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How long to cook thick Baby Backs?

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    How long to cook thick Baby Backs?

    I picked up some Sam's Club Baby backs and they are pretty thick (3 racks at almost 10 lbs). I usually cook BBs for 3-4 hours but I'm guessing these will take a lot longer. I have guests coming and would prefer to have them finish at the right time.

    On the ribs recipe - Meathead has 3-5 hours for BBs and a maximum of 4 hours (typo) so I was thinking of starting them at 1:00 with an estimated finish of 5:30 PM - but if they get done at 5--that's OK, too.

    Anybody have direct experience with Sam's thick BBs at 225F ???

    #2
    Wow! Those are huge.

    I would cook them low and would just finish them up and hold them low. If you cook these too hot they can dry out.

    Don’t try and time it. Have them ready early.

    All IMHO of course.

    Comment


      #3
      I think that's a reasonable timeline. I have used those Sam's BBRs several times. I prefer to trim off some of the loin meat if they are really thick.

      Comment


      • Hulagn1971
        Hulagn1971 commented
        Editing a comment
        +1 on the trimming.

      • Dewesq55
        Dewesq55 commented
        Editing a comment
        +2. The loin meat tends to get dry and is not moist and tender the way the rib meat gets.

      #4
      I've cooked plenty of those from Costco. Run your temp at 250-275 and they "should" be done in about 4.5 hours. They tend to be really thick so give yourself some extra time. This is based on cooking them without wrapping during the process. If you are done early no worries, just wrap them tight in HD aluminum foil (double wrap) and toss in a cooler with some warm towels. Can hold for at least 2 hours.

      Comment


        #5
        It's been said here that it's done when it's done many times. If possible, I'd allow six hours, and if they are done early, wrap in foil and hold in your oven at it's minimum temp until serving time. The min temp for our oven is 170° and that works for us. You can add "stuff, (apple juice, butter, sauce, or whatever to help the ribs retain moisture). This works best if you like, or don't mind, pull off the bone ribs.

        Comment


        • dlaslo
          dlaslo commented
          Editing a comment
          OK....I'll get the Yeti out just in case.

          I'm trying "hanging" for the first time. Usually, I cook them horizontal but today I'm trying the hooks with my Oklahoma Joe.

        #6
        dlaslo I almost exclusively cook those thick baby back ribs from Sam's club - they label them loin back, and they seem to have a good thick portion of the loin on them.

        Mine usually take 4.5 to 5 hours to be nice and done at 225. If you are cooking them at 250 to 275, you should get them done a little faster. I have no clue hanging in the Bronco if they will get done faster like on a PBC, I guess you have temp control on the Bronco. Just think about double hooking them or checking to make sure they don't fall in the fire!

        I would personally be tempted to start them at noon, and wrap in foil and into a cooler with towels or warm oven if they get done before 5:30. Its better to have the meat done early than to make dinner guests wait!
        Last edited by jfmorris; February 19, 2020, 11:44 AM.

        Comment


          #7
          I try to get the 3 pack from Sam's at 9 lb or preferably under, because my personal preference is racks that are less than 3 pounds each for bb. So many places like to really give you some thick baby backs that way they can make more money off the otherwise cheap loin meet. And thick backs are hard to cook properly in my experience. The outside loin meat gets dry by the time the inside cooks and softens properly. I had some really thick ones take me 7 or 8 hours before and worst I had was some 4lb+ back racks take me 9 hours.

          Comment


            #8
            Well...I'm guessing 5-6 hours.......I put them in at 12:30 at 225F. Now if I can figure out when they are done with the ribs on a hook (bend test???) I'll be set

            Comment


            • MBMorgan
              MBMorgan commented
              Editing a comment
              Using your instant-read thermometer, just make sure that the ribs are above 190F everywhere you probe them. Below 190, collagen and connective tissue won't render and you'll have some mighty chewy ribs.

            • jfmorris
              jfmorris commented
              Editing a comment
              Unfortunately, the bend test usually does NOT work on these thick loin back ribs. The slabs are just too thick to "crack". Other indicators are when the meat is pulling back from the bones, and a thermometer.

            • HawkerXP
              HawkerXP commented
              Editing a comment
              Toothpick method is what I use...Looking for easy penetration as said above.

            #9
            I have a good thermometer (Thermapen)....but I can't get at most of the ribs without removing them from the smoker. If I move them I'm getting a little more nervous about them falling even though I double hooked them. "Fall off the bone" is not an objective here.

            My plan B is to smoke for three hours and then put them in the oven at 225 for the remainder.

            Don't think I'll hang them anymore. Probably need a bigger smoker to go horizontal.
            Last edited by dlaslo; February 19, 2020, 01:45 PM.

            Comment


            • jfmorris
              jfmorris commented
              Editing a comment
              Hanging is a good way to go, and there will likely NOT be a risk of anything falling into the fire until they are almost done - well more than 3 hours. If you want to keep going on the Bronco and are worried, cut each slab in half so they will fit on the grate. Stand them on edge in a rib rack if you have one, otherwise I've overloaded a smoker before and just piled them up on the grate, and rotated them often. Its like the oven at that point, but you are still getting smoke.

            • dlaslo
              dlaslo commented
              Editing a comment
              Good idea...thanks

            • FishTalesNC
              FishTalesNC commented
              Editing a comment
              Just rehang the 1/2 racks if you cut the slabs, no need to daisy chain the hooks for 1/2 a rack.

            #10
            So how did they turn out, dlaslo ?

            Kathryn

            Comment


              #11
              Originally posted by fzxdoc View Post
              So how did they turn out, dlaslo ?

              Kathryn
              Well, I smoked them in the hanging position for about 4 hours and then I took jfmorris suggestion and transferred to horizontal by cutting and stacking. This way I could tell when done by the bend test (maybe another 40 minutes and they were done)

              I usually cook ribs in a pellet smoker and the appearance was quite different in a charcoal drum smoker. They looked like I already put sauce on them. A little dry and shiny looking. But they turned out great.

              All that worrying for nothing. Not sure if I like hanging. Maybe I'll try one more time.

              Comment


                #12
                Glad they came out great, and 4:40 sounds about right in the ballpark - I assume this was at 225. I am sure your dinner guests enjoyed them!

                The hanging thing is really a way to get capacity in a cooker that is only 18” in diameter. Only other option is a rib rack and cutting them and standing on edge on the grate, or rolling like you find folks doing with the smaller Weber Smokey Mountain cookers.

                Comment


                  #13
                  Interesting....I just watched this video of a throwdown between Sams, Costco, Walmart, etc ribs. Some interesting tid bits

                  Comment


                    #14
                    We have a Sam's Club pretty close to us. Those 3 packs of BB's are what we generally use. Usually they're pretty meaty and cook up well with nice flavor, much like the results of that video. When we're entertaining, we opt for ribs from a shop in the city called Strip District Meats. They have nice St Louis Style cuts already prepackaged. No need to additional trimming other then pulling the silver.

                    Comment


                      #15
                      I like to shoot for 275 F for a cook time and then let them roll, un wrapped. They take about 4-5 hours. The loin meat is the tricky part, but you can always probe it with a good thermo to check it. That is the one advantage of baby back, you do get a more accurate reading because the meat up there is more substantial.

                      Comment

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