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How much longer cooking time for St. Louis ribs?

 
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beachsands
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Joined: 16 Mar 2007
Posts: 47

PostPosted: Wed Apr 16 08 8:47 am    Post subject: How much longer cooking time for St. Louis ribs? Reply with quote

I just smoked four racks of St. Louis ribs for six hours. One rack was tender and had great flavor, but the other three racks were still undercooked. Kind of chewy. Do i need to cook them for a lot longer or is another hour going do it? Do you ever need to cook them for 8 hours or longer?


I rubbed them and let them sit in the cooler over night.

I kept the temperature between 225 and 250 the entire cook.

Thanks,
Joel
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lantern
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Joined: 26 Jul 2007
Posts: 2001
Location: Marion,NC

PostPosted: Wed Apr 16 08 8:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's usually a question of weight....and then sometimes it's down to the temp differences on your rack.


I can say one thing for sure. You can never cook to time on anything. With butts and brisket its easier to cook to temp, but with ribs it's best just to get in there and feel them.

After a while you'll know fairly close to when you need to peek at your ribs at certain weights.


Oh....when I say weight I mean weight after trimming. Thickness plays a big part too. If I'm cooking ribs that have the thick part close to where the chine bone was I may cut the small halves off and place them on a separate rack so I have sections of my cooker coming done at the same time. Gets me out of the smoker faster since I don't have to hunt down all the small haves.
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lantern
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Joined: 26 Jul 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 16 08 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dangit, forgot to simply answer your question. Spares can go anywhere between 5.5 and 8 hours. I haven't had one go over 8 but it wouldn't surprise me. Opening your pit will extend your cook as well. I know ya want those reebs real bad, but each time you open that door you can add at least 30 minutes to the total cook time.
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beachsands
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17 08 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So how often can I open it to spritz or mop the ribs? I would imagine that they would dry out if left to cook for 4-6 hours without some moisture. Or am I incorrect on this thinking?


Joel


Last edited by beachsands on Thu Apr 17 08 10:12 am; edited 1 time in total
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1MoreFord
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Joined: 28 Jun 2005
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Location: N. Little Rock & Hot Springs, Arkansas

PostPosted: Thu Apr 17 08 9:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As Lantern said. It usually depends on weight but there can be other factors. Large, flat bones indicate an older hog. They're tougher and take longer.

Try to buy ribs that are as close to the same weight as possible and look at those bones if you can.
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beachsands
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17 08 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's kind of difficult to assess the ribs that closely as I am doing 2-3 cases a day once the BBQ season gets underway here in Pennsylvania. I probably will do the droop test, look at the bone pull back and maybe try and turn a bone or two.


Joel
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lantern
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Joined: 26 Jul 2007
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Location: Marion,NC

PostPosted: Thu Apr 17 08 8:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The toothpick test is a good way as well. Sticking a toothpick between the ribs and if it passes through without much resistance you're done.




Also, I use spritzing as a layer of flavor instead of a drying deterrent. I don't know the properties of your smoker, but mine keeps a decent humidity from the juices from the meat so if I were to never spritz they are plenty moist from the environment and the rendered collagen from the low and slow process. If I do spritz I'm more or less adding back the moisture I lost when I opened the door as well as adding whatever flavor I wanted.

If I spritz I don't do it until the last 2 hours of the smoke. Once every half hour. Those cooks usually take about and hour longer.
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