spare Ribs will take about 6 hours at 225*F...The 3-2-1 smoked rib recipe is a good way to smoke ribs and tends to turn out perfect ribs every time whether you are using the meatier Full rack spare rib or the Saint Louis cut. Baby Back ribs use a 2-2-1 method. The ribs are smoked at 225 - 250 degrees for best results...
    The 3 stands for the 3 hours that you initially smoke the ribs with nothing but your favorite rub on them and some smoke with your favorite hardwood such as hickory, apple, pecan, etc. After the 3 hours you remove the ribs and quickly double wrap them in heavy duty foil.. just before you seal them up add some Foiling Juice or Apple Juice and close the foil leaving some room around the ribs for the steam to be able to flow around the meat and the juice to braise the meat which Flavors/Tenderizes it.

    The ribs cook in the smoker wrapped for 2 hours undisturbed. There is no need for Smoke at this point... After 2 hours remove the ribs from the smoker, unwrap, saving any juices in the foil, and place back into the smoker for the final 1 hour, with smoke if you wish.This firms them up, creates a nice Bark and finishes the cooking process. You can add a glaze or sauce at this point if you like. The meat will be pretty close to fall off the bone and be extremely juicy, tender and flavorful...JJ

    Foiling Juice / Sweet Pulled Pork Finishing Sauce

    Foiling Juice

    For each Rack of Ribs Combine:

    1T Pork Rub, yours

    1/2 Stick Butter

    1/2C Cane Syrup... Dark Corn Syrup...or Honey

    1/4C Apple Cider...or Juice

    1T Molasses

    Optional: 2T Apple Cider Vinegar. Add 2T Mustard and 1/4C Ketchup to make it more of a KC Glaze.

    Simmer until a syrupy consistency.

    Allow to cool for 5 minutes, pour over foiled Ribs and

    run your 2 hour phase of 3-2-1. For the last phase return

    the ribs to the smoker BUT reserve any Juice remaining

    in the Foil. Simmer the Juice over med/low heat to reduce to a saucy thickness. Glaze the Ribs for presentation or service.
  4. jmurph88

    jmurph88 Newbie

    I used the 3-2-1 method. I was wondering if the grills thermostat could be off and it could be cooking too high. they were already getting dry before i wrapped them. I used mustard, rub, and brown sugar before putting them on. I used a mixture of charcoal and hickory as fuel. Ismoked some chicken yesterday as well. The meat was juicy and tender but the skin was inedibly tough.
  5. crankybuzzard

    crankybuzzard Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Stock thermometers on smokers and grills are notoriously bad! Get a known good thermometer and use that to set and maintain your pit temps.

    You can test a thermometer in boiling water and with ice water.
  6. jond36

    jond36 Meat Mopper

    From what I am told, a water pan also tries to keep the dome temp at 212 until the water is boiled off. I am not sure if that has validity or not.

    Also remember that people BBQ between 180 and 550. Just find that right feel with a bend or probe test. Its not necessarily a set time. All racks and smokers are different.
  7. jond36

    jond36 Meat Mopper

    Chickens must be done hotter also. 325 or 350 and hotter for a better skin. Anything under those temps will be rubber.
  8. jmurph88

    jmurph88 Newbie

    Thank you so much! yea i tried the chicken at 300* and it fluctuated between 250-300. Just trying to get a the hang of moderating these temps. Learning a lot though. I will definitely give the water pan a try. I've got ribs coated for tomorrow so I will definitely be using this advice.
  9. Never trust the supplied therometer. Life advice to abide by.
  10. jmurph88

    jmurph88 Newbie

    I bought an acurite meat thermometer a while back and ive rigged it up where its hanging in open air and its reading a 50 degree difference in temp. Smoker says 250 probe says 200

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