John Thompson ,
Baby Back Ribs

If you are looking for a recipe that is easy to follow and gives you restaurant quality ribs at home, then look no further than these baby back ribs. 

Baby back pork ribs are a great option because they are such a versatile meal. For instance, if you are preparing to entertain your entire extended family and need a dinner that isn’t too labor-intensive, is widely popular among meat-eaters, and has a level of cultural heritage to it (always a great conversation starter at dinner parties), then ribs that fall off the bone are a good choice.

Of course, there is more than one variation of baby back pork ribs, as St Louis rib fans will attest to, so keep reading to find out everything you need to know about smoking baby back ribs.

Baby Back versus Spare and St Louis Ribs

It is important to establish the differences between baby back ribs and St Louis ribs, to avoid any confusion and ensure you aren’t accidentally following the wrong recipe. 

Baby back ribs are cut from where the ribs meet the pig’s spine. The reason they are called ‘baby back’ ribs is because they are cut from the upper spine, where the ribs are smaller. 

Spare ribs, on the other hand, are cut from the pig’s belly, so there is typically more meat on the bones. These are sometimes called St Louis ribs when the cartilage has been removed from the bone. Spare ribs are popular because they are easy to season (thanks to the flatter bones) and they have intramuscular fat, which adds flavor. Spare ribs either have a BBQ sauce or a dry rub to create a distinctive flavor.  

Preparation is Key

If you want to enjoy delicious smoked baby back ribs, then you need to start by removing the membrane (“silver skin”) from the bone side of the ribs.. 

Once this is done, season the ribs on a baking sheet. The exact seasoning ingredients will depend upon your tastes but can include ingredients such as black pepper, garlic powder, hickory salt, paprika, mustard powder or kosher salt. If you are in a more flavorsome mood, try seasoning the ribs with red pepper flakes  and onion powder. Alternatively, you can use a little brown sugar to add sweetness

How to Smoke the Ribs

Smoking the best ribs can be done by complete beginners or those more familiar with baby back ribs recipe. Start by smoking the ribs indirect on the grill (off the heat) or in a preheated oven at 225F for about 120 minutes cook timeuntil a rich mahagony color is achieved.

At this point, spritz the ribs with apple juice, add additional rub, and wrap with aluminum foil to cook for an additional 120 minutes. Unwrap the ribs, baste with your favorite BBQ sauce (like J-TOP’s Thick and Sweet) and place back on the grill or in the oven at 275F until the ribs are fork tender and the sauce is set.

Allow 10 minutes of rest time before slicing and serving the best baby back ribs to your guests.

You will find many of these ingredients and more on Amazon, You can check the nutritional values of each, such as whether they contain vitamin A, potassium, vitamin C, or calcium. You can also check the carbohydrates and saturated fat contents so you can make informed choices on what you and your family are eating.

Now is the ideal time to ignore the kcal and cholesterol of whatever style ribs you chose, and instead enjoy the delicious tender ribs with a smoke flavor and a tasty barbecue sauce.