3-2-1 Ribs! Easy smoked baby backs

20150503_185405Kris and I were have a great weekend. We ran the ‘Run of the Mills 5K’ on Saturday morning (followed by mimosas and bloody marys) . watched our neighbor run his first 1/2 marathon, and did some work outside. So yes it was a great weather weekend. On our way back from watching the 1/2 marathon I thought it would be a good idea to smoke some ribs. We stopped by Whole Foods, grabbed the goodies and headed home. The weather man was calling for afternoon storms but since they are usually wrong, I went ahead with the rib plan.

For some ribs may be intimidating but the 3-2-1 method is almost foolproof. Just 3 steps to smoky goodness:

3 – smoke the ribs
2 – wrap the ribs
1 – sauce the ribs

That’s it. Now onto the details…….20150503_132049Start with some good ribs. If the butcher has not already done so, remove the thin papery membrane from the bone-side of the ribs. 20150503_132200First brush on the mustard sauce then add some dry rub. I usually make my own but today I tried some ‘Island Breeze’. A mix I picked up at Lunds grocery, and it did not disappoint!

Time to fire up the Traeger and just leave it on ‘smoke’. Drop the ribs on the grates and smoke for 3 hours. Smoker temp should hang around 180 – 200 for this stage.20150503_162701After 3 hours remove the ribs and get ready to wrap. Turn your smoker up to 225 degrees for stage 2. Grab 4 large sheets of tin foil.20150503_162815Lay a slab of ribs on 1 sheet of the foil, folding up the side s bit to keep the liquid in. Now just 3 ingredients to add for the wrap – sprinkle with brown sugar, squirt on some honey then add about 1/4 cup of beer.20150503_162925Wrap the slab up tight in 2 sheets of foil and back to the grill for 1 hour. Halfway through this stage is when the weatherman decided to be correct for a change. We had a massive thunderstorm blow through. Wind, hail and heavy rain!! I was praying the Traeger would keep smoking. By some miracle, the storm was gone in less than 30 minutes, the Traeger was still smokin and we were in business!20150503_184544

After an hour remove the ribs from the grill, carefully take them out of the foil. Be careful of escaping steam! Brush with your favorite sauce and back to the grill to ‘set’ the sauce. This will take 30 – 60 minutes and you are done! perfect smoky ribs. I served this with a side of beans, and Kris made an awesome salad. Cheers!


2 racks baby back pork ribs (about 5 pounds total), trimmed
1/3 cup yellow mustard
1/4 cup apple juice
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
BBQ sauce
1/3 cup honey


If your butcher has not already done so, remove the thin papery membrane from the bone-side of the ribs.

In a small bowl, combine the mustard, 1/4 cup of apple juice, and the Worcestershire sauce. Spread thinly on both sides of the ribs; season with your rub..

When ready to cook, start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (4 to 5 minutes). Smoke the ribs, meat-side up, for 3 hours. Transfer the ribs to a rimmed baking sheet but leave the grill on. Set the temperature to 225 degrees F.

Tear off four long sheets of heavy duty aluminum foil. Top with a rack of ribs; pull up the sides to keep the liquid enclosed. Sprinkle half the brown sugar on the rack, then top with half the honey and beer. Lay another piece of foil on top and tightly crimp the edges so there’s no leakage. Repeat with the remaining rack of ribs. Return the foiled ribs to the grill and cook for an additional hour.

Carefully remove the foil from the ribs—watch out for hot steam—and brush the ribs on both sides with BBQ Sauce. Discard the foil. Arrange the ribs directly on the grill grate and continue to grill until the sauce “tightens”, 30 minutes to 1 hour more.


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