Baking Ribs

BBQ Ribs Recipe: The Ultimate Guide to Perfectly Smoky and Tender Ribs

Juicy and flavorful BBQ ribs hot off the grill

The Ultimate BBQ Ribs Recipe for Tender, Smoky Ribs

Barbecue ribs are a staple of summer barbecues, cookouts, and family gatherings. Whether you're a seasoned pit-master or just starting out, cooking up a delicious rack of ribs can be a challenge. But with the right recipe and techniques, anyone can create perfectly smoky, tender, and juicy ribs that are sure to impress.

In this comprehensive guide, we'll cover everything you need to know to cook BBQ ribs that are mouth-watering, fall-off-the-bone tender, and packed with flavor. From selecting the right cut of ribs to choosing the right wood, we'll take you through every step of the process to ensure that you get the best results possible.

Step 1: Choose the Right Cut of Ribs

The first step in making great BBQ ribs is selecting the right cut of ribs. There are two main types of ribs: spareribs and baby back ribs. Spareribs are larger and meatier, but take longer to cook. Baby back ribs are more tender and cook more quickly, but are also smaller and more expensive.

For this BBQ ribs recipe, we recommend using baby back ribs. They are more tender, cook more quickly, and have a milder flavor that pairs well with a variety of barbecue sauces.

Step 2: Trim the Ribs

Once you have your ribs, the next step is to trim them. To do this, use a sharp knife to remove any excess fat, sinew, or meat that is not attached to the bone. This will help the ribs to cook more evenly and prevent them from becoming tough and chewy.

Step 3: Season the Ribs

After trimming the ribs, it's time to season them. For this BBQ ribs recipe, we recommend using a simple dry rub consisting of brown sugar, paprika, garlic powder, chili powder, and cumin. Simply mix the ingredients together in a bowl and massage the rub into the ribs, making sure to cover both sides evenly.

Step 4: Smoke the Ribs

Once the ribs are seasoned, it's time to smoke them. To do this, you'll need a smoker or a grill with a smoker box. If you're using a grill, set it up for indirect heat by lighting one side of the grill and placing the ribs on the opposite side. If you're using a smoker, preheat it to 225-250°F.

Once the smoker or grill is preheated, place the ribs in the smoker or on the indirect heat side of the grill. Smoke the ribs for 3-4 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches 145-165°F. During the smoking process, make sure to keep the temperature of the smoker or grill consistent by adjusting the vents as needed.

Step 5: Sauce the Ribs

After smoking the ribs for 3-4 hours, it's time to sauce them. For this BBQ ribs recipe, we recommend using a tangy, tomato-based barbecue sauce. Brush the sauce onto the ribs, making sure to cover both sides evenly.

Step 6: Finish the Ribs on the Grill

Once the ribs are sauced, place them on the direct heat side of the grill and cook for an additional 5-10 minutes, or until the sauce is caramelized and the ribs are heated through. Make sure to flip the ribs every 2-3 minutes to prevent burning and ensure even cooking.

Step 7: Serve and Enjoy

Once the ribs are done, remove them from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes before serving. This will allow the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, making the ribs even more tender and flavorful.

When it's time to serve, cut the ribs into individual portions and serve with your favorite sides, such as coleslaw, baked beans, or corn on the cob.


With the right recipe and techniques, cooking BBQ ribs can be a breeze. Whether you're a seasoned pitmaster or just starting out, this comprehensive guide will help you achieve perfectly smoky, tender, and juicy ribs every time. So fire up your smoker or grill, gather your ingredients, and get ready to create a delicious meal that your friends and family will love.

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