Prepare – To prepare baby back ribs, we find it best to remove the membrane from the back of the ribs. Once you loosen it, you may have to peel it off by grabbing it with a dry paper towel or even pliers. Once it starts coming off, it’s pretty easy. Then liberally sprinkle both sides of the ribs with the rub of your choice. For large cuts of meat like a shoulder, you can make cuts in the thick part of the meat and apply the rub into the slice. Injectable marinades can also be used for larger cuts of meat. Once you have rubbed the meat and/or injected it, wrap it in plastic wrap and let it stand in the refrigerator overnight if possible. Allow the meat to come to room temperature before placing it in your cooker.
Smoking – Ribs will not take as long as a large shoulder. If you plan to cook both in the same day, you will want to start the shoulder before the ribs. Almost any type of hardwood chips are good for smoking pork. Hickory, Mesquite or Apple may rank among the best. Misting or mopping the meat as it cooks can help keep it moist. Just don’t open the smoker any more often that need be, you loose heat. 200-225 is a good temperature to cook pork. Use your instant read thermometer for proper doneness. Remember, large cuts of meat will continue to cook 3-5 degrees once you remove it from the cooker. Allow for this and do not over cook the meat. Some people like to wrap their ribs in foil during that last hour or two of cooking. This is simply preference, and you can experiment with it both ways. You will have a better crust if you do not wrap them in foil.
Grilling – Since “slow and low” is a great way to cook, you can use indirect heat on your gas or charcoal grill. Simply put the heat on one side of the grill and place your meat on the other and close the lid. If grilling over direct heat, turn the meat as needed.