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Let’s Talk Beef Ribs

Let’s talk beef ribs. Nothing beats beef shorties on the smoker.  The flavor is fantastic and they are pretty much beef popsicles. With beef baby backs you are left trying to scrape some meat off of somewhere. Not the case with short ribs. Those meaty marbled bad boys are custom made to stay flavorful and juicy on the smoker. When you smoke these hunks of bovine awesome you need to show a little love, TLC and patience.  Your finished product should get to about 200 internal temperature like brisket.  

Stuff you need for great smoked beef short ribs:

Prepping Your Ribs:

  1. Lay ribs on a cookie sheet or foil pan. This keeps things clean and they will be ready to carry to the smoker when you are done
  2. Do a decent trimming job, but don’t put half of your meat in the junk pile.  Trim off the silver skin. You can trim some of the outside fat if you wish, but don’t go overboard Leave as fat equals flavor.  Pro tip- Use a very sharp knife and use paper towels to get a good grip on the rib while trimming. Also if smoking as a rack leave the membrane on these. Unlike pork ribs they need the membrane to stay together.
  3. Rub both sides of ribs lightly with olive oil to help your rub stick to the meat. 
  4. Coat both sides of the ribs with a 50/50 mix of Fat Boy Steak Rub and Fat Boy Angus Rub
  5. Let ribs sit until the look wet. This lets you know the rub has begun to penetrate the meat.  

Prep Your Smoker:

We don’t care if you burn sticks, pellets or charcoal. We have done these in uprights, drums, pellet grills, you name it. Set up your cooker to maintain about 225. We recommend pecan, hickory, or mesquite wood for this cook.  Make sure to follow the directions for whatever smoker you decide to use and make sure to pre-heat before putting the ribs on for at least 30 minutes.

Two Ways to Smoke:

The natural smoke is just to let them go until they reach about 190 internal temperature which will take around 5 hours depending on your ribs.  Start checking for tenderness.  When a fork or probe slices in like butter on a hot day you are home.  The ribs should be at around 200 when this happens.  Some also like to use a water pan during this method to help regulate temp and keep the ribs juicy.

The foil pan method is also used by a lot of folks. Smoke the ribs to an internal temperature of about 160.  At this point pull them from the smoker, place them in a foil pan, add a cup of beef broth and seal the pan with foil.  Put them back on the smoker for about 2 hours until the internal temperature reaches about 200.  

For both methods make sure to use a quality temperature probe to monitor both the meat and the grill temperature. These allow you to monitor from a distance such as the couch, garage or anywhere else in your house you may have beer located. When finished and the internal temp is about 200 and you like the texture then pull from the smoker and let them rest for a few minutes. This allows the juices to be sucked back into the meat. After resting plate, serve and enjoy bovine bliss.