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3-2-1 Ribs Rule or Ruin the Day

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    3-2-1 Ribs Rule or Ruin the Day

    3-2-1 Ribs Rule or Ruin the Day? A system that works for backyard heroes but not for the purist.
    Decided to give it a try by defining and planning the cook for 6 hours.

    Good BBQ has 3 components, Time, Temperature, and The Pit Boss.
    1- The Pit Boss, the person in charge, The Judge, Jury, and Prosecutor of the cook.
    2- Time is how long the cook takes to be determined at the end of the cook
    3- Temperature of the pit and internal temp "Doneness" of the ribs
    Pork Ribs: 3 hrs. smoke @180*F, 2 hrs. foil-wrapped @250*F, and finished unwrapped 1 hr. @250*F. And the process is Smoke, Wrap, and Finish? Time, temp, and all else to be determined by the Pit Boss.

    I started with 1 rack of St. Louis style Ribs decided to use the 3-2-1 method, but with a temperature probe for monitoring
    Seasoned lightly with Traeger Coffee rub,
    Timberline 850 up to 180*F, super smoke mode on, Ribs on
    3 hours later time to wrap in foil with butter, brown sugar, and apple juice

    Operator error: About 1.5 hours later I realized I forgot to set the temp up to 250*F,
    Oh Crap--Pit Boss Malfunction
    Kicked the temp up to 275*F. Oh well there goes the 2 hours
    At 2:45 hours of wrap, it is time to unwrap and finish, Internal temp 175*F, Bend test good
    At 190*F internal time to add sauce, light coat
    At 200*F finished. Closer to 7-hour cook.

    The Ribs turned out really good.
    Click image for larger version

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    #2
    LoL! Stay off the PBR when cooking!

    Comment


    • smokenoob
      smokenoob commented
      Editing a comment
      what he said! 😂😂😂

    • holehogg
      holehogg commented
      Editing a comment
      As above.

    #3
    no harm no foul, good save!

    Comment


      #4
      Every time I've tried this method my ribs come out way too soft IMO. Don't get wrong, I like wrapping the ribs to get them a little tender but not for 2 hours. We like St. Louis style and going 275 for 2 hours meat side up, then wrap for 45 mins with some butter and brown sugar meat side down and then unwrapped again for another hour or until they are done to your liking meat side up.
      I think my family and co-workers all enjoyed eating all the trial and errors......Everyone's tastes are so different it makes it fun to experiment and fix the same protein so many different ways!!

      Comment


        #5
        I would add a 4th component, quality of the meat.

        Fun to try new ways. I think 3-2-1 method puts out good ribs. I like mine unwrapped but that is a bit trickier of a cook. You just need to watch for doneness and spritz if they need it.

        If you wrap you can add another layer of flavor, more sweetness with honey, tartness with ACV, or add another flavor of rub.

        My perfect rib has a bit of a crunch/crispy texture to the bark but is juicy and tender inside. Not falling off the bone but cleanly tuggable off the bone.

        Comment


          #6
          The sign of a good Pit Boss is one who can recover from mistakes or other problems. Sounds like you were able to do just that.

          Comment


            #7
            The Wibs turned out ok even with the Oh crap component. It is sorta hard to screw Wibs up. Good work!

            Comment


              #8
              Somehow, I've had better results without wrapping - 250f all the way through for about 6 hours. All wood fuel on a OK Joe Longhorn. Nice bark, fat rendered. Had a 4th of July party last summer, ne person called them "outstanding," and a couple days later another said they were the best he's had!

              And it only took me four years to figure out! :-)

              Comment


              • FireMan
                FireMan commented
                Editing a comment
                its all I do, cook em Dano, only, no wrappin.

              • smokenoob
                smokenoob commented
                Editing a comment
                no wap wibs, yep!

              • FireMan
                FireMan commented
                Editing a comment
                Yes smoken, No Wap Wibs.
                I apowagize.

              #9
              I used to wrap. Stopped about a year ago. Now just 250 on the pellet cooker until done. About 5-6 hours. Fool proof.

              Comment


                #10
                3-2-1, or its variant 3-1-1, has always worked out for me. But you know what else has always worked out, too? 5-0-0. Or sometimes 6-0-0, or somewhere in between, depending on the external factors.

                I think that once something works for you, keep doing it. I would eat good ribs without ever asking how they were cooked. If they’re good, who cares. In fact, we were at a bbq recently, and the ribs were bad. I ate those ribs too. Hey, they were ribs. I took an extra one. Ribs, y’know?

                Comment


                • Jfrosty27
                  Jfrosty27 commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I’m with you. Who cares how they’re cooked. Wibs. They’re like pizza for me. They’re ALL good and I’ll eat them no matter what, when, how….you get it….

                • smokenoob
                  smokenoob commented
                  Editing a comment
                  There is no bad weather, just bad cloths…….there is no bad wibs, just bad buds.. 🤪. i’know!

                #11
                I typically do more of a 3-1-1. But recently, my personal best SLC ribs were cooked at 300° unwrapped for about 3.5 hrs., and I may stick with that from now on. There are a lot of acceptable ways to do it.
                Last edited by Steve R.; December 1, 2021, 01:30 PM.

                Comment


                  #12
                  I need to take better notes on the time it takes on my different cookers. Recently I did SLC ribs on the Weber Smokefire and they took 3 hours @ 275 unwrapped. The following week we had company and did SLC again on the Smokefire, but they were done in 2-1/2 hours @ 275 and the company was 1 hour late. So I wrapped them and put in the oven @ 170. So I thought they were going to not be very good after an 1-1/2 hold. Wrong, 2 of the guys said they were the best ribs they ever had. I didn't think they were the best I'd ever done, but they were very good. I didn't measure the grate temp., but guessing it most have been at least 25 degrees higher that what the control panel said.

                  Comment


                    #13
                    I don't wrap if ribs are cooked hanging. I do wrap if I cook them flat. I will wrap "dry" without any rib goo, especially if the ribs were hung. I have found that a pre-rub coating of oil helps the ribs from getting bark that's tough.

                    Comment


                    • Dadof3Illinois
                      Dadof3Illinois commented
                      Editing a comment
                      I’ve never tried wrapping them dry? I assume that helps keep them from steaming and turning to mush?

                    • CandySueQ
                      CandySueQ commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Actually, they steam in their own juices and don't lose any of the flavors you've built at the start of the cook. You still have to monitor the wapped wibs for doneness!

                    #14
                    CandySueQ , in all due wespect, I will wecweate yew peawagwaph: “I don’t wap if Wibs ah hangin. I
                    do wap if I cook
                    em fwat. I will wap “dwy” without any Wib goo, especiawy if if the Wibs ah hung. I have found that a pwewub coating of oil hewps the Wibs fwom getting bahk that’s tough.” Thewe ya have it! 🙃
                    Last edited by FireMan; December 3, 2021, 09:21 AM.

                    Comment


                    • CandySueQ
                      CandySueQ commented
                      Editing a comment
                      I tink I wunderstand!

                    • FireMan
                      FireMan commented
                      Editing a comment
                      I’m particularly fond of the Wib goo.

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