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The 4 Things You Need to Know About Smoking Ribs

The 4 Things You Need to Know About Smoking Ribs

John Rivers founder and owner of 4 Rivers Smokehouse tells us what we need to know about making his St. Louis-style ribs

John Rivers tells us the four most important things to remember when making his St. Louis-style ribs.

Cooking your own barbecue (real barbecue) can be intimidating for first-timers, but the reward of slow-smoked, tender ribs at the end of the day is well worth it, which is why we asked John Rivers, owner–founder of 4 Rivers Smokehouse, with locations throughout Florida, for a few tips to making perfect, tender ribs.

Rivers’ St. Louis-Style Ribs are tender, sweet, and delicious. St. Louis spareribs tend to be fattier with more meat on the bone than loin-back or baby back ribs. Baby back ribs are cut from the top of the rib cage and abut the loin, while St. Louis cut, which is the most popular cut in Kansas City, are cut from the middle-bottom of the ribcage. You can use St. Louis and loin back ribs roughly interchangeably; however, spareribs might need a little more time as they are typically larger.

For ribs as tender and delicious as you can pick up at 4 Rivers Smokehouse, check out John Rivers rib cooking tips below:

  • Always smoke with the meat side up.
  • Smoke until the meat pulls back from the bone on the tips (about 1/2 an inch from the bone). Use this as an indicator that the ribs are done.
  • Don't put sauce on until the very end (the last 30 minutes of smoking) or, better yet, sauce the ribs just before flashing them on the grill after smoking so the sugar caramelizes and you get a nice crunch atop the succulent meat.
  • Spray ribs with apple juice in the latter period of smoking. Apple and pork go great together.

Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs

These Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs are easy grilled ribs, perfect for the first time griller, but delicious enough for the seasoned pro.

This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Char-Broil however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Can you smell that?‘ A line my grandfather used to say about 45 minutes into the 2-hour drive to the beach. It was more of a statement than a question, his little game with us, his 4 grandchildren loaded in a row in the back seat doing out best to contain our excitement for our families annual trip down to the ocean. He would get us all amped up and excited, and we’d still have so long to go. And then, at some point, something in the air would change, you’d pass the same familiar landmarks and take a deep breath, filling your lungs.

And that’s when we’d really get excited.

That line has become an expression of mine. As the sun lingers longer into the horizon and the morning air fills with songbirds earlier each day, I can’t help but think, “Can you smell it?”

It’s the waning of winter, cold days, and gray skies. The scent of heavy pollen, fresh cut grass, and the smell of the world blooming with every moment of additional sunlight. It’s the smell of charcoal, propane, fire, and most of all meat.

For myself, GirlCarnivore, it’s the unofficial start of grilling season. It’s when people start throwing the covers off of their rusted out classics and start eyeing up the stainless steel lined aisles like they are shopping for the latest model, and they want all the old fashioned American muscle they can get.

As we inch closer to Memorial Day, getting outside, catching up with family and friends around the grill is going to be on the top of everyone’s mind. And guess what, I can smell it coming. Baby, you’d better believe I’m getting excited.

The GirlCarnivore meat lab pretty much exists to fire up the grill – so when I got my hands on the Char-Broil’s Commercial Series TRU-Infrared 4-Burner Gas Grill I was stoked to break it in with friends. See, I’m lucky enough to be a hard working, grill-loving Char-Broil AllStar – I create recipes and play with their products as they come out. It’s an awesome way for me to explore what’s great on the market for you guys – and their TRU-Infrared is one of the best things out there. It makes grilling easy, and no one seems to know about it! What’s up with that?


Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs

These Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs are easy grilled ribs, perfect for the first time griller, but delicious enough for the seasoned pro.

This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Char-Broil however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Can you smell that?‘ A line my grandfather used to say about 45 minutes into the 2-hour drive to the beach. It was more of a statement than a question, his little game with us, his 4 grandchildren loaded in a row in the back seat doing out best to contain our excitement for our families annual trip down to the ocean. He would get us all amped up and excited, and we’d still have so long to go. And then, at some point, something in the air would change, you’d pass the same familiar landmarks and take a deep breath, filling your lungs.

And that’s when we’d really get excited.

That line has become an expression of mine. As the sun lingers longer into the horizon and the morning air fills with songbirds earlier each day, I can’t help but think, “Can you smell it?”

It’s the waning of winter, cold days, and gray skies. The scent of heavy pollen, fresh cut grass, and the smell of the world blooming with every moment of additional sunlight. It’s the smell of charcoal, propane, fire, and most of all meat.

For myself, GirlCarnivore, it’s the unofficial start of grilling season. It’s when people start throwing the covers off of their rusted out classics and start eyeing up the stainless steel lined aisles like they are shopping for the latest model, and they want all the old fashioned American muscle they can get.

As we inch closer to Memorial Day, getting outside, catching up with family and friends around the grill is going to be on the top of everyone’s mind. And guess what, I can smell it coming. Baby, you’d better believe I’m getting excited.

The GirlCarnivore meat lab pretty much exists to fire up the grill – so when I got my hands on the Char-Broil’s Commercial Series TRU-Infrared 4-Burner Gas Grill I was stoked to break it in with friends. See, I’m lucky enough to be a hard working, grill-loving Char-Broil AllStar – I create recipes and play with their products as they come out. It’s an awesome way for me to explore what’s great on the market for you guys – and their TRU-Infrared is one of the best things out there. It makes grilling easy, and no one seems to know about it! What’s up with that?


Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs

These Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs are easy grilled ribs, perfect for the first time griller, but delicious enough for the seasoned pro.

This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Char-Broil however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Can you smell that?‘ A line my grandfather used to say about 45 minutes into the 2-hour drive to the beach. It was more of a statement than a question, his little game with us, his 4 grandchildren loaded in a row in the back seat doing out best to contain our excitement for our families annual trip down to the ocean. He would get us all amped up and excited, and we’d still have so long to go. And then, at some point, something in the air would change, you’d pass the same familiar landmarks and take a deep breath, filling your lungs.

And that’s when we’d really get excited.

That line has become an expression of mine. As the sun lingers longer into the horizon and the morning air fills with songbirds earlier each day, I can’t help but think, “Can you smell it?”

It’s the waning of winter, cold days, and gray skies. The scent of heavy pollen, fresh cut grass, and the smell of the world blooming with every moment of additional sunlight. It’s the smell of charcoal, propane, fire, and most of all meat.

For myself, GirlCarnivore, it’s the unofficial start of grilling season. It’s when people start throwing the covers off of their rusted out classics and start eyeing up the stainless steel lined aisles like they are shopping for the latest model, and they want all the old fashioned American muscle they can get.

As we inch closer to Memorial Day, getting outside, catching up with family and friends around the grill is going to be on the top of everyone’s mind. And guess what, I can smell it coming. Baby, you’d better believe I’m getting excited.

The GirlCarnivore meat lab pretty much exists to fire up the grill – so when I got my hands on the Char-Broil’s Commercial Series TRU-Infrared 4-Burner Gas Grill I was stoked to break it in with friends. See, I’m lucky enough to be a hard working, grill-loving Char-Broil AllStar – I create recipes and play with their products as they come out. It’s an awesome way for me to explore what’s great on the market for you guys – and their TRU-Infrared is one of the best things out there. It makes grilling easy, and no one seems to know about it! What’s up with that?


Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs

These Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs are easy grilled ribs, perfect for the first time griller, but delicious enough for the seasoned pro.

This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Char-Broil however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Can you smell that?‘ A line my grandfather used to say about 45 minutes into the 2-hour drive to the beach. It was more of a statement than a question, his little game with us, his 4 grandchildren loaded in a row in the back seat doing out best to contain our excitement for our families annual trip down to the ocean. He would get us all amped up and excited, and we’d still have so long to go. And then, at some point, something in the air would change, you’d pass the same familiar landmarks and take a deep breath, filling your lungs.

And that’s when we’d really get excited.

That line has become an expression of mine. As the sun lingers longer into the horizon and the morning air fills with songbirds earlier each day, I can’t help but think, “Can you smell it?”

It’s the waning of winter, cold days, and gray skies. The scent of heavy pollen, fresh cut grass, and the smell of the world blooming with every moment of additional sunlight. It’s the smell of charcoal, propane, fire, and most of all meat.

For myself, GirlCarnivore, it’s the unofficial start of grilling season. It’s when people start throwing the covers off of their rusted out classics and start eyeing up the stainless steel lined aisles like they are shopping for the latest model, and they want all the old fashioned American muscle they can get.

As we inch closer to Memorial Day, getting outside, catching up with family and friends around the grill is going to be on the top of everyone’s mind. And guess what, I can smell it coming. Baby, you’d better believe I’m getting excited.

The GirlCarnivore meat lab pretty much exists to fire up the grill – so when I got my hands on the Char-Broil’s Commercial Series TRU-Infrared 4-Burner Gas Grill I was stoked to break it in with friends. See, I’m lucky enough to be a hard working, grill-loving Char-Broil AllStar – I create recipes and play with their products as they come out. It’s an awesome way for me to explore what’s great on the market for you guys – and their TRU-Infrared is one of the best things out there. It makes grilling easy, and no one seems to know about it! What’s up with that?


Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs

These Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs are easy grilled ribs, perfect for the first time griller, but delicious enough for the seasoned pro.

This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Char-Broil however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Can you smell that?‘ A line my grandfather used to say about 45 minutes into the 2-hour drive to the beach. It was more of a statement than a question, his little game with us, his 4 grandchildren loaded in a row in the back seat doing out best to contain our excitement for our families annual trip down to the ocean. He would get us all amped up and excited, and we’d still have so long to go. And then, at some point, something in the air would change, you’d pass the same familiar landmarks and take a deep breath, filling your lungs.

And that’s when we’d really get excited.

That line has become an expression of mine. As the sun lingers longer into the horizon and the morning air fills with songbirds earlier each day, I can’t help but think, “Can you smell it?”

It’s the waning of winter, cold days, and gray skies. The scent of heavy pollen, fresh cut grass, and the smell of the world blooming with every moment of additional sunlight. It’s the smell of charcoal, propane, fire, and most of all meat.

For myself, GirlCarnivore, it’s the unofficial start of grilling season. It’s when people start throwing the covers off of their rusted out classics and start eyeing up the stainless steel lined aisles like they are shopping for the latest model, and they want all the old fashioned American muscle they can get.

As we inch closer to Memorial Day, getting outside, catching up with family and friends around the grill is going to be on the top of everyone’s mind. And guess what, I can smell it coming. Baby, you’d better believe I’m getting excited.

The GirlCarnivore meat lab pretty much exists to fire up the grill – so when I got my hands on the Char-Broil’s Commercial Series TRU-Infrared 4-Burner Gas Grill I was stoked to break it in with friends. See, I’m lucky enough to be a hard working, grill-loving Char-Broil AllStar – I create recipes and play with their products as they come out. It’s an awesome way for me to explore what’s great on the market for you guys – and their TRU-Infrared is one of the best things out there. It makes grilling easy, and no one seems to know about it! What’s up with that?


Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs

These Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs are easy grilled ribs, perfect for the first time griller, but delicious enough for the seasoned pro.

This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Char-Broil however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Can you smell that?‘ A line my grandfather used to say about 45 minutes into the 2-hour drive to the beach. It was more of a statement than a question, his little game with us, his 4 grandchildren loaded in a row in the back seat doing out best to contain our excitement for our families annual trip down to the ocean. He would get us all amped up and excited, and we’d still have so long to go. And then, at some point, something in the air would change, you’d pass the same familiar landmarks and take a deep breath, filling your lungs.

And that’s when we’d really get excited.

That line has become an expression of mine. As the sun lingers longer into the horizon and the morning air fills with songbirds earlier each day, I can’t help but think, “Can you smell it?”

It’s the waning of winter, cold days, and gray skies. The scent of heavy pollen, fresh cut grass, and the smell of the world blooming with every moment of additional sunlight. It’s the smell of charcoal, propane, fire, and most of all meat.

For myself, GirlCarnivore, it’s the unofficial start of grilling season. It’s when people start throwing the covers off of their rusted out classics and start eyeing up the stainless steel lined aisles like they are shopping for the latest model, and they want all the old fashioned American muscle they can get.

As we inch closer to Memorial Day, getting outside, catching up with family and friends around the grill is going to be on the top of everyone’s mind. And guess what, I can smell it coming. Baby, you’d better believe I’m getting excited.

The GirlCarnivore meat lab pretty much exists to fire up the grill – so when I got my hands on the Char-Broil’s Commercial Series TRU-Infrared 4-Burner Gas Grill I was stoked to break it in with friends. See, I’m lucky enough to be a hard working, grill-loving Char-Broil AllStar – I create recipes and play with their products as they come out. It’s an awesome way for me to explore what’s great on the market for you guys – and their TRU-Infrared is one of the best things out there. It makes grilling easy, and no one seems to know about it! What’s up with that?


Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs

These Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs are easy grilled ribs, perfect for the first time griller, but delicious enough for the seasoned pro.

This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Char-Broil however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Can you smell that?‘ A line my grandfather used to say about 45 minutes into the 2-hour drive to the beach. It was more of a statement than a question, his little game with us, his 4 grandchildren loaded in a row in the back seat doing out best to contain our excitement for our families annual trip down to the ocean. He would get us all amped up and excited, and we’d still have so long to go. And then, at some point, something in the air would change, you’d pass the same familiar landmarks and take a deep breath, filling your lungs.

And that’s when we’d really get excited.

That line has become an expression of mine. As the sun lingers longer into the horizon and the morning air fills with songbirds earlier each day, I can’t help but think, “Can you smell it?”

It’s the waning of winter, cold days, and gray skies. The scent of heavy pollen, fresh cut grass, and the smell of the world blooming with every moment of additional sunlight. It’s the smell of charcoal, propane, fire, and most of all meat.

For myself, GirlCarnivore, it’s the unofficial start of grilling season. It’s when people start throwing the covers off of their rusted out classics and start eyeing up the stainless steel lined aisles like they are shopping for the latest model, and they want all the old fashioned American muscle they can get.

As we inch closer to Memorial Day, getting outside, catching up with family and friends around the grill is going to be on the top of everyone’s mind. And guess what, I can smell it coming. Baby, you’d better believe I’m getting excited.

The GirlCarnivore meat lab pretty much exists to fire up the grill – so when I got my hands on the Char-Broil’s Commercial Series TRU-Infrared 4-Burner Gas Grill I was stoked to break it in with friends. See, I’m lucky enough to be a hard working, grill-loving Char-Broil AllStar – I create recipes and play with their products as they come out. It’s an awesome way for me to explore what’s great on the market for you guys – and their TRU-Infrared is one of the best things out there. It makes grilling easy, and no one seems to know about it! What’s up with that?


Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs

These Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs are easy grilled ribs, perfect for the first time griller, but delicious enough for the seasoned pro.

This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Char-Broil however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Can you smell that?‘ A line my grandfather used to say about 45 minutes into the 2-hour drive to the beach. It was more of a statement than a question, his little game with us, his 4 grandchildren loaded in a row in the back seat doing out best to contain our excitement for our families annual trip down to the ocean. He would get us all amped up and excited, and we’d still have so long to go. And then, at some point, something in the air would change, you’d pass the same familiar landmarks and take a deep breath, filling your lungs.

And that’s when we’d really get excited.

That line has become an expression of mine. As the sun lingers longer into the horizon and the morning air fills with songbirds earlier each day, I can’t help but think, “Can you smell it?”

It’s the waning of winter, cold days, and gray skies. The scent of heavy pollen, fresh cut grass, and the smell of the world blooming with every moment of additional sunlight. It’s the smell of charcoal, propane, fire, and most of all meat.

For myself, GirlCarnivore, it’s the unofficial start of grilling season. It’s when people start throwing the covers off of their rusted out classics and start eyeing up the stainless steel lined aisles like they are shopping for the latest model, and they want all the old fashioned American muscle they can get.

As we inch closer to Memorial Day, getting outside, catching up with family and friends around the grill is going to be on the top of everyone’s mind. And guess what, I can smell it coming. Baby, you’d better believe I’m getting excited.

The GirlCarnivore meat lab pretty much exists to fire up the grill – so when I got my hands on the Char-Broil’s Commercial Series TRU-Infrared 4-Burner Gas Grill I was stoked to break it in with friends. See, I’m lucky enough to be a hard working, grill-loving Char-Broil AllStar – I create recipes and play with their products as they come out. It’s an awesome way for me to explore what’s great on the market for you guys – and their TRU-Infrared is one of the best things out there. It makes grilling easy, and no one seems to know about it! What’s up with that?


Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs

These Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs are easy grilled ribs, perfect for the first time griller, but delicious enough for the seasoned pro.

This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Char-Broil however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Can you smell that?‘ A line my grandfather used to say about 45 minutes into the 2-hour drive to the beach. It was more of a statement than a question, his little game with us, his 4 grandchildren loaded in a row in the back seat doing out best to contain our excitement for our families annual trip down to the ocean. He would get us all amped up and excited, and we’d still have so long to go. And then, at some point, something in the air would change, you’d pass the same familiar landmarks and take a deep breath, filling your lungs.

And that’s when we’d really get excited.

That line has become an expression of mine. As the sun lingers longer into the horizon and the morning air fills with songbirds earlier each day, I can’t help but think, “Can you smell it?”

It’s the waning of winter, cold days, and gray skies. The scent of heavy pollen, fresh cut grass, and the smell of the world blooming with every moment of additional sunlight. It’s the smell of charcoal, propane, fire, and most of all meat.

For myself, GirlCarnivore, it’s the unofficial start of grilling season. It’s when people start throwing the covers off of their rusted out classics and start eyeing up the stainless steel lined aisles like they are shopping for the latest model, and they want all the old fashioned American muscle they can get.

As we inch closer to Memorial Day, getting outside, catching up with family and friends around the grill is going to be on the top of everyone’s mind. And guess what, I can smell it coming. Baby, you’d better believe I’m getting excited.

The GirlCarnivore meat lab pretty much exists to fire up the grill – so when I got my hands on the Char-Broil’s Commercial Series TRU-Infrared 4-Burner Gas Grill I was stoked to break it in with friends. See, I’m lucky enough to be a hard working, grill-loving Char-Broil AllStar – I create recipes and play with their products as they come out. It’s an awesome way for me to explore what’s great on the market for you guys – and their TRU-Infrared is one of the best things out there. It makes grilling easy, and no one seems to know about it! What’s up with that?


Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs

These Beginner Dry Rub Smoked Pork Ribs are easy grilled ribs, perfect for the first time griller, but delicious enough for the seasoned pro.

This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Char-Broil however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Can you smell that?‘ A line my grandfather used to say about 45 minutes into the 2-hour drive to the beach. It was more of a statement than a question, his little game with us, his 4 grandchildren loaded in a row in the back seat doing out best to contain our excitement for our families annual trip down to the ocean. He would get us all amped up and excited, and we’d still have so long to go. And then, at some point, something in the air would change, you’d pass the same familiar landmarks and take a deep breath, filling your lungs.

And that’s when we’d really get excited.

That line has become an expression of mine. As the sun lingers longer into the horizon and the morning air fills with songbirds earlier each day, I can’t help but think, “Can you smell it?”

It’s the waning of winter, cold days, and gray skies. The scent of heavy pollen, fresh cut grass, and the smell of the world blooming with every moment of additional sunlight. It’s the smell of charcoal, propane, fire, and most of all meat.

For myself, GirlCarnivore, it’s the unofficial start of grilling season. It’s when people start throwing the covers off of their rusted out classics and start eyeing up the stainless steel lined aisles like they are shopping for the latest model, and they want all the old fashioned American muscle they can get.

As we inch closer to Memorial Day, getting outside, catching up with family and friends around the grill is going to be on the top of everyone’s mind. And guess what, I can smell it coming. Baby, you’d better believe I’m getting excited.

The GirlCarnivore meat lab pretty much exists to fire up the grill – so when I got my hands on the Char-Broil’s Commercial Series TRU-Infrared 4-Burner Gas Grill I was stoked to break it in with friends. See, I’m lucky enough to be a hard working, grill-loving Char-Broil AllStar – I create recipes and play with their products as they come out. It’s an awesome way for me to explore what’s great on the market for you guys – and their TRU-Infrared is one of the best things out there. It makes grilling easy, and no one seems to know about it! What’s up with that?


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