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Smoked Gochujang Ribs

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Our smoked gochujang ribs recipe marries the rich, umami flavors of Korean gochujang with the tenderness of perfectly smoked pork ribs. The sweet heat and captivating aromas make this a showstopping main course for any cookout or family meal. 

Smoked Gochujang Ribs
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Gochujang paste adds a flavorful twist to the traditional BBQ sauce by infusing it with a unique blend of heat, sweet, and savory. This trending condiment is made from red chili peppers, fermented soybeans, and salt and imparts a distinctive flavor to tomato-based barbecue sauce. 

Please note that we are using the 2-2-1 cooking method for this gochujang ribs recipe. So plan on between 4-5 hours of cooking time. If you’d like to use spare ribs instead, use 1/3-1/2 cup rub and plan on 5-6 hours of cooking time.

Recipe ingredients

  • 1 rack of baby back ribs
  • Korean Spice Rub
  • Kosher salt
  • Gochujang BBQ Sauce, plus extra for serving
  • Apple juice (for spritzing)
  • Green onions, finely chopped (or chilies for the spice lovers!)
  • Toasted sesame seeds
  • Pink butcher paper (optional)

Wood recommendations: A mild to moderate smoke for this recipe works best, so apple, cherry, or pecan wood is your best bet.

Making the sauce

Gochujang BBQ sauce is relatively easy to make. We recommend making it the night before and storing it in the refrigerator. That way, the delicious flavors will have time to settle, and the sauce will taste amazing the next day.

ribs on the smoker-gochujang
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Gochujang ribs in the grill or smoker

  • Remove thawed baby back ribs from the packaging, and blot the excess moisture with paper towels.
  • Next, remove the membrane from the bone side of the ribs. 
  • Flip the baby back ribs over so that the bone side is facing upward. Make a slit in the silver skin with a sharp knife. Next, grab ahold of the cut piece with a folded paper towel. Pull up and gently pull off the membrane.
  • Flip the rack of baby backs over, and coat the meat section with salt. Apply the BBQ rub evenly to the ribs. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. You can do this step up to 4 hours in advance, but please store the ribs in the refrigerator if there are more than 30 minutes between seasoning them and cooking them.
  • Preheat your pellet grill to 225 degrees F.
  • Place the seasoned ribs bone-side down on your grill or smoker, close the lid, and cook for 90 minutes.
  • After this time, you’ll notice the bark forming on the ribs. If you notice any dry patches, it’s time to spritz with apple juice.
  • Fill your food-safe spray bottle with room-temperature apple juice, and lightly mist the ribs.
  • Close the lid once more, and let cook gochujang ribs until they reach an internal temperature of 160 degrees F.
  • Using heat-resistant gloves, remove the bay back ribs and place them onto a large sheet of pink butcher paper. Gently wrap, and place them back on the grill or smoker. This step is optional.

Saucing and more

slab of korean pork ribs
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  • When the ribs have an internal temp of 185 degrees, unwrap them. Place them back on the grill and brush them with Gochujang BBQ sauce. Let them cook for another 20-30 minutes.
  • Ribs are done once they reach between 195-200 degrees F.
  • Remove gochujang ribs from the heat and place them onto a cutting board. Let them rest for 10-15 minutes before carving.
  • Garnish ribs with toasted sesame seeds and sliced green onions (or chilies), and serve with extra Gochujang BBQ sauce on the side. 

Oven method: Yes, you can certainly cook these delicious Korean-style ribs in your oven! Follow our informative recipe guide for best results.

Storing Leftover Gochujang Ribs

Store leftover gochujang ribs in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 days, or freeze for up to 3 months in vacuum-sealed bags. Reheat in the oven or microwave.

BBQ ribs with chilies
derrickriches.com

Build your menu

Plan on serving two smoked gochujang ribs per person, a few delicious sides, and a dessert. If you have big eaters in the group, consider making 2 racks of ribs.

Smoked Gochujang Ribs

Smoked Gochujang Ribs

Our smoked gochujang ribs recipe combines the rich, umami flavors of Korean gochujang with the tenderness of perfectly smoked pork ribs. The sweet heat and captivating aromas make this a showstopping main course for any cookout or family meal.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American BBQ, Fusion
Keyword: Korean BBQ Ribs, Smoked gochujang ribs
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours 30 minutes
Total Time: 5 hours
Servings: 4
Calories: 313kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 rack of baby back ribs
  • 1/4 cup Korean Spice Rub
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup Gochujang BBQ Sauce plus extra for serving
  • 1/3 cup apple juice for spritzing
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced (sub with sliced chilies)
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
  • Pink butcher paper optional

Instructions

  • Prepare sauce and rub according to recipe instructions. Click on the link for recipes.
  • Remove thawed baby back ribs from the packaging, and blot the excess moisture with paper towels.
  • Next, remove the membrane from the bone side of the ribs.
  • Flip the baby back ribs over so that the bone side is facing upward. Make a slit in the silver skin with a sharp knife. Next, grab ahold of the cut piece with a folded paper towel. Pull up and gently pull off the membrane.
  • Flip the rack of baby backs over, and coat the meat section with salt. Apply the BBQ rub evenly to the ribs. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. You can do this step up to 4 hours in advance, but please store the ribs in the refrigerator if there are more than 30 minutes between seasoning them and cooking them.
  • Preheat your pellet grill to 225 degrees F.
  • Place the seasoned ribs bone-side down on your grill or smoker, close the lid, and cook for 90 minutes.
  • After this time, you’ll notice the bark forming on the ribs. If you notice any dry patches, it’s time to spritz with apple juice.
  • Fill your food-safe spray bottle with room-temperature apple juice, and lightly mist the ribs.
  • Close the lid once more, and let cook ribs until they reach an internal temperature of 160 degrees F.
  • Using heat-resistant gloves, remove the bay back ribs and place them onto a large sheet of pink butcher paper. Gently wrap, and place them back on the grill or smoker. This step is optional.
  • When the ribs have an internal temp of 185 degrees, unwrap them. Place them back on the grill and brush them with Gochujang BBQ sauce. Let them cook for another 20-30 minutes.
  • Ribs are done once they reach between 195-200 degrees F.
  • Remove ribs from the heat and place them onto a cutting board. Let them rest for 10-15 minutes before carving.
  • Garnish ribs with toasted sesame seeds and sliced green onions, and serve with extra Gochujang BBQ sauce on the side.
  • Store leftover ribs in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 days, or freeze for up to 3 months in vacuum-sealed bags. Reheat in the oven or microwave.

Nutrition

Calories: 313kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 49mg | Sodium: 910mg | Potassium: 533mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 21g | Vitamin A: 447IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 301mg | Iron: 7mg
Derrick Riches
Derrick Riches

I began writing about Barbecue & Grilling in 1997 with one mission, to help the backyard chef have the best experience possible.

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