My Traeger Grilled Pork Ribs are currently #1 on my favorite grill recipes list. These aren’t quick, but they ARE easy. My hearty pork ribs are seasoned with a dry rub, slow smoked for 5 hours, coated with dark brown sugar and cooked with a bottle of hard apple cider to braise for 4 hours, and then gets cooked uncovered right on the grill grates for another hour coated with your favorite barbecue sauce. You’ll never have a better pork rib.
Traeger Grilled Pork Ribs
Is there anybody out there that is a HUGE fan of BBQ ribs like I am? You need to do yourself a favor and make these delicious ribs. These are the kind of ribs that fall off the bone. I don’t know about you, but I like tender meat.
This is the perfect meal to make when you know you’re having a crowd over, and you don’t want to be hovering over the meal while everyone is around. My Traeger Grilled Pork Ribs do take a long time to make, but they are totally worth it!
More great Traeger recipes in my Traeger Recipe Collection! Check it out!
What Are The Best Ribs For Grilling?
- SPARE RIBS are cut from the top portion of the rib cage. They have longer bones, and a very flavorful meat and generally has a longer cooking time. These are very versatile ribs and are made using several different methods including grilling, smoking, and roasting. You will find these ribs with about 11-13 bones per package.
- BABY BACK RIBS are cut from the bottom portion of the rib cage and are meatier than spare ribs. They don’t take as long to cook, and you will find these types of ribs happily being grilled in the northern part of the United States. These ribs have about 10-13 bones per package.
- ST. LOUIS STYLE RIBS are a cut that you will find in the southern part of the United States more often. This term became an official USDA cut in the 1980’s. These are actually spare ribs with the rib tips cut off, as they are a little gristly and have little meat on them. These are famous down south, and are really amazing!
- COUNTRY STYLE PORK RIBS sometimes are considered chops and are cut from the shoulder blade. They have a lot of meat on them and people like these when they don’t want to use their hands to eat ribs. A knife and fork will do the trick for these “ribs”.
Smoked Ribs Rub
Before you start with any large piece of meat on the grill, you need to rub it, and rub it good.
I like to use my homemade BBQ Rub. It hits all the right notes for an all-purpose barbecue rub, helps pull on all of that great smoky flavor, and just the right amount of heat.
You’ll find a bunch of pre-made rubs that you might like for your ribs. Experiment a little and see what works best for you!
How Long Does It Take To Smoke Ribs?
These particular are smoked on the wood-pellet grill for 5 hours. I know it seems like a lot, but it is a thing you are going to want to try.
I know if you do any googling, you’re going to come across one of the most popular smoked rib recipe out there, the 3-2-1 ribs method. That calls for a 3-hour smoke, a 2-hour braise wrapped tightly in foil, and then 1 hour on the grill with barbecue sauce (or variations of that).
I’ve seen great things done with the 3-2-1, but personally, I MUCH prefer my 5-4-1 method in taste and tenderness. Try for yourself and let me know which you prefer!
Tips for Smoking Ribs
- Don’t rush it! Great barbecue takes a long time. Deal with it and just buckle up for a long drive. You can’t escape it, and once you taste these, you won’t want to either.
- Peel off the membrane! Most ribs have a membrane that runs all along the bottom of the bones. You’ll want to get rid of that or it can make things less-than-ideal. Some grocers pre-peel their baby back ribs, and some don’t. When in doubt, give it a shot.
- Make at least 1/2 rack per person. A full rack from grown men and women wouldn’t be too crazy. These are amazing, and you’re going to want extras.
- You can totally make these ahead of time. Just save the final grill with the barbecue sauce for right before you search them for the best results.
What Should I Make With Smoked Baby Back Ribs?
Traditionally people like to make coleslaw with their ribs, and I agree!
My Homemade Coleslaw Recipe will pair perfectly with this fall-off-the-bone rib recipe.
Since we are going really all out for this meal, you need to also make my jalapeno cheddar cornbread muffins. Because you need a little health food in this dinner, steam up some broccoli or serve it with my grilled vegetable pasta salad. You will wow your whole family with this recipe.
Turn your grill to smoke.
Remove the membrane from the rib, and then coat with the barbecue rub.
Smoke for 5 hours between 125-175 degrees.
Turn the temperature of the grill up to 225 degrees.
Remove the ribs from the grill, place them into a large high-sided baking pan that's been sprayed with cooking spray (you'll probably have to cut them into half racks), pour in a bottle of hard apple cider. Rub the brown sugar all over the top of the ribs after they are placed into the pan.
Cover the pan tightly with tin foil and place back on the grill for another 4 hours.
After 4 hours, remove the foil and place the ribs directly on the grill grate, turning the temperature up to 300 degree. Brush with barbecue sauce 2-3 times over the next hour, before removing from the grill and serving. The ribs should be fall-off-the-bone tender at this point. You might be serving boneless ribs. You won't be disappointed.