To make ribs on a Weber Kettle, light your charcoal and heat your grill to 225°F. Add your seasoned ribs over indirect heat, and adjust your lower vent. Once your grill reaches 250°F, adjust your top vent, then allow the ribs to smoke until they reach an internal temperature of 205°F.
Best Method for Making Smoked Ribs in a Weber Kettle
To smoke ribs on a charcoal grill, the most important part is setting up the grill using one of three methods:
- Two-zone fire using the Minion Method. This involves setting up the grill for indirect cooking by dividing the coals into two halves. One half is used for direct heat, while the other is left unlit and used for indirect heat.
- The Charcoal Snake. This method involves arranging lit coals in a long, snake-like shape. The coals are lit at one end of the snake and allowed to burn slowly toward the other end with the meat arranged in the middle.
- Slow N’ Sear or Char. This method is the easiest. You just have to put some unlit charcoal in the basket and light up a few pieces – not all. Then wait a bit for them to activate the other coals, about 15 minutes.
Everyone has their preferred method for setting up their grill. I prefer the Slow N’ Sear method because it is the easiest and takes the least amount of preparation.
Tools Needed to Make Ribs on a Weber Kettle
- Basting brush
- Charcoal lump or briquettes
- Heavy-duty Aluminum foil or butcher paper
- Meat thermometer
- Paper towel
- Round butter knife
- Sharp knife
- Weber grill
How to Prepare Ribs for Smoking
- Start by choosing the best ribs: Pork spare ribs (ideally St. Louis style ribs) or Baby Back ribs from your local butcher are ideal.
- Dab your ribs until they are dry with paper towels.
- Trim the ribs before smoking. Start by removing the back membrane using a round knife.
- Apply a dry rub to add some flavor to your meat. You can create a complex rub or keep it simple with Kosher salt and black pepper.
Prepare the Weber Kettle
To set up the vent of your Weber Kettle, you first have to light the charcoal.
Then put the lid down and open the exhaust and intake vents to allow airflow to pass by. When your kettle is heated through to 200-225°F, you can adjust the vents. First, you must close the intake bottom vent halfway. When the temperature rises to 250°F, you must do the same with the exhaust top vent.
It’s best to add a thermometer to monitor the internal temperature of the Kettle. A great place to put your thermometer is the exhaust damper.
Smoke the Ribs
Smoking ribs is a delicious way to cook them, and there are a few key factors to keep in mind to ensure that they turn out perfectly.
A good temperature range to aim for in a smoker is 225-250 degrees Fahrenheit. This will allow the ribs to cook slowly, which helps to tenderize the meat and infuse it with the flavors of the smoke. The cooking process will take at least 4-6 hours or more, depending on the thickness of the ribs and the smoker’s temperature.
In terms of saucing, spritzing, or basting the ribs, it’s generally best to do this towards the end of the cooking process. Applying sauce too early can cause it to burn, and it’s generally best to let the ribs smoke for a while before adding any additional flavorings.
Turning the ribs is generally unnecessary, as the low and slow cooking process allows the ribs to cook evenly.
Some people like to wrap the ribs in foil or butcher paper (like a brisket) towards the end of the cooking process to help speed up the cooking time and keep the ribs moist. This is an optional step but can be highly effective.
Rest the Ribs
You can let the ribs rest as they are for about 10-15 minutes. It is best to slather them in barbecue sauce while they are still hot.Print
Best Temperature for Weber Kettle Ribs
The best temperature for smoking ribs on a Weber kettle grill is 225°F to 250°F. This temperature range will allow the ribs to cook slowly and gently, resulting in tender, fall-off-the-bone, moist, and flavorful ribs every time.
How Long Does It Take to Smoke Ribs at 225?
The time it takes to smoke ribs at 225°F will depend on the size and thickness of the ribs and the specific type of smoker being used. It can generally take 6 to 8 hours to smoke ribs at 225°F. It is always best to use a meat thermometer to ensure that the ribs reach the ideal internal temperature of 190-205°F.
How Often Should You Check Ribs?
Ideally, you should start smoking the rib rack with the lid closed for the first few hours to ensure they are infused with the smoke.
After the first few hours, you can check on them every half hour and spritz them if you want to.
Best Way to Store and Reheat Smoked Ribs
To store leftover bbq ribs, wrap them tightly in aluminum foil and place them in an airtight container. They will keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
To freeze the ribs, wrap them tightly in aluminum foil or place them in an airtight container and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months.
The best way to reheat ribs is on the smoker. Preheat the grill to 350°F and wrap the ribs in aluminum foil. Place the wrapped ribs on a baking sheet and heat for 15-20 minutes, or until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F.