Pit Boss Ribs are easy to make smoked ribs. The flavor combination of a savory rub combined with sweet apple juice with smoky flavor results in juicy, tender ribs everyone will love.
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the best pit boss rib recipe
Forget tough, hard-to-eat ribs. These Pit Boss Ribs are tender, juicy, and packed full of flavor. If you have a smoker sitting on your back porch that is dying to get used, I highly recommend these smoked ribs.
By slow smoking them in a dry rub, then allowing them to smoke with apple juice, you end up with incredibly juicy and tender ribs that fall off the bone.
This is the perfect summer recipe for parties, your family, or to use as meal prep for the week. The meat is perfect when paired with your favorite sides or even put on sandwiches.
Pit Boss smoked ribs ingredients
- pork ribs - we like to buy St. Louis style, but baby backs and spare ribs also work well in this recipe. You can use whichever rack of ribs you prefer.
- apple juice - lends sweetness to the ribs. Just pick your favorite apple juice and you're good to go! Do not replace this with apple cider vinegar.
- avocado oil - this is used as the binder for the rub. You can also use any other neutral-flavored binder like olive oil. Some people like to use mustard as a binder, but I don't recommend it for this recipe as it changes the overall flavor.
- dry rub - use your favorite rub, but savory-based is best for this recipe. This is the one we use in this recipe. Be sure to check the section on rubs for others I recommend.
- barbecue sauce (optional) - This step is completely optional. When we baste ours in bbq sauce, we always go with Sweet Baby Rays. You could use a spicy sauce or hot sauce instead.
how to smoke ribs on a pit boss
- Start by trimming the membrane and connective tissues from the ribs and discarding them using a sharp knife. You can use a paper towel to get a good grip on the membrane to pull it. You will also want to trim off any excess fat off the top side of the ribs.
- Pat the ribs dry with a paper towel.
- Coat both sides of the ribs with avocado oil. This will be serving as a binder so be sure it’s fully coated.
- Sprinkle the ribs with a dry rub. Using your hands, liberally coat the ribs completely rubbing them across the surface of the meat being sure to also cover the back of the ribs.
5. Cover the ribs and place them in the refrigerator while the smoker preheats.
6. Preheat the smoker to 200°F.
7. Once the smoker has preheated, place the ribs directly on the grill grates, bone side down (meat side up). Close the lid and smoke for 2 hours.
8. After 2 hours, remove the ribs from the smoker and turn the temperature up to 250°F. I like to use a sheet tray to transfer them to and from the smoker.
9. Place the ribs on aluminum foil and create foil boats. Pour apple juice (1 ½ cups each) into each boat. Close and seal up the boats.
10. Put the ribs back on the smoker for 2 hours.
11. After 2 hours, adjust the smoker to 350°F and remove the ribs.
12. Pour the apple juice and liquid out of the boats and leave them open.
13. *optional* brush the ribs with bbq sauce.
14. Place the ribs back on the smoker for 15 minutes.
15. Remove the ribs from the smoker and allow them to rest for 10 minutes. The bones should slide out easily.
16. You can cut the ribs up individually and leave the bones in or out. Serve them up with your favorite sides!
What wood pellets should I use to smoke ribs?
To smoke ribs on the pit boss, I recommend using Oak or Mesquite pellets. We really love the Pit Boss brand pellets. We get the best results using this type of pellets.
What dry rub should I use?
This recipe works best with a savory dry rub because there is sweetness from both the apple juice and the bbq sauce. The one I used included salt, pepper, garlic, paprika, sugar, granulated onion, and chili powder.
I would avoid using a dry rub that has brown sugar as the main ingredient.
Some good options are:
- Special Shit (this is the one I used)
- Lawry’s Memphis Style BBQ Rub
- The Salt Lick Dry Rub
- BBQ Moments Dry BBQ Rib Rub
- Kinders The BBQ Blend
What is the difference between St. Louis style, spare ribs, and baby back ribs?
St. Louis and spare ribs are actually the same things. St. Louis-style ribs are spare ribs that have been trimmed.
The main difference between spare ribs and baby back ribs is the location of the meat. Baby back ribs have more meat on top, while spare ribs have more meat between the bones.
Baby back ribs also tend to be leaner than spare ribs due to the location they came from.
For this recipe, the ribs will cook for a total of 5 hours and 15 minutes.
The pit boss pellet grill will be set to 200°F, 250°F, and 350°F respectively throughout the cooking process.
It takes about 5 hours and 15 minutes to smoke pork ribs on a pit boss pellet grill.
Smoked ribs should be cooked until the internal temperature reaches 175°F-180°F.
products I used to make smoked ribs
how to serve smoked ribs
You can slice the ribs between each bone and serve them bone-in, or you can slide the bones out (it will be that tender!) and serve just the meat.
Here are some great sides to serve with ribs:
can I use another brand of pellet smoker?
Yes, you can use whatever pellet smoker brand you have. You don't have to use Pit Boss, although this recipe was developed using a Pitboss pellet grill.
how to store leftover ribs
Leftover ribs can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
how to reheat leftover smoked ribs
To reheat leftover smoked ribs, place them on a baking sheet and cover with foil. Heat in a 350°F oven until heated through. Be careful not to overcook them.
other grilled recipes you might like
Pit Boss Ribs
- Pit Boss Smoker
- 2 racks St Louis style pork ribs (about 4.5lbs each)
- 3 cups apple juice
- ¼ cup avocado oil
- 1 cup dry rub
- 1 cup barbecue sauce optional
- Start by trimming the membrane from the ribs and discarding.
- Coat the top of the ribs with avocado oil. This will be serving as a binder so be sure it’s fully coated.
- Sprinkle the ribs with dry rub. Using your hands, liberally coat the ribs completely rubbing it across the surface.
- Cover the ribs and place in the refrigerator while the smoker preheats.
- Preheat the smoker to 200°F.
- Once the smoker has preheated, place the ribs directly on the grate, bone side down. Close the lid and smoke for 2 hours.
- After 2 hours, remove the ribs from the smoker and turn the temperature up to 250°F.
- Place the ribs on foil and create foil boats. Pour apple juice (1 ½ cups each) into each boat. Close and seal up the boats.
- Put the ribs back on the smoker for 2 hours.
- After 2 hours, adjust the smoker to 350°F and remove the ribs.
- Pour the apple juice and liquid out of the boats and leave them open.
- *optional* brush the ribs with bbq sauce.
- Place the ribs back on the smoker for 15 minutes.
- Remove the ribs from the smoker and allow them to rest for 10 minutes. The bones should slide out easily.
- You can cut the ribs up individually and leave the bones in or out. Serve them up with your favorite sides!
Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy. It should only be used for estimation purposes and is not a guarantee of any kind. Nutritional information varies widely between brands and types of ingredients used. It is recommended that you calculate the nutritional information based on your own ingredients and brands used. Sweetly Splendid, LLC makes no guarantees as to the exact nutrition information.
These were so tender and packed full of flavor. I followed the recipe exactly and it came out perfect.
I'd never heard of the term pit boss prior to this recipe, made them and wow they came out so tender, needless to say, these were scoffed down.
Pitt Boss is a brand of a smoker grill.
We just bought a smoker, and this was the first smoker recipe I've tried. These were so delicous, and hassle free. Definitely saving this recipe!
I love the avocado oil idea! It is a great binder for the seasonings.
I passed your recipe on to my husband. He is the grill master at our house. And the ribs turned out delicious! Thank you for the wonderful recipe! We enjoyed it!
These ribs are amazing! Juicy and flavorful - great recipe!
Such a great recipe, and so easy too. We will be making it a lot this summer!
These ribs look mouthwatering and delicious! Cooked to perfection.
These pit boss ribs were fantastic! So easy and delicious and a total hit!
You definitely made me drool now. I can't wait to make this. It's time to fire up that smoker again!!!
These ribs were so easy to make and super delicious! Thanks!
These are just like ones you would get from a restaurant!
we made this over the weekend and everyone at the party loved it and kept asking for more!n
These ribs are fall off the bone tender! So hearty, flavorful and savory.
I won a BBQ cook-off following this recipe to the T...These ribs are delicious and it's not difficult to do..
What a huge compliment!! Thank you so much for the kind words. Congrats on the the bbq cook off!