When cooked right, Smoked Beef Plate Ribs are tender, beefy, and mouthwatering. These flavorful beef plate ribs are seasoned with salt, pepper, and garlic and pack a generous helping of meat per bone. Each of these smoked beef ribs will feed two people, as they can weigh 1-2 pounds each. Wow! Get your smoker going; we’re about to have a good time.Jump to Recipe
What are beef plate ribs?
Beef plate ribs (or beef spare ribs) come from the belly portion of the animal. This cut should not be confused with beef back ribs which are located near the spine. Beef plate ribs are well-marbled, thick slabs of meat nestled around the bone. Butchers will cut these ribs into thin strips across the bone to form flanken ribs (popular in Korean cuisine) or slice them into smaller sections creating short ribs. Beef plate ribs lend themselves well to low and slow cooking. This makes them a great candidate for hot smoke cooking, braising, and fast cooking (especially the flanken ribs).
Beef plate ribs are easier to find here in central Texas, but they are available elsewhere through bulk grocery stores, online meat purveyors like Snake River Farms, or your local butcher.
Ingredients for smoked beef plate ribs:
- 3-bone beef plate ribs
- Black pepper
- Granulated Garlic (substitute with garlic powder)
- Apple juice or Bourbon Spritz
- Spray bottle
Wood Suggestions: Oak, Apple, Hickory or Alder
Making Smoked Beef Plate Ribs:
- Trim off the fat cap on the meat portion of the ribs. Some butchers will trim it down a bit, but it’s a good idea to trim off the silver skin and any thick knobs of fatty tissue. Fat acts as a barrier to smoke. Unlike intra-muscular fat (marbling), it will not keep the meat moist and can become rubbery.
- After trimming, blot with paper towels and brush with a little oil or slather with 1- 1 1/2 tablespoons of yellow mustard (optional).
- Combine 4 teaspoons of salt with two teaspoons black pepper and 1 teaspoon of granulated garlic. Season beef plate ribs well with rub. Let stand at room temperature until your smoker is up to temp.
- Prepare your grill or smoker for 250 degrees F. Add your choice of wood. See above for wood recommendations. Plan on a 6-hour cooking time, with a rib doneness temperature of 200-205 degrees F. Have a reliable instant meat thermometer or temperature probe handy. You will need it!
- Once your smoker comes up to temperature, place the beef ribs onto the grates, bone side down. If you have room, set a drip pan underneath the grates under where the ribs will be. Close the lid and let the ribs go for 3 hours.
- During this time, the bark will set up. Leave it alone for three hours, but watch the temperature to ensure your smoker is not going too far above 250 degrees.
- After three hours, examine these smoked beef ribs. You will notice that the bark has set up, but you might also see dry patches forming. This is a good indicator that you need to spritz the ribs with a little beef broth or preferred liquid. I recommend using room temperature liquid, so the the temperature of the meat remains stable.
- Spray apple juice (or pickle juice, or apple cider vinegar) onto the ribs. Close the lid and continue cooking.
- You’ll also notice that the meat has started to pull back from the bones, and the bones will protrude more. That’s normal!
- Typically, I don’t wrap smoked beef ribs in butcher paper, or at all. Believe it or not, leaving them unwrapped shaves time off of the total cooking time. However, if you’d like to wrap them after they reach 165 degree mark, be aware that they will take longer to come up to 200 degrees.
The temperature of the meat will stall during the cooking process. I do not recommend wrapping these smoked beef ribs. Just give them some time. Keep in mind that the cooking process can take 6 hours or more.
- The smoked beef ribs are done once they have reached an internal temperature of 200-205 degrees.
- Use heat-resistant gloves to remove the beef plate ribs from the smoker. Place onto a large cutting board and lightly tent with aluminum foil. Let the ribs rest for 30 minutes.
- Use a sharp knife to cut through the ribs and serve. Some folks also like to remove the bones and slice the meat. The choice is all yours.
Storing Leftover Smoked Ribs:
Place your leftover ribs into an airtight container and store them in the refrigerator for 4-5 days. Reheat in the oven at 300 degrees F. If you liked this recipe, try our Pellet Grill Smoked Brisket!
Serve these amazing ribs with some of our favorite side dishes:
Smoked Beef Plate Ribs
- 1 beef ribs 3-Bone Plate Rib Rack
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 4 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons black pepper
- 1 teaspoon granulated garlic or garlic powder
- 1/2 cup apple juice for spritzing
- Prepare your smoker for 250 degrees F. Add wood of choice.
- Trim away the silver skin and knobs of fat from the ribs. Blot dry, and brush with oil.
- Combine salt, pepper, and garlic. Season ribs thoroughly with the mixture. Both sides and edges.
- Once the smoker is up to temperature, place the ribs bone-side down onto the grates. Close the lid and let it cook for 3 hours undisturbed. Check the temperature of your smoker, and adjust if needed.
- After 3 hours, spritz with apple juice (or liquid of choice). Close the lid and continue cooking for an additional 2-3 hours.
- Once the beef ribs reach an internal temperature between 200-205 degrees F, they are done.
- Remove the ribs from the smoker and place them onto a clean cutting board. Tent with aluminum
Photos by: Sabrina Baksh/derrickriches.com