Smoked Beef Ribs

Using a well seasoned marinade before these smoked beef ribs hit the cooker adds flavor while helping tenderize the meat. Beef ribs can be a little on the tough side if not prepared and cooked properly. The marinade adds one more way to ensure that your smoked ribs are nice and tender.

This recipe makes enough marinade for two seven-bone slabs of beef ribs. It's important to separate the slab into individual ribs before marinating. That'll let the marinade do it's work easier, since it can soak into all sides of each rib.

Be sure to find beef ribs that are nice and meaty. Look closely between each rib bone on the meaty side. Often times the butcher will trim a lot of the meat out from between the ribs. If you can't find any meaty ribs, ask the butcher to get you some slabs that haven't been trimmed this way. If he can't help you out, go somewhere else to buy your beef ribs!

For the marinade you'll need:

  • 16 ounces of orange juice
  • 2 cans of beer
  • 6 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 4 bay leaves, broken up
  • 1 tablespoon cracked black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon of rosemary leaves, crushed
  • 1 small white onion, sliced thinly


Cover the ribs with the marinade, letting the liquid work for at least one day, preferably two days. Since the marinade is acidic from the orange juice, do the marinating in a non-reactive container. Plastic, glass or ceramic, and stainless steel are all fine to use. The easiest and cleanest method is to use a large zip-lock freezer bag. Be sure to place the bag of marinating ribs in a large bowl or baking dish to catch the drips in case it springs a leak.

Cook your smoked beef ribs at 225 degrees Fahrenheit, using oak for smoke. It'll take from three to five hours to bring the beef ribs to tender perfection. For added juiciness, baste the ribs with beer every half hour as they smoke.

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