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Oldpro1946 07-04-2014 05:33 AM

Trimming spare ribs
I am going to try some spare ribs Sunday for the first time. After many tries at BB's, 4 hrs @ 250, no foil, I get them like I like them. I think I will try the spares @250 for 5 hrs? But the question is, why do people trim the spares so they become St. Louis ribs? Aren't they trimming away lots of "good stuff"? I thought I'd smoke them untrimmed, any suggestions? Thanks.

captndan 07-04-2014 06:07 AM

Either way is OK same result. I trim mine because I like the burnt ends. The St. Louis style makes a better presentation if that's important. Eat well.

grantw 07-04-2014 06:18 AM

Triming them gets rid of the cartilage and makes a nice looking/nice eating rib. Cooking it full you have the cartilage to deal with while eating it

Enrico Brandizzi 07-04-2014 06:26 AM

For me presentation is important. They look pretty well all the same shape. As said cartilagen are really unlike to bite so ... Another problem solved!

Militant83 07-04-2014 07:08 AM

If you don't want to do a St. Louis cut, Aaron Franklin has a good video on ribs. Its a mix between whole spares and St. Louis. He calls it a Kansas City cut. I think they still have a nice presentation to them for backyard cooks.

deguerre 07-04-2014 07:14 AM

I just leave 'em whole. The cartilage just makes it fun. BE the rib...


chicagokp 07-04-2014 07:28 AM

I always referenced this link for trimming.

dadsr4 07-04-2014 08:20 AM

Untrimmed spares are messier to eat. That is the only down side I see. I think the flavor is better.

alecksjaycubs 07-04-2014 08:48 AM

I trim them to St. Louis for a few reasons. First it looks good and it's what people think of when they think ribs. I trim the belly from the rib tips then throw everything on the smoker after putting rub on everything. The trimmings are usually done first and can be cut up for little snacks or used to see how the cook is going.

1buckie 07-04-2014 09:21 AM

Chicagokp's link show an easy how-to for complete trim, Militant83's & this thread talks about the other, less trimmed "KC" cutout:

Enjoy your cookup !!!!

Bludawg 07-04-2014 09:43 AM

Your plan is solid, however I think 275 is a better temp for ribs Guerry those bones look amazing may be one day RedHot will show you how:-P

1buckie 07-04-2014 09:48 AM


Originally Posted by Bludawg (Post 2980265)
Your plan is solid, however I think 275 is a better temp for ribs Guerry those bones look amazing may be one day RedHot will show you how:-P

Might be the 'sauce' that makes 'em look so snazzy?

DanB 07-04-2014 10:07 AM

Next time with spares, smoke them whole trim afterwards.
I used to trim the spares to St Louis style, but it was a major pain trimming the tips to be ground for sausage.

dadsr4 07-04-2014 02:19 PM

To me, the cartilage in the tips is no different to deal with than the bones in chicken wings. Except that there is more meat. People handle chicken wings with no problem, in fact, they pay money to buy them special. Growing up, I was the only one to eat wings, otherwise they got pitched.

leanza 07-04-2014 02:31 PM

It's all good either way. I've settled on 3-1-1/2 at 230* or so.

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