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Ribs and Pulled Pork Without The Fuss

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In this instructable I'm going to give you my ridiculously easy recipe for making amazing ribs and pulled pork. It's very simple, very cheap and uses only a few simple ingredients which most people should have lying around the house. If you're like me, then when you're cooking for a large group of people you like to do as little prep work as possible so you can actually hang out and enjoy your own party, however, when you do bring food to the table you still want it to be as delicious and amazing as possible, and that's where this recipe steps in. It is going to require you to cook the meat in the oven for a long time but in terms of preparation and effort it really is minimal.

It's true that cooking your ribs and pulled pork in a smoker will yield smokier meat, but for those of us not lucky enough to own one, or whose current situation makes it a logistical impossibility (living in a small city apartment) then this recipe is a great alternative. It is truly delicious and what it lack's in smokiness it more than makes up for in ease of implementation and compatibility with standard kitchen equipment.

(Unfortunately, because my guests were hungry they tore the finished products from my hand and I barely had time to take these blurry cell phone pictures of the almost-finished product let alone a manicured picture with perfect lighting and just the right amount of neatly placed dressing. Next time I make them though I'll get a better set of pictures of the final product and upload them) 
 
 
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gnawlej1 year ago
I'm one of those fanatics who lives by my smoker and grill (hey, this is Arizona, I want to use my oven as little as possible in the summer), BUT I'm not a zealot who believes I am the one true pit master. I agree with dtownmaker — one of the beautiful things about Q is how differently it can be done. And really, the important thing is that you like how it comes out and you get to enjoy it with family and friends. That is truly what Q is about.

One thing to make clear to anyone trying this, be careful using aluminum foil — only use it during the actual cook, and do not use it with a steel pan (stainless steel shouldn't be a problem, but better yet is glass — a recyclable aluminum pan as shown is OK, too). The salt in the rub/meat can corrode the aluminum and ruin your meal (it's called a "lasagna cell").
"lasagne cell" is WHAT?
Essentially a rudimentary food battery.

"A 'lasagna cell' is accidentally produced when salty moist food such as lasagna is stored in a steel baking pan and is covered with aluminum foil. ... In this example, the salty food (lasagna) is the electrolyte, the aluminum foil is the anode, and the steel pan is the cathode." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galvanic_corrosion)

With the ribs, the salty pork effluent is the electrolyte.
puyanera (author)  gnawlej1 year ago
Thanks for the comments gnawlej. As I mentioned to dtownmaker below i've rewritten that paragraph now as I don't think it came across right.

Appreciate the tips on foil and pans. Thanks again.
Oh, I had no issue with the original draft; I was actually agreeing with you. There are too many zealots who are convinced their way is the only way to Q. But if you're fretting over doing it "right," then you are missing the best part — enjoying food you like with people you like.
danzo3211 year ago
Before you rub, pat the meat dry with a clean towel. I yank the tough clearish membrane off the bone side of the ribs with fine-toothed pliers.
You can do this with a plain paper towel as well. it grips the membrane really well.
puyanera (author)  danzo3211 year ago
Thanks for the reminder. I've updated the instructable to mention this.
That looks delicious. I do have a smoker and grill but will try your method in the winter perhaps.
I too am one of those who lives and breathes smokers and grills. I prefer to do my q'ing in the summer with a tall cold beverage, a good book, nice comfy chair and the grill/smoker doing it's thing. In the winter though I don't get many kicks out of trying to keep those things up to temp. I do very much like you have done and I get great results everytime. Two things, I often put my rub on and then some stone ground mustard and seal it all up in a foil pouch leaving one end open. I add some vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke, and what ever other liquid gets in my way...cider being one of the favs. Seal it up and bake them like you have done. Be careful not to tear the pouch. Once they are done I put them over a sauce pan and poke the pouch to release all the liquid. I set it in a BIG bowl of ice to cool the liquid as much and as fast as I can. Once it gets cold the fat will solidify on top and you can pull it off. I then take the remain liquid which is setting to gelatin consistency and add that liquid to your BBQ sauce. All of that collagen ends up in the sauce and has an amazing mouth feel. Kudos on a great instructable!!!
puyanera (author)  wabashbanks1 year ago
Ah great idea about keeping the juices for the sauce. I'll have to give that a go. Thanks for the tips.
Not being critical cause your alternative cooking method looks good, but we always, always, absolutely no excuse, remove the membrane on the bone side of the ribs before adding the rub. Just saying.
puyanera (author)  grillmaster1 year ago
Thanks grillmaster, I'll update the instructable to mention this. There's been a few comments about this now.
danzo3211 year ago
I don't think I am contradicting anyone but the rule for meat is, tough cuts do much better low and slow.. tender $$ cuts do great fast and hot.
dougbyte1 year ago
You're making me hungry. That looks like an awesome way to do ribs. Going to save this one for future use. Thanks for posting.

dougbyte
I liked this instructable and love good BBQ. Thanks for posting and great comments from everyone.  If  you don't have the time to do low and slow and still want awesome ribs, then the Ribalizer is the way to go. $24.95.  Two hours and three easy steps to perfect ribs on your gas grill, first time every time.  Check it out. 
http://youtu.be/Yb6GPDNQ08I  Here's what Derrick Riches, bbq.about.com, had to say about it:  "Conclusion: The Ribalizer actually works. The ribs it produces are tender, yet firm. The meat holds to the bone, but comes way clean when you bite. There is a definite crusted surface and the flavor is not steamed or boiled. Additionally, the Ribalizer is easy to use." 
turbo16001 year ago
to cut ya time down by 2/3rds or more , pressure steam , not just a normal steamer, but maybe it worth a try, you would have to do it longer though......) the ribs or any that type of tough meat for 20 min , then throw it straight on grill or bbq , done in 15 to 20 min and tastes alot better.
chikid681 year ago
Liquid smoke is great but only if it is not artificially flavored I use either Colgins or Wrights since they are both all natural. I have tried a few different artificially flavored ones but they taste metallic
eappell11 year ago
I liked this instructable, but sometimes I don't have that much time, so I got me a Ribalizer.  Does an amazing job, in a lot less time, on a gas grill.  Sweet!
ashnman21 year ago
I would like to say I enjoyed this instructable. Even tho I mastered my own ribs I wanted to see if ur recipe is better then mine. We use very similar recipes. I make my own rub and Bbq Sauce. I also cook at a lower temp for even longer, Just helps em fall right off the bone. The only other difference I do, is once its about to go in oven I add just a little water to each foil wrapped ribs. I was told to try that a while ago. I never do it without now. Just helps make em a little bit juicier.

But Im so hungry now, Im gonna have to stop at grocery store and get some ribs.

Thanks. Awesome instructable
dtownmaker1 year ago
Good write-up and yes, I am one of the BBQ fanatics. That said, I just enjoy seeing people BBQ with whatever equipment they have and putting the effort (which you obviously have) into making good food.

I didn't see any internal meat temp references, so I would add that baby backs are good at about 185F, spares at 190F, and butt/picnic at 192F. You can do butt/picnic well in advance of your party and foil/hold in a warmed ice chest covered with thick towels for 4-6 hours and still keep proper temps.
puyanera (author)  dtownmaker1 year ago
Thanks for the comments. I've actually rewritten that paragraph now as i'm not sure it came across right. I just wanted to present what, I think, is a great alternative ribs/pulled pork recipe for those of use without a smoker.

Thanks also for the tips on the meat temp references.
I have a smoker I built and have been smoking pork and corned beef for about 4 years.

low and slow is the way to go. what I do is smoke the meat for about three hours after that the meat is just cooking, then I wrap it and put it in the oven at 190 while I sleep. I wake up to a delicious smelling house and pork that literally falls off the bones.

I have done it the way you describe also with excellent results, and thats what matters, the results. I have added liquid smoke to my oven pork to give it that smoky flavor.

I use sweet baby ray's raspberry chipotle sauce, and my own rub mix.

I have had requests for parties and even done a couple catering jobs because this turns out so well.

makes me hungry reading your instructable
puyanera (author)  peterman9211 year ago
Ah, you are one of the lucky ones with a smoker.

Thanks for the tip about liquid smoke. I actually have some at home so i'll give it a go with that next time i cook them.
mtnredhed1 year ago
Pork for pulled pork can really be sped up. I buy a boston butt/pork shoulder. Cut it into 2 inch chunks, season with plenty of kosher salt and lots of garlic powder, then brown in a 6qt pressure cooker. I just put a few pieces in at a time. When the browning is done, they all go in with 2 yellow onions chunked up. a cup of apple juice, a cup of BBQ sauce, more fresh garlic, and 3 tbl of liquid smoke. Pressure cooking mutes flavors, so double up what you think is right (except for salt). Lock the lid and run at 15lbs for 60 minutes. You can do the quick release with cold water. When you're done the meat is cooked to shreddable doneness and perfect for sandwiches
Mmm...this looks delicious!! I got hungry :D