Flavorful Smoked St. Louis Ribs are incredibly easy to make in your smoker using the 3-2-1 smoking method to seal in the wonderful juices! The ribs are tender, tasty, and absolutely packed with great flavors when combined with my easy pork dry rub!
Succulent and savory, my smoked St. Louis ribs are mouthwatering and meaty! They always come out super tender, juicy, and wonderfully smoky, with a classic flavor you can count on.
If you are a rib lover like me, this hearty ribs recipe will have you thrilled for dinner tonight! Your family will love having these tasty pork ribs served up any night of the week!
Keep in mind, the process of smoking ribs takes patience, but you will understand why they are worth the wait. Using the “3-2-1” smoking method infuses the meat so deliciously, and there is just no fast way to get the ribs to result so remarkably.
Most of the ingredients you will need for this ribs recipe are packed with zesty flavor, making the ribs not only tasty but tender. All of the spices blend together to create a savory sensation that will have everyone asking for seconds!
This recipe makes 4 hearty servings. Adjust the recipe accordingly if you choose to make more ribs.
- St. Louis Style Pork Ribs – Ask your butcher if you are not familiar with selecting pork ribs.
My easy pork rub adds wonderful flavor and includes the following ingredients: brown sugar, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, mustard powder, and ground sage.
- Apple Cider Vinegar – A nice tang for your taste buds that also helps to soften the pork meat while keeping your ribs juicy and moist too.
- Melted Butter – The perfect flavorful finishing touch to so many things! It adds richness and moisture to your smoked ribs.
- BBQ Sauce (optional) – If you like your ribs slathered, grab your fave BBQ sauce!
💭 Tips & Recipe Notes
- Get started plenty early so your smoked ribs are ready for suppertime.
- Using a smoker is fun but be sure you know how your smoker functions before getting into the recipe. Follow directions and use care and caution.
- It's controversial to rinse your ribs after removing them from the plastic packaging they typically are sold in. I prefer to do this anyway. To avoid cross-contamination work in an area that is easily sanitized and is big enough to keep any 'splatter' restricted.
Best types of wood for smoking pork
Any of these woods are great for smoking pork or chicken of any cut. Choosing a complimentary flavor for your smoking brings out the very vest flavors in your meats!
- Apple Wood - My top pick for pork.
- Alder Wood - The subtle and delicate sweetness of alder wood is a great for smoking pork. It's also a top choice for smoking salmon.
- Hickory - one of my favorites, a flavor that is associated with Memphis BBQ.
- Sugar Maple - Adds a slight sweetness.
- Pecan - Subtle flavors that work well with pork.
- Oak - Is a good choice for earthy tones. Pecan and oak flavors are both favorites in Texas BBQ.
- Fruit woods - Orange and peach have a citrus hint to them and pear is a close flavor to apple.
🔪 Step-by-Step Instructions
Making your smoked St. Louis Ribs is not difficult, but it will take some time. As the meat cooks for hours, it becomes unbelievably juicy and tender with a delightfully crisp bark!
3-2-1 Smoking Method
- Prep your smoker. Preheat your smoker to 225 degrees F (107 degrees C) according to the manufacturer instructions.
- Season with dry rub. In a small bowl, combine all the pork dry rub ingredients then apply rub liberally over both sides of the ribs with your hands.
- Smoke uncovered for 3 hours. Place your ribs into the smoker with the bone side down. You can compress or 'scrunch' the ribs together which helps to keep the juices in. Allow your pork ribs to smoke for 3 hours.
- Wrap the ribs. Remove the ribs from the smoker. Using aluminum foil or butcher paper, wrap the ribs meat side down in a parcel, but before sealing shut, pour 1 tablespoon melted butter and 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar over the ribs. *Use additional foil to seal completely as needed.
- Smoked wrapped for 2 hours. Place the wrapped ribs back in the smoker with the bone side up and allow to smoke covered for 2 more hours at 225 degrees F (107 degrees C).
- Unwrap the ribs. Remove the ribs from the smoker and unwrap from the aluminum foil.
- Apply barbecue sauce. (Optional) Coat the ribs generously with your choice of BBQ sauce.
- Smoked uncovered for 1 hour. Put the ribs back in the smoker bone side down for 1 hour at 225 degrees F (107 degrees C).
- Serve. Remove from the smoker and enjoy!
When your ribs are ready, you can serve them up right away. Slice with a sharp knife and enjoy them while they're hot!
Some of my top picks as sides to serve with your pork ribs include milk butter boiled corn on the cob, ground beef and bacon baked beans, smoked baked potatoes, smoked mac and cheese, and savory jalapeno cheddar scones!
🥡 Storing & Reheating
Allow your smoked pork ribs to cool completely. Once cooled, you can store your leftover St. Louis ribs in the refrigerator for up to 4 days in an airtight plastic container or wrapped securely in aluminum foil.
Use freezer safe plastic storage containers or a double layer of heavy-duty aluminum foil to store in the freezer for up 3 months. Place frozen pork ribs in the refrigerator to thaw completely before reheating.
Reheat your ribs low-and-slow. Use aluminum foil to reheat them in the oven at 300 degrees F (149 degrees C) with some additional liquid like beef broth or beer to keep them moist.
Yes! If in a rush to get your ribs cooked just enough takes about 2 hours in the smoker at 225 degrees F, but make sure the internal temperature is approximately 190 degrees F (88 degrees C).
The easiest way to tell your ribs are fully cooked when smoking is once the meat begins to pull away from the bone. You can also lift the rack of ribs at the center point, they should fall into a 'U' shape and begin to split.
Smoked St Louis Ribs
- 1 Rack St Louis Style Pork Ribs
Pork Rib Rub
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp each, salt & pepper
- ½ Tbsp paprika
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp dry mustard powder
- ½ tsp ground sage
- 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 Tbsp butter (melted)
- ¼ cup BBQ sauce
3-2-1 Smoking Method
- Preheat smoker to 225 degrees F (107 degrees C).
- In a small bowl combine all the rub ingredients then apply rub liberally over both sides of the ribs .
- Place your ribs into the smoker with the bone side down and allow to smoke for 3 hours.
- Remove ribs from smoker. Using aluminum foil wrap the ribs meat side down in a parcel but before sealing pour the melted butter and apple cider vinegar over the ribs. Use an extra sheet of foil to seal completely as needed.
- Place wrapped ribs back in the smoker bone side up and allow to smoke covered for 2 hours at 225 degrees F (107 degrees C).
- Remove ribs from the smoker and remove foil.
- (optional) Coat with your choice of BBQ sauce.
- Put the ribs back in the smoker bone side down for 1 hour at 225 degrees F (107 degrees C).
Angela is an at home chef that developed a passion for all things cooking and baking at a young age in her Grandma's kitchen. After many years in the food service industry, she now enjoys sharing all of her family favorite recipes and creating tasty dinner and amazing dessert recipes here at Bake It With Love!