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B-day Baby Backs Three Ways

FearlessGrillFearlessGrill Posts: 695
edited 2:55PM in EggHead Forum
My birthday was earlier this week, and I decided to invite some friends over and celebrate over some ribs. I picked up two three-rack packages of baby backs from Costco to cook.

I decided to do some different preparations to mix things up a little bit. I did three racks 'regular BBQ'. I had some of the Dinosaur BBQ's Mutha Sauce already mixed up from another cook, so I used some of their Cajun Foreplay rub over yellow mustard to prep those racks, and sauced them with the Mutha Sauce. I mopped these with a mix of apple juice and cider vinegar as they cooked, and coated with sauce for the last 20 minutes of the cook.

I did the next two racks with a coffee based preparation. I really like the coffee-crusted pork tenderloin recipe from the recipe section of the forum, and I thought that rub would work well on pork ribs too. Before rubbing, I marinated the ribs in a pot worth of strong coffee mixed with garlic, salt, and brown sugar for about 2 hours. I mopped these with the coffee marinade (boiled of course) as they cooked. I didn't use any sauce on these.

Finally, I decided to try an experiment with the last rack. My wife has gotten into canning recently and has been making a bunch of jams. She recently tried a nectarine-amaretto jam that tasted great but didn't really gel all that well. I thought it would make a great glaze for ribs though. I couldn't find any nectarine juice, so I marinated the ribs in peach juice and garlic for a couple of hours, rubbed them with salt, pepper, and garlic powder, and mopped with additional peach juice as they cooked. I glazed with the jam for the last 20 minutes of the cook.

I also used this as an opportunity to try out my new sliding rig system on ribs for the 1st time. I was really happy with the way it worked, though my ribs came out a bit drier than they normally do, which I thought might have something to do with taking the rig out to rotate the shelves. Not sure though. Guess I need to test my theory and make more ribs. :)

So while I thought the ribs were a bit dry, my friends loved them, and gobbled them up. The BBQ ones were good. The coffee ones worked really well too. The nectarine ones were fantastic. I wish I had done another rack of them.

Here are the ribs marinating under the watchful eye of the cat...

Here they are in the Egg on the adjustable rig at the beginning of the cook

And on the adjustable rig when I pulled it out to mop and rotate the grids for the 1st time...

Finished! Time to pull and eat!



  • pissclamspissclams Posts: 49
    ribs look great. how do you use that adjustable rig and offset your heat source?
  • I had the spider under it with a pizza stone and drip pan on it.

  • MickeyMickey Posts: 18,742
    That looks good man.
    Salado TX Egg Family: 3 Large and a very well used Mini, added a Mini Max (I'm good for now). 

  • EggSimonEggSimon Posts: 422
    looks great !

    How often have you rotated the ribs during the entire cook ?
  • I rotated once per hour when I opened up to mop. I moved each rack up one, and move the top to the bottom. I also turned the grids 180 degrees while rotating them on the AR, as the front of my Egg seemed to be cooking faster than the back that day.

  • Outstanding - the variety was quite diverse and innovative

    Thanks for sharing
  • EggSimonEggSimon Posts: 422
    thanks for that answer, and immediate the next question ;)

    I´m always wondering a bit, when I see this set up.
    A normal rib rack provides space for 6 or 7 slaps of babybacks. No rotation, pit opening... is necessary. But I see much more your adjus rig / rotation technique than the rib rack technique. Is there a special benefit with cooking the ribs horizontal ?
  • pattikakepattikake Posts: 1,175
    Happy belated B-day and the ribs are looking good. Great job. Love the cat.

    Wichita, KS
  • Thanks. Cat is cute but hates you though. Nothing personal... she's just evil and hates everyone but my wife. :)

  • I have always used a vertical rack in the past. On this cook I used the AR because:

    1) I just got it and wanted to try it out for this purpose
    2) I was cooking three different kinds of ribs, and was mopping each kind with something different. This was really easy on the AR, but would have been a PITA in a vertical rack
    3) It's easier to sauce the ribs when they're laying flat, especially when using different sauces as I was.

    If I was cooking all one kind and wasn't mopping, I'd probably use my vertical rack till the ribs were done, then just put them on the AR to sauce and finish.

    I'll let others with more experience using the AR for ribs comment on why they do it.

  • That all sounds so good
  • That looks just fabulous. :)
  • BeliBeli Posts: 10,751
    Happy Birthday John,a great way to celebrate...nice when you have different flavours to many of you were looks like lots of nice food there
  • Thanks Beli,

    We had about 10 people, though I wasn't sure how many I'd get when I bought the ribs. I had some nice leftovers too.

  • 2Fategghead2Fategghead Posts: 9,623
    John, Happy belated Bday. :)

    As far as you AR setup on your rib cook goes I did a very similar thing for my six BB slabs. I only had two oval grids so like you I used my spider and 14 inch stone and drip pan. Then my first grid was my 18 inch porcelain grid. Then I placed my AR on the 18 inch grid with the oval grid in it. Then I used my AR extended rig with my other oval grid. Like you I rotated every hour (I had to leave the 18 inch grid there so I had to flop the ribs around) but I didn't mop but I did spritz. I went dry. Everything came off in 5 hours and the ribs were fantastic! :P



  • They look and sound great! In the last few weeks I upgraded my adjustable rig to the sliding rig system in prep for a BBQ competition next weekend and I love it. Interesting note on the dryness and taking time to rotate .... time for more experiments!!!!

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