Sunday, April 10, 2022

Smoked Beef Ribs + Video

Smoked beef ribs are melt-in-your-mouth tender with a gorgeous bark on the outside. Make some for your cookout or enjoy them all by yourself!

Impress your guests with this mouth-watering display of smoked beef short ribs - they’ll have no idea it was so easy to make! Serve it along with all of your favorite BBQ sides.

Don’t have all day? I’ve got an amazing recipe for baby back ribs smothered in homemade bourbon barbecue sauce that you should try!

Smoked Beef Ribs stacked on a cutting board

Smoked Beef Ribs

This smoked ribs recipe is one of my favorites - it’s a summertime barbecue staple at my house, and I never get tired of it!

Plus, smoked beef short ribs are so easy to prepare. All you need is the beef, my 5 ingredient dry rub, and a bit of patience while it smokes. And that’s it!

My simple dry rub recipe is a combination of salt, pepper, onion, garlic, and paprika. These flavors infuse the meat with sharp, smoky, and savory flavors down to the bone.

And by smoking short ribs rather than baking or grilling, these spices form an absolutely remarkable crust that makes a beautiful presentation. But more than that, it keeps all of the juice and moisture in the beef.

Can’t wait for barbecue season? Keep these beer and smokehouse burger recipes on standby, and take a second to browse my top 15 BBQ ideas for the summer.

Keep reading to learn how to smoke beef ribs that are tender, juicy, and so easy to prepare right at home!

Smoked Beef Ribs ingredients

What Are Short Ribs?

As the name implies, these beef ribs are shorter than those used for steaks. They come from the “chuck” section of the cow. These cuts are full of fat and collagen. As a result, smoked beef short ribs are absolutely packed with flavor after cooking.

When searching for the best cut in the grocery store, keep an eye out for a pack that is marbled and as meaty as possible. And, of course, be sure to choose bone-in for extra flavor and even cooking.

Tips for Smoking Short Ribs

Smoking short ribs is all about the cut, the dry rub, and giving the meat time to cook. The aroma of the meat cooking might be too much to handle, but I promise it’s worth it when you have silky, juicy beef at the end of the day.

Preheating is an important step - give at least 30 minutes to get to 225 degrees. Don’t skip that step because you think that 9 hours of smoking will be enough!

You also need to pick the right wood for smoking. Now, this all comes down to preference. For example, my favorite wood chips are a blend of oak, maple, and hickory. If you’ve never smoked meat before, I recommend trying out a few different wood chips to find the flavor you like best!

It’s also crucial to let the smoked beef ribs rest so that all of the spices and moisture don’t come leaking out as soon as you slice into them.

seasoned smoked beef short ribs

Serving Suggestions

Add a big bowl of your favorite salad, whether it’s something simple like Caesar or a bit more robust with a variety of toppings.

Fresh dinner rolls and a plate of veggies with dip are usually a winner with this smoked beef ribs recipe as well.

If you’ll be feeding a crowd, include any of your favorite cookout sides like potato or pasta salad, corn on the cob, and fresh fruit.

Kitchen Tools You Will Need

  • Smoker - Wood pellets varieties allow extra flavor to be infused into whatever you’re smoking.

smoking short ribs on the smoker

Smoked Beef Ribs FAQ

Can I just pat the dry rub on instead?

Unfortunately, no. If you just sprinkle it on or gently pat it, it will fall off anytime you move the meat around.

By working it into the meat, you get it to adhere better to the surface and ensure the maximum amount of flavor.

How long does it take to smoke beef ribs?

My recipe for perfect smoked beef ribs takes a total of 9 hours: 7 hours smoking on low, and 2 hours at a higher heat.

Smoking short ribs helps the meat cook through and allows a thick, smoky, and crisp bark to form on the surface of the meat. It also keeps the meat moist and tender, rather than dry and chewy.

smoked beef ribs on a cutting board

I see a shiny, blueish reflection on the ribs - is this normal?

Yes, this is called silverskin. Often, butchers will remove this before packaging the meat for sale, but it can be missed.

In that case, you will need to remove it yourself. Left on, it prevents the spices and smoke from properly infusing the meat, and it has an unpleasant texture when cooked.

To remove silver skin, slide a butter knife between the membrane and the bones to separate the two.

Then, firmly grip one edge with a paper towel and peel it away. It should come off in one neat strip.

How long do smoked beef ribs last in the fridge?

Leftovers can be kept covered for 3 to 5 days. Reheat in a low-temperature oven with some beef broth or extra barbecue sauce until warmed through.


smoked beef short ribs with corn

With love from our simple kitchen to yours.

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Smoked Beef Ribs on a cutting board

Yield: 6-8
Author: Donna Elick
Smoked Beef Ribs

Smoked Beef Ribs

Smoked beef ribs are melt-in-your-mouth tender with a gorgeous bark on the outside. Make some for your cookout or enjoy them all by yourself!
Prep time: 5 MinCook time: 9 HourTotal time: 9 H & 5 M


  • 4-bone rack beef short ribs (about 4-5 pounds)
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon minced onion
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika


  1. Preheat the smoker to 225°F. Choose your favorite wood, I am using my favorite blend of oak, maple and hickory on my pellet smoker.
  2. In a small bowl mix all the rub ingredients together. Set aside.
  3. Remove the ribs from packaging and pat dry with a paper towel.
  4. Sprinkle the rub evenly on top of the rib. Rub it in so it won’t fall when you turn it around.
  5. Repeat step 4 for all sides.
  6. Add ribs to the smoker.
  7. Cook until you reach an internal temperature of 160°F, for this cook it was about 7 hours. Time may vary if the ribs are smaller.
  8. Once you have reached the internal temperature of 160 degrees, you should have a good bark develop and it will be a nice milk chocolate color. Then increase your BBQ temperature to 275-degree F for an additional 2 hours.
  9. Once the temperature is at 200-degrees F, an additional 2 hours, we pulled the ribs off the heat. It is a nice dark chocolate color and a good bark.
  10. Wrap the ribs in foil and let them rest for 45-60 minutes.
  11. Slice the ribs and serve!

Smoked Beef Ribs piled on a cutting board

Originally published May 2021, updated and republished April 2022

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  1. Confused about the total time. Smoke for 11 hours total? Step 9 is confusing. After cooking 2 hours at 275 then turn down to 200 and cook for 2 more hours?
    Looks delicious!

  2. I believe the she is saying after 2 hours at 275 the internal temperature of the meat reaches 200, they pulled them off the grill.


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