View Full Version : Baby back ribs a little dry

09-02-2010, 03:46 AM

I did my first batch of baby back ribs in my seasoned 1400.
Hi all,

I did about 5 slabs with dry rub.

I cooked them for 5 hours on the racks using at 225 degrees with 2.5 oz of wood which gave a mild smoke flavor. It was apple wood. I will add a stick of hickory next time. I am taking good notes and reading a lot on this forum. :)

The ribs came out okay for the most part and my wife thought they were a little dry because they did nit fall off of the bone. She likes the boiled type ribs. *sigh*.

Any feedback is appreciated.

Thank you,

09-02-2010, 02:34 PM
First thought here was that they were over-done. My BBs usually take 4 hrs max, of course that just smoking 2 racks. Could of been bad ribs.

How many times did you open the door? Doing so dumps a LOT of moisture!

How did you test for doneness? Please don't tell me you cooked by time recommended on a recipe! :eek:

I've said it before & will say it again: Boiling ribs zaps flavor and makes ribs mushy. Don't do it. We have to teach the Mrs what good ribs taste like.

Try doing your BBs at 250* the entire time & see what you think. That's become protocol here. Spares are a different story.

Just a few thoughts... ;)

09-02-2010, 06:21 PM
Hi Wheelz,

Thank you for replying.

I did not open the door at all. I just went by time, i know, i know - from what i have been reading here the common times are 4 to 5 hours and none of the posts talk about temp probes on baby backs.

i would never boils ribs.

If i try your temp setting at 250 for four hours? i will try a smaller load this time 2 racks like you said. i have to admit i wanted to open the door, haha.

When i opened the door i tested by doneness by poking the ribs with a fork.
some of the ribs had the meat pulled up past the bone like they shrunk if that makes sense. Exposing the bones on the ends.

not sure if this makes a difference: i did cut the ribs in half to make them all fit on the racks because i do not have the rib hangers.

Thank you again.

09-02-2010, 08:07 PM
Ok, let's just write this off as a bad experience. Next time use this for a test, very simple. If doing BBs (or any ribs for that matter), try to push a tooth pick thru the thickest meat - between the bones, of course! :rolleyes: If it goes thur with little to no effort, the ribs are done. IF they are not done, have a spritzer of apple juice handy to replenish a bit of the moisture.

Meat-pull back from the bone doesn't really mean anything except that the meat has been hotter than the bone! :confused:

Give this a shot and see how it goes.

Good luck! ;)

09-02-2010, 11:50 PM
thank you Wheelz!!!

09-03-2010, 07:44 PM
Fellas, just sitting here thinking about what was posted above. So I now have this question. If the ribs were a little dry at 225 for 4 hours, why should he raise the heat to 250 and cook for about 4 hrs? This seems counter intuitive to me? I don't want to imply that I know something more than you guys, just trying to understand the thought process.
I have had difficulty in getting "great ribs". Basically, my ribs are dry, so I try and vary things, but really don't ever get moist tender ribs. Next batch I plan on putting ribs in shallow dish, so they self bast during cook time? Any thoughts on this?
I also, go by time, don't really think temp prob would be that accurate for BB.
I too keep the door closed till 4hr pass, then let sit for 15 mins or so. I am open to suggestions for great ribs. Thanks.

billy b
09-13-2010, 02:32 PM
After cooking my ribs for 3 hours I spritz them good with apple juice & wrap each rack in foil & put them back in for an hour, they come out falling off the bone & juicy.

09-14-2010, 11:26 AM
Been away for a while... jgal, I can't give you the logic or reason behind me cooking BBs at 250*. All I can say is that it works for me. I've owned my ST for 8+ years and once, maybe twice I've had dry ribs. Not once have I foiled ribs. If that's what works for you, great! :D This in not a competition to see who cooks up the best ribs, it's all about sharing techniques and hoping to find something that suits you, your family & friends.

Experiment & have fun. ;)

09-15-2010, 04:28 PM
jgal...all the above is good info and Wheelz is right on the money!!! I too do not wrap my ribs but many do. I have not tried this but some swear by it.

Cook at 225 for 3hrs

Pull and drizzle some honey on and sprinkle with brown sugar and wrap.

Cook for 1hr

Pull and let rest for 15-20min


11-05-2010, 07:42 PM
I know this is an old posting, but did you pull the membrane off the back as part of your prep? There is a membrane there and I use a butter knife to get just a part of it started and then use a paper towel to hold onto it and then pull the remainder off by hand. You should also use water in your smoker and make sure it stays full. I also spritz mine with apple juice once an hour till done.
There is also a 3,2,1, method 3 hrs of smoke 2 hrs wrapped in foil and 1 hr for your wet mop if using.

11-07-2010, 09:17 AM
Scotty -- While I agree with the variety of methods for cooking ribs, I have to disagree with "You should also use water in your smoker." These smokers are, by design, moist smokers. If you have to use water I would think one is opening the door too often (maybe to spritz with AJ). IMO, the only reason for spritzing with AJ is to add a tad of flavor. If I have to sacrifice moisture for the touch of flavor AJ adds, well, I would rather not do it.:rolleyes:

Not meant to be argumentative... Just stating what has worked for me for years! ;)

11-24-2010, 03:20 PM
BillyBob's post is about the same recipe I use with great results. I cook at around 225, membrane off, dry rub the racks and let sit in saran wrap at least 4 hours or overnight if you can.

I cook meat side up for an hour and a half, meat side down for about 30 to 45 then place in heavy duty foil meat side up and COVER with honey then add about 2 Tablespoons of apple juice under the rack and make a foil tent that is as airtight as you can get it. Place back in smoker for about 45 minutes to an hour checking from time to time for your desired tenderness. When they are right for you, unwrap and then you can hit them on a high heat grill with some BBQ sauce if you like that to carmelize the sauce. I prefer them with no sauce but to each his own!

The ribs will NOT taste like honey so don't worry about that...I think it is merely adding moisture rather than a lot of flavor.

Total cook time about 3 to 3 1/2 hours depending on thickness of meat and your desired tenderness level. Remember that you can go too far with the "fall off the bone" quest and have something you can't even slice and hold in your hands to eat.

11-27-2010, 08:33 AM
I have some friends who also like their rib meat to practically fall off the bone. I've found what works for me is to cook longer at at lower temp. Usually somewhere between 180-190. Sometimes going as long as 8 - 10 hours. Never had a dryness problem the fat of the rib rendering into the meat and the design of the smokin tex have been enough for me. If I do open the door to check I will sauce them up or spray them with something. Its not my favorite way to have ribs but I only have them over for BBQ once or twice a year.

Good Luck

03-27-2011, 09:23 AM
Has any one tried cooking a sirloin tip roast in a 1400?