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Ribs Dry on Pellet smoker

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    Ribs Dry on Pellet smoker

    I'vebeeen trying to smoke baby backs on My Camp Chef pellet smoker
    @ 225 after 3 hours they are already drying out. Tried water pan not much better.
    I have smoked on my Weber 3-2-1 method with great results.
    Open to suggestions.
    Thanks
    Goby

    #2
    That sounds kind of fast for that temperature. It my be under done as the fat hasn't rendered yet.

    Comment


      #3
      Ribs were actully crunchy-- Im going to check temp calibration

      Comment


        #4
        If the ribs were actually crunchy, sounds like the temperature at the grate level may be way off from the set point of the controller...

        Comment


          #5
          More than likely, this is because of the quality of meat you are buying. Adding a water pan will not make the ribs more moist. Water will not travel through the meat to make them more moist, nor will it really prevent them from drying out. It will help keep the bark moist, but it can also inhibit its formation. Fat and moisture in the meat you are buying is the real key, for the most part there is really nothing you can do to help this along. So buying a better rack of ribs, might be a better approach.

          Were they done cooking at 3 hours? Remember, cooking by time is a recipe for disaster. Every piece of meat, especially ribs, are different. Cooking by temp and feel is much more important than time. With the 3-2-1 method you are basically braising the ribs while you are wrapping them, so it is no surprise that you would loose the crunch there.

          Pellet smokers do have a lot more airflow as they are driven by a fan, so you will get more surface evaporation, but I would bet that if you change the meat source you will find that the dryness will improve. I routinely cook mine at 275 F and I do not have issues with them drying out, so I really do not think your cook temp (or time) is the issue. I have even cooked ribs at 350 F in my Pit Barrel Cooker without any issue as well, ribs can take the heat.

          Have you tried dry brining them over night? That will help with moisture retention as well. More on that here.

          Comment


          • jfmorris
            jfmorris commented
            Editing a comment
            I can sure attest to this. I've wasted 5-6 hours before smoking ribs that were not from my usual source (Sam's Club), and had totally different results, due to crappy meat from Kroger that I bought only because they had buy one get one free on their ribs.

          • Spinaker
            Spinaker commented
            Editing a comment
            Quality means a lot. As Meathead mentions, "garbage in, garbage out" jfmorris

          • Razor
            Razor commented
            Editing a comment
            Harry has some good info on buying meats. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lsj0l2uR_Iw

          #6
          Checked grill temp Therma Pen vs Grill controll- +/- 5 degrees
          I will keep track of meat source in future to compare results
          Local market usualy has Indiana Kitchen Pork products and I've had good results.
          Usually dry brine method 1/2 tsp salt per pound -min. 8 hrs
          Will try mop hourly to conteract surface evaporation.
          Thanks for replies
          Goby

          Comment


          • jfmorris
            jfmorris commented
            Editing a comment
            Mops just kill any bark formation and also rinse off your spices. The only "mop" I've done is on hot and fast style ribs like the ones they make at the Rendezvous in Memphis, with a vinegar mop prior to applying their seasoning blend. I just did that a few times as a test. I don't mop ribs when going low and slow.

          • jfmorris
            jfmorris commented
            Editing a comment
            If you like the 3-2-1 results you had on your Weber, maybe you should try that same technique on the pellet cooker.

          • bardsleyque
            bardsleyque commented
            Editing a comment
            you could drag the Weber back out...

          #7
          On my grill, I changed 3-2-1 to 2-2-.25. They came out perfect. I reduced the first phase to avoid drying out. I haven't messed around with phase 2. They were far from mushy, maybe by taking an hour off of phase 1 it helps phase 2. I don't know. The third phase was just long enough to make my sauce stick. I was afraid of burning the sugars.

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          • jlazar
            jlazar commented
            Editing a comment
            I changed also. But on the Chubby go more 2.5 - 1 - .5 for baby backs. This is at 225-235.

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