Smoked beef ribs are one of the many delicacies seen at the home of people all around the world. When beef is so tender that it is ripped right off of the bone and practically melts in your mouth, you know that it has been smoked to near perfection. There is something special about smoking meat to just the right flavor and eating with friends and family.
If you want to know how to smoke beef ribs in a smoker and do not have your own family recipe to follow, you are in luck. We have tested dozens of different methods and will provide you with everything you need to know to smoke ribs to mere perfection.
Smoking Beef Ribs: 3 Steps
There are a lot of little intricate details that can make your ribs turn out great or turn out mediocre. Let’s first discuss how to best prepare the ribs before going any further.
Remove the Membrane From The Ribs
The first step is to remove the membrane from the ribs. This is a thin layer of skin that will stop the absorption of the rub and smoked flavor if not removed. You can remove this membrane by:
- Using a blunt knife, such as a butter knife.
- Place the knife between the bone and membrane.
- Loosen the membrane with the knife and work your way around the cut.
- Once the membrane is accessible, grab it with a paper towel.
- Slowly pull the membrane off of the ribs ensuring it is all removed.
This is a very tedious process, but it is essential to ensure that the flavor is locked into the meat.
Making a Rub To Give the Ribs More Flavor
A rub will be needed to give your meat a delightful flavor. A rub is simple to make. Here is a quick recipe that leaves the ribs filled with flavor:
- ¼ cup of brown sugar
- ¼ cup of salt
- ¼ cup of chili powder
- 2 – 3 Tbsp. of pepper
- 1 Tbsp. of garlic
- 1 Tsp. of cayenne pepper
Now, simply mix all of the ingredients together and rub them into the cut. You can also choose to put mustard or another type of sauce on the beef and work in the rub with your fingers. This is a messy process, but it is essential for great tasting ribs. You can let the rub sit for a while to absorb into the beef if you like.You can also prepare a marinade to put on the ribs if you like, but this is per preference.
I like the following marinade:
- 4 ounces of olive oil
- 4 ounces of soy sauce
- 4 ounces of Worcestershire Sauce
You will now mix the ingredients together and place them on top of your cut or put the cut and marinade into a bag. We like to leave the ribs marinating for 6 – 24 hours.
Preparing the Smoker For The Beef Ribs
Now that the meat is ready to be smoked, you will need to prepare your smoker.
This can be done by:
- Presoaking wood chips for 20 – 30 minutes.
- Filling the water pan about 2/3 of the way.
- Placing wood chips into the wood chip box.
- Add in the chip flavor you like most. Common choices include:
- Maintain a temperature of 200 – 225 F.
Note: You will need to use 3 to 4 cups of wood chips for approximately an hour of smoking. Many people choose to smoke their ribs for 4 to 6 hours. The longer you smoke your ribs, the more flavor they will have, but you need to stop after the first 2 hours. Once the two hour mark is reached, remove the ribs from the smoker and wrap them in aluminum foil before proceeding to smoke for the last 2 to 4 hours. This is done to ensure that the smoke flavor is not too abundant.
Last Words On The Smoking Process
Remember, you need to rotate the meat every 30 minutes to ensure that each side of the ribs is cooked completely. We recommend cutting a piece of to taste it before fully removing the ribs from the smoker.