Tips from the experience Rib smokers, please

Discussion in 'Pork' started by herscht, Jun 20, 2011.

  1. I did my second set of ribs this past weekend. My first set were the regular cut ribs.  This past Sat I did five racks of St Louis cut ribs. They were tasty but not fall off the bone tender.  I did a 2.5-2-1 method.  I also reduced the heat to 235.

    I am using a MES 40 with hickory chips.  Had the damper wide open and appeared I got a good smoke.

    Another change I made was the last hour of saucing, I opened the tops of the foil to paint on the sauce instead of removing them completely. 

    There was not a lot of pullback from the bone.

    My question is, to achieve that fall off the bone tender, do I need to increase the heat and smoke a little longer?
  2. smokinal

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

    Keep it in the foil longer.
  3. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    2 hours in foil at 235° should be sufficient, and that's when you'll get most of your pullback.

    Increase first part of cook to 3 hours and confirm your temp is actually 235° foil for the 2 hours and check for pullback an tenderness, if the ribs aren't where you want them after the foiling stage increase the time in the foil as Al stated, check after 15 minutes.

    Then firm up and sauce.
  4. flash

    flash Smoking Guru OTBS Member

     I would agree with sqwib. Check on that thermo.
  5. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Did you add a little liquid when you foiled?  The 3-2-1 usually gives a little more of the falling off the bone than I like, so something must be different. 

    Good luck and good smoking.
  6. I did add apple juice, approx 2 - 3 oz per rack when I foiled.  I am also pretty confident of the temperature because I got a good over thermeter about a week ago and ran some tests on the smoker.
  7. raptor700

    raptor700 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

     I smoke at 250º and do a 3-2-½ and they are fall off the bone.

    You can get fall off the bone smoking at 235º  but you will need to smoke longer and leave foiled longer, Like a 3-3-1.

    Remember the second number (3-2-1) is where you get your pullback.

    If there not tender enough, just leave foiled longer.

    Hope this helps [​IMG]
  8. werdwolf

    werdwolf Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    You got some good advice above.  with 5 racks, your recovery time maybe slowing you down.  I have and MES 30 and use a 3-2-.5 for spares and they come out falling off the bone (which is how the wife likes them)  Mostly we have been using back ribs lately and there I use a 2.5-1.5-.5 and they come out the same.  Play around with it and get back to the gang if your still not where you want to be at.

    ? are you spritzing or looking, that would prolong your times due to recovery.
  9. I have acheived fall of the bone without foiling before. I was at a tailgate party and just had the ribs smoking all day. i was just to busy(partying) to  go threw my usual method. I put them on about 9 and didnt pull to well after 4 or 5. These babies  were awesome. I dont prefer the fall of the bone rib but those at the tailgate sure did. Not for sure if this helps any. Oh my grill was a offset firebox vertical new braunfels using briquetts and I think cherry or hickory.
  10. el ropo

    el ropo Newbie

    I make fall off the bone ribs without foiling, and cook 'em at around 275-300.  A rack of St Louis style will have plenty of pullback and pass the bend test (which is all that really matters when it comes to ribs) in 4 hours or less.  But I don't open the cooker at all.  No peeking, no spritzing, no foiling, just let 'er rip till the weeping starts to quiet down.

    No sauce required:


    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
  11. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

       Ropo has it down. I also never foil,smoke at 200* to 225*f ,untrimmed and unopened for 6 hrs. THEN i check for pull back and crack.

    You'll know you are in the zone if you see them sweating (weeping) when you open them for the check.

       The K.I.S.S. method is the best,and once shut,leave the darn Smoker lid "SHUT"-that means don't open the thing by any means,not even if it means you sleep on the couch all night,or that raise is in jeopardy.After trying them,things will turn around-you may get an even bigger raise(in both areas-LOL) after they taste the difference and realize you know your stuff[​IMG]

       I keep referring to  the Physics of smoking-when you open the lid on a fairly well sealed Smoker, you lose Heat,Pressure and Moisture( built up in the chamber from juices and water in the meat)

      Heat and Pressure are the same, and thier action on moisture containing products(this being themeat inside your cooking chamber as they expand from the heat and the meat juices hitting the bottom of your Smoker)remember-heat=pressure.

       The great majority of meat juice will be taken into the meat fibers and the unsaturated fats(the Collegen and Lipids) will melt and flow out of the meat.

       The better your Pit is seald, the better and quicker your "Que" will be done;  opening the lid is the one thing most BYC's do,they spend so much time and effort to get a good meal and it's not done when they want it, and guest are dissapointed.

       Now ,again I'm in  for a trip to the penalty box; when smoking like meats and all are close weighing the same(a 4-5lb. diff. won't matter)will cook more efficently,timelier,and retain it's juiciness ---IF you leave the door shut and let the food Gods do the work.

       That's why a lot of us say  "NO Peeky"

       Hope this helps and...[​IMG]
  12. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Looks good.

    Mr. T

    “If it fit’s, smoke it” 
  13. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

  14. jlstout

    jlstout Newbie

    I agree with the adding a little liquid to the foil.  I sprits mine with apple juice/apple cider vinegar every hour, then spritz really well when I foil them.  Gets them more tender that way IMHO.
  15. el ropo

    el ropo Newbie

    But...  In order to add liquid, you have to peek.  [​IMG]

Share This Page