Who doesn’t love smoky, fall-off-the-bone, juicy, tender, and succulent ribs? But not everybody knows the major role resting the ribs plays in making sure you get nothing short of that. So, how long to let ribs rest?
Resting is, more often than not, overlooked.
If you didn’t know, resting allows the connective tissues and gelatinized collagen to suck back in all the tasty juices.
Moreover, letting the meat rest is a much safer choice unless you wish to burn your mouth. Let it cool down and become even tastier!
Resting the ribs for the right amount of time to reach the right amount of temperature is the key to a moist meal.
Since we now have your attention, let’s dive into our guide on How Long To Let Ribs Rest.
How Long To Let Ribs Rest?
Generally, the resting time varies from one type of rib to the other.
In our experience, ten to fifteen minutes of resting time is ample if you’re smoking pork ribs. On the other hand, the resting time for smoked beef ribs will be anywhere above thirty minutes.
Besides the type of ribs, the resting time also varies depending on the size. Naturally, it’ll take much more time to rest larger ribs than smaller cuts.
As you know, pork ribs are much thinner than beef ribs. Thus, in general, beef ribs require much longer resting time.
But keep in mind that resting the ribs for more than forty-five minutes is a bad idea. Be it pork ribs or beef ribs, the meat will harden if rested for over forty-five minutes.
Thus, make sure you’re keeping track of time and avoid over-resting the ribs.
Use the Faux Cambro technique or rest the rib inside a kitchen oven to prevent it from getting cold.
Check out this video on how you can keep BBQ meat warm easily to learn more.
Resting Ribs Post Smoking
When you’re smoking ribs or any other cut, the cooking temperatures reach as high as the boiling point of water. This particular stage is referred to as the Stall Phase. It’s at this stage when the moisture evaporates from within the meat.
That causes moisture to shift towards the outer layers and ultimately to the surface. That’s the reason why the juices from within the rib collect outside, and the inside turns dry.
Say you slice open the ribs as soon as you take them off the grill. What do you think is going to happen? That’s correct! While you’ll notice that the wrap is flooded with juices, the ribs will be dry inside.
Therefore, to prevent such a situation from happening, you must let your ribs rest.
When you’re resting the ribs, the juices on the outside are absorbed back into the ribs.
Based on the type of rib and its size, we advise you to let it rest for anywhere between ten to forty-five minutes.
Twenty to forty-five minutes of resting time do wonder for larger ribs. In comparison, ten to fifteen minutes is ample for smaller ribs. That’s because smaller ribs are softer and thus require lesser resting time.
As we mentioned, the major determinant factor in deciding how long to let ribs rest is the size. Furthermore, the rib size varies based on the butchered pig or cow size.
How Long to Let Beef Ribs Rest?
Be extremely patient when resting beef ribs. When compared to pork ribs, these are thicker and larger and require a longer resting time. Besides that, the texture of beef ribs is much tougher as well.
That’s why the excess juices take longer to sink back in, and the meat fibers reabsorb it.
Let the beef rib rest for more than thirty minutes to get the most incredible and tender results.
How Long to Let Pork Ribs Rest?
Unlike beef ribs, pork cuts aren’t only smaller in size but shorter too. Due to these differences, the resting time for pork ribs is much shorter.
Being short and smaller in size allows the pork rib fibers to reabsorb moisture much faster.
All in all, you need only rest pork ribs for around 5-10 minutes before slicing them up.
As much as you should avoid a short resting time, if you let the ribs rest for too long, they’ll become cold.
If you’re curious, here are the differences between beef ribs and pork ribs.
Why Should You Let the Ribs Rest?
It’s very important to let your ribs rest. There’s no way around it. Slicing it open before letting the rib rest will give you unsatisfactory results.
Below are some of the reasons why resting the ribs is crucial:
Giving your ribs time out and letting them rest time increases their overall smoke flavor. The seasoning rub will get another chance to make an impact and sink deep into the center along with moisture.
Plus, if you used your favorite barbeque sauce to coat the ribs, resting surely helps.
As the juices get soaked back in, the seasoning rub and barbeque sauce mix, increasing the flavor tenfold.
Tenderizes the ribs
To make sure your barbeque ribs turn out tender and soft, you mustn’t skip resting them.
Two factors make the ribs extremely tender: Retaining the meat juices and Carryover Cooking.
Firstly, ensure that you’re using butcher paper/aluminum foil to wrap the rib while resting it. That will help retain the meat juices and make the ribs juicy and tender. Have you ever had those tender, fall-off-the-bone ribs? That’s what we’re talking about!
Secondly, Carryover Cooking is among the most important and neglected processes when it comes to BBQing meat.
The temperature of the ribs continues to rise even outside the smoker. This induces the juicy meat to break down and tenderize it.
While we’re at it, check out our listing of the 5 Best Offset Smokers.
The meat juices redistribute
Resting allows the excess juices to redistribute around the rib. Once that happens, the flavorful moisture sinks in, and the fibers in the meat reabsorb the juices.
Now, the smoked rib is ready to be sliced and served. It’ll not spill juices all over the place.
The oozing meat juice is the most defining characteristic of tender, pull-apart smoked ribs. The color of this juice also helps you check whether or not your smoked ribs are ready.
So when you poke the rib, and the meat juices come oozing out, that’s how you know the ribs are juicy, tender, and ready to eat.
Should I cover the ribs while letting them rest?
Generally, there’s no need to cover the ribs with anything during the resting process.
But if you choose to cover it with heavy-duty aluminum foil wrap, make sure you’re not wrapping the ribs too tightly. If you do, you’ll soften the bark, and it won’t be as crusty as you’d like it to be.
Do I rest the ribs after seasoning them?
Resting the ribs post-seasoning is yet another crucial step. We recommend you let the seasoned ribs rest for approx—eight to twelve hours.
It’ll become very dry if you rest the ribs longer than that. Plus, don’t cover it with plastic wrap when you’re resting the ribs inside the fridge.
How do I get my ribs to be juicy and moist?
The trick here is to make sure you’re consistently smoking the ribs at a low temperature. In contrast, if the meat temperature is high, the ribs will dry out.
You can also marinate or brine the ribs before BBQing them.
I smoked the ribs, and there was too much meat juice. What do I do?
It’s completely normal. You need only let the ribs rest for some time before serving it.
The residual meat juices will get sucked back in if you let them rest. That will make the rib meat more tender and even juicier. It’s the Stall Phase.
If you continue to slice the ribs without letting them rest, the juices will spill over, and that will be a nightmare to clean.
Don’t get us wrong! We get the temptation to dive right in without letting your ribs rest. At the same time, knowing when and how long to let ribs rest is a vital step.
Resting the ribs will ensure that it turns out spectacular, tender, and super juicy.
We suggest using butcher paper to wrap your ribs. It’ll keep all that tasty juice locked inside the ribs.
If you’re unsure which butcher paper to use, here are the Best Butcher Papers.
In case you get impatient during the resting process, prepare the sides that will go with the ribs.
The most crucial thing here is to TRUST THE PROCESS.
We hope you’ve found our guide helpful. Tell us about your best BBQ experiences by commenting down below.
Check out our listing of the Best Insulated BBQ Gloves.
Last Updated on November 10, 2022 by Judith Fertig