Barbecued Beef Short Ribs

From Rockin Ronnie Shewchuk

2009 Sep/Oct

Rockin’ Ronnie, barbecuemeister extraordinaire, says: “I love short ribs because they have so much fat and connective tissue. With slow cooking and a little smoke, they transform into rich, succulent, fork-tender morsels of pure carnivore love.” This recipe is adapted from his Asian Dry Rub recipe in his latest book, Barbecue Secrets Deluxe. We’ve used a classic barbecue rub instead of the Asian rub.


  • 1 T. each kosher salt and seasoning salt
  • 1 t. cayenne
  • 2 T. each white sugar, brown sugar, cumin, good chile powder and black pepper
  • 1/4 c. paprika
  • vegetable oil
  • 6 10-oz. pieces of beef short ribs, at least 2 inches thick, preferably on the bone
  • prepared mustard
  • apple juice for the smoker’s water pan and for spraying on the ribs
  • your favourite barbecue sauce


To make the dry rub, whisk together the salts, cayenne, sugars, cumin, chile powder, pepper and paprika in a bowl. Coat the ribs with a thin layer of mustard, then sprinkle with the dry rub. Drizzle the ribs with a little oil on all sides. Set aside.

Prepare your smoker for barbecuing, bringing the temperature to 225°F. Line the water pan with a layer of heavy-duty foil and fill the pan with apple juice. Put the ribs in the smoker. Cover the smoker and cook the ribs for 5 to 6 hours over hickory or apple wood. Spray the ribs with the apple juice a couple of times in the last 2 hour of cooking. Glaze the ribs with sauce in the last half hour. The ribs are done when the meat has pulled away from the bone. (For extra tender ribs, wrap them in foil for an additional hour of cooking.) Remove the ribs from the smoker and let them rest, tented with foil, for about 10 minutes. Serve them with more sauce on the side for dipping and accompanied by your favourite cole slaw. Serves 6.