View Full Version : Help with baby back ribs

08-01-2016, 07:47 PM
First time poster, love the site and thanks for all the crazy good info.

I've made a dozen of so racks of ribs. I don't care for foiled methods and 225-250 for 3-4 hours works best for me.

My question is on baby back ribs there is a hunk of meat on about a 1/3 to 1/2 of the rack that is always dry as hell. It runs across the top of the meat at the thickest part of the rib by the long end I believe. The rest of the meat comes out perfect but these few bites are terrible. I prefer spares for this reason, they just come out nice and uniform but around here I can get babies cheaper and I like that they are easier to eat and meaty. Is it possible I'm under cooking them and the thick part isn't getting done? The entire rack feels probe tender but that one muscle stays tough so I'm afraid to cook it longer and have the rest fall apart or get dry.

I was thinking hot and fast would be better suited for baby ribs. Does anyone else experience this? Is there any adivice you experts have?

08-01-2016, 08:00 PM
I cook mostly baby backs. I go by the bend test. When they start to tear I pull them. I cook them at 300 with no foil most of the time. Other than the skinny end I don't have any chewy parts.

Hillbilly BBQ
08-01-2016, 08:00 PM
I tend to like baby backs at a lower temp. They are smaller and not as forgiving as St Louis.

I like 250 for about 2 hours, I will wrap for 30 min, smoke for another 30-45 then sauce and finish. 3.25-3.5 hours they are perfect for me in my smoker.

I dont like to do the 3-2-1 with these, they turn into mush....30 min is a good amount of time to soften the meat up just enough.

Others I am sure will add their .02

08-01-2016, 08:04 PM
I actually have the same problem with mine which is why I prefer to cook spare ribs as well. My drum likes to run at 275. I cooked some yesterday and that loin strip was dry but the rest was spot on.

08-01-2016, 08:07 PM
Yes the BB largely have one thicker side and one thinner. What you can do is simply pull the thinner half when they are done by cutting that portion off and letting the thicker half cook. Other options would be to cut in half from the start so you can pull the thinner half first or just go the happy medium for both halves and pull it all at once.

08-01-2016, 08:32 PM
I know what strip your talking about...A lot of times, I'll run my knife under the strip and separate it from the ribs

Smith's Pig Pen
08-01-2016, 08:43 PM
Love me some babybacks. For me it depends on the cut. I try to find the the least amount of tapering and most uniform rack. Sometimes I see babybacks now that are so meaty, they look like mock STL cuts- those are my favorite and cook the easiest. On the other hand, they usually are pretty uneven, so I cut those in half from the get go. If you can though... Get the meatiest, even rack.

I'd recommend these other 2 things:

1. go 275ish for 2ish hours.
2. Do a short wrap... 15-30 mins

Faster cook time and a little extra steam time= moist&tender

08-04-2016, 12:19 AM
Thanks for all the help, I've got some ideas to try next time they are on sale.