Step 5: Make the "oven-smoker"

Place the ribs onto the rack in the roasting pan and proceed to wrap the entire package like a present in tin foil.  The idea is to create a closed system that will prevent the smoke/steam mixture from escaping.  The tighter and more sealed your tent, the stronger the smoke flavor. 

I went around the bottom of the pan and looped over the top in a few different directions just to be sure I had a tight seal.  See the photo progression below.

Before starting this whole process, put the chips in the oven at 450 degrees until they turn brown/black and start to smoke (takes about 30 minutes). It makes the ribs WAY smokier, and much closer to real smoker ribs. Also, bake the ribs at 220 for 8 to 12 hours. Make these two changes, and you'll be amazed by what you can create in your oven. They really do come out smoky, and fall-off-the-bone tender, just like real smoker-cooked ribs. People will not believe they came fro my your oven and not a smoker. Be warned though - your smoke alarms will probably go off when you get those chips smoking, so you might want to remove the batteries in them before starting. Also, your house will smell a bit smoky for a couple of days. It's totally worth it though, trust me!
Shiftlock, Do you cover the chips at 450 or leave them uncovered? Also are they in water or just dry?<br><br>Thank you,<br>Snowcat60
<p>As a chef and someone who loves to smoke food... NEVER wet the chips when you do that it prevents the wood burning at the proper temp, as well as adds too much moisture. When you burn wood at the improper temp/ with too much moisture you pose two problems. </p><p>1) acrid &quot;smoke&quot; (yuck! And truly it isn't even a true smoke, its a foggy steam) which is made from acetic acid and formic acid. Acetic acid is the main compound in vinegar, while formic acid occurs naturally in ant venom. (Yum!) Both can make for unpleasant, sour-tasting food. Also it prevents the best smoky flavors which come from phenolics.</p><p>2) Too much moisture can result in a lack of bark (the drying of meat with a dry rub and key #1 sign of good smoked meat) as well as a &quot;watered down&quot; flavor. That being said you also don't want a bone dry surface cause it wont have that &quot;sticky&quot; surface for the smoke to hold on to. Typically as your food that you are smoking warms in the smoked there is just enough humidity to allow that stickiness to form allowing the smoke to adhere to it and start the bark process. It's not uncommon to have to mop the meat with a wet sauce every now and again.</p><p>Your best bet is to apply dried wood and start the smolder with either an oven or a torch. If it blazes take your food away and spritz it with some water then go at it again.</p><p>I hope this helps anyone looking to smoke either outside or indoors.</p>
Hey, Snowcat60. I just happened upon this site while searching for a way to smoke in the oven-I've only smoked using a smoker or grill. I have never tried to smoke with dry wood, but I would think that Shiftlock soaked the wood for 15-20 minutes before putting them in the oven. They were also most likely uncovered, but of course I have no way of knowing for sure. I have read some recommendations to make a tent of foil with a hole in the middle so that is the first one that I will try (easier to contain if there is a problem). I'm going to start with only 1/2 cup of chips to see how much smoke is released first, and if everything goes right, I'll move on to the method used by noahw and incorporate Shiftlock's tips. I live in an apartment and I want to make sure that there won't be too much smoke, and definitely no fire. Hope this helped a little. BE SAFE and happy smoking!!
I've changed my mind. I just saw the step-by-steps and the tent that noahw made has<strong> no </strong>hole, so there should not be too much smoke escaping. Therefore, I've decided to go all in. And thinking about it some more, Shiftlock probably did cover the wood, but again, I don't know. I'm going to cover them and wait for the smell, and then I'll know that they're smoking <strong>good</strong>. Be sure to post your results because I want to know how it works out for you. I'll post mine, too. Here's to hoping&nbsp;that it turns out perfect...
I will let you know how it goes. I will be smoking some baby back ribs this Saturday. <br>I agree with on covering them. I am going to use dry chips and see what happens. Wish me luck I don't end up burning down the house. LoL.
Tip for removing the membrane from the back of the ribs - work up an edge with the point of a knife, then use a paper towel to grab the membrane and pull it up. The towel makes it much easier to grip!
Any idea how well this would work with one/a couple of those disposable tin roasting pans they have a a lot of grocery stores? Or do I simply need to experiment with it?
I've read several postings about making a tent using tin foil, so I would assume that a tin pan should suffice-shouldn't hurt to try. Just be sure to keep the oven light on so that you can see what's happening and be able to react quickly if anything goes wrong. Good luck!
that's called papillot (at least, how it sounds) and is a french technique to cook with steam, you can use soup, the self steam of the meat, or, your wood chips!<br><br>great 'ible i'll check it out
Nice instructable man !!!<br> <br> This would probably be good with chicken also ?<br> <br> Gives me lots of ideas !!!<br>
It's nice!
I'll definetly try that mate, just one question, what is a broiler?<br /> <br /> Nice one :)<br />
Most ovens have both bake and broil settings. With Bake, the heat comes from the bottom. With broil, heat comes from the top. With bake, the heat rises and is transferred through the pan to the meat. With broil, the heat is radiated directly down on the meat.
Thanks for the Instructable! Its exactly what I was looking for. I do not have a BBQ or a Smoker right now so this is perfect. I have a bunch of beef ribs thawing and will put the rub on tomorrow to be cooked for a party Saturday. I will let you know how it goes. I cannot wait! <br />
Liquid smoke works pretty well too.<br />
I never tried wood chips (my wife would kill me if I tried)&nbsp; I have always just used smoked paprika. No fuss no muss. Definitely not as good as an outdoor barbeque smoker but they taste pretty good when you are hankering for some smoke.<br /> <br /> I get my smoked paprika at an Italian food center for $3 per bottle and lasts all winter.<br />
it does look tasty I'll think I'll try it !!!<br />
Your ribs look very tasty!&nbsp; When you get right down to it, an oven is really just another type of heat source so once you've added chips for smoke,&nbsp; whats the difference? It's difficult to quantify but there IS a difference and you allude to it in your &quot;ible&quot; . I guess that filling the house with&nbsp;smoke is a bad thing so the foil &quot;tenting&quot; is needed but it also keeps in a&nbsp;lot of moisture, giving the ribs almost a steam cooking. Thats not necessarily a bad thing, just different from what you&nbsp;get in an outdoor &nbsp;bbq/smoker<br /> <br /> &nbsp;
you got a good point ! but if one dose not have a smoker at least this will come close to the real thing . perhaps one can do this with other meets as well and get as good results. A slab of stake ,,,, or some thing with more meat then ribs. &nbsp; &nbsp; <br />
WOW&nbsp;! Them looking soooooooo good !!!!! I can smell them&nbsp; through the pics &nbsp; lol Makes my PBJ taste better looking at them , thanks <br />
This is the best, most useful, most incredible instructable I have ever laid eyes upon D: &lt;3<br />
looks beautiful, man. i'm hungry from just reading through and i just ate.<br />
looks tasty!

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Bio: I've worked for Instructables off and on since 2006 building and documenting just about everything I enjoy doing. I am now the Creative Programs ... More »
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