Friday, April 21, 2006

Smoking Ribs - Wrap or Not?

Q: Just got a trailer wood smoker, on ribs do you wrap them in foil to start and take it off the last few hours or what is best, and is a water pan needed on a wood smoker?

A: I usually do not wrap my ribs at all however some do. The ones that do wrap follow what is known as the 3-2-1 method which just means they smoke them unwrapped for the first 3 hours or so at 225 to 250 degrees then they wrap them in foil with a splash of apple juice for the next 2 hours.

The last hour or so they unwrap them and let them finish cooking and firm them up a little.

I tend to just rub them real good with my "Jeff's Naked Rib Rub" and then I smoke them meaty side up at 225 for around 6 hours or until the meat starts pulling back from the bone about 1/4 inch or so.

I usually try to take them up to around 170 degrees to get them tender.For extra tenderness, I will sometimes wrap them in foil after they are done cooking/smoking and hold them in an insulated cooler for a couple of hours and they come out just melt in your mouth good!

The main use of a water pan is to help regulate temperature in the pit.. most big wood smokers do not have water pans but some folks just lay a pan of water in the smoke chamber right in front of where the heat enters the chamber.

Visit for hundreds of great tutorials and guides on smoking meat.

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