Learn how to cook ribs and you’ll be the hero who makes the star dish of every event—from summer cookouts to cool-weather tailgating parties. Here’s the game plan: Make these rookie-friendly Easy BBQ Ribs, pull up a chair and read the tips below while you eat. There’s also a ribs 101 video to watch, and a wide-ranging variety of ribs recipes to choose from when you’re ready to make more.
There’s not just one way to learn how to cook ribs. Depending on the season or the equipment you have on hand you may need to know how to grill ribs on an outdoor girl or prepare them in the oven or on a stovetop. We’ll go over both scenarios. If your plan is to start outdoors, check out these marinating and grilling tips for steak, seafood and chicken (as well as ribs). And if you’d prefer to keep it indoors, take a look through our slow-cooker recipe collection.
Different Types of Ribs
First things first, there are many types of ribs, so you’ll want to be sure you select the right ones for each recipe. Three you’ll want to keep in mind are:
- Beef short ribs have layers of fat and meat and are usually cooked slowly in the oven. Try this ethnic-inspired entrée, Korean Beef Short Ribs
- Pork spare ribs are somewhat meatier and come from the lower portion of the ribs and breastbone of a hog. Each slab ranges from 2 to 4 lb. Check out this Sweet Mesquite BBQ Spareribs Recipe.
- Baby back ribs (also known as pork loin ribs) which are less meaty than spare ribs. Each slab typically weighs between 1-1/4 to 2-1/4 lb. Get started with this recipe for Easy BBQ Baby Back Ribs.
How to Prep Ribs for Grilling
- Ribs have a membrane on the bone side that should be removed before cooking for easy eating and to allow marinades to penetrate the meat.
- When grilling ribs, keep your grill in tip-top shape with our BBQ Tips.
- Get ready for grilling season with these Essential BBQ Utensils.
- Before cooking ribs, marinate them in KRAFT Dressing in the fridge for up to 24 hours to add delicious flavor and help tenderize them before cooking.
- If marinades aren’t your style, you can alternately rub them with a dry spice rub for a perfect way to add flavor to leaner ribs, such as baby back ribs.
How to Grill Ribs
- When grilling ribs, think “low and slow!” Grill ribs slowly on medium heat to avoid burning and to help keep them tender.
- Plan on a cooking time of 1 hour to 1 hour 30 min., depending on the size and type of ribs used.
- To speed up the cooking time when grilling ribs, simmer the ribs in boiling water for 20 min. before adding them to the grill. Then, brush ribs with your favorite KRAFT or BULL’S-EYE Barbecue Sauce and grill 5 to 10 min. or until sauce is caramelized, turning and brushing occasionally with additional sauce.
- When grilling ribs, the indirect method of cooking is the best method to use. This means the ribs are not cooked directly over the heat source. If using a gas grill, turn on only one side of the grill. Or, if using a charcoal grill, push the charcoals to one side of the grill. The covered grill then acts like an oven.
- For a complete step-by-step video on how to grill ribs, explore BBQ Ribs Basics.
How to Cook Ribs in the Oven or Stove
- When cooking ribs in the oven, place ribs on rack of a broiler pan.
- Brush with KRAFT or BULL’S-EYE Barbecue Sauce.
- Then, bake at 350°F for 1 hour 15 min, or until ribs have reached a minimum internal temperature of 145°F, turning and brushing occasionally with additional barbecue sauce.
- Remember: Ribs are not just for grilling. Try our recipe for Braised Pork Ribs for a simple recipe for cooking ribs on top of the stove.
Favority BBQ Ribs Recipes
Now that you know how to cook ribs, you can explore some of My Food and Family’s favorite BBQ ribs recipes. There’s no shortage of great rib recipes in our collection, but here are five of our favorites to get you started.