Texas BBQ Beef Ribs

Beef short ribs, or "dino ribs" as they are called, are the new hot item in Texas and one of my favorite things to smoke right now. Beef short ribs are from the short plate before the 10th rib and have more meat than back or finger ribs. The famous Louie Mueller Barbecue in Taylor, Texas popularized beef ribs in response to Aaron Franklin's "Best Brisket on the Planet" designation. Each one can weigh 1 to 2 pounds. They are rich in flavor and a lot of times better than brisket. Yes I said it.

Prep Time:
20 mins
Cook Time:
4 hrs
Total Time:
4 hrs 20 mins
8 servings


  • hardwood pellets as needed

  • 4 pounds beef short ribs

  • ½ cup Montreal-style steak seasoning

  • 2 tablespoons mild chili powder

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

  • 8 fluid ounces apple juice


  1. Pour wood chips into the hopper of a pellet grill according to manufacturer's instructions. Set temperature to 275 degrees F (135 degrees C).

  2. Trim ribs with a sharp knife to remove as much fat and silver skin from the top of the ribs as possible. Leave the membrane on the bottom of each rack as this will help hold them together as they cook.

  3. Place steak seasoning in a coffee grinder or food chopper. Grind to a medium coarseness to reduce the size of the salt crystals. Transfer to a shaker bottle. Add chili powder and garlic powder and shake until evenly combined.

  4. Rub 1/2 of the Worcestershire sauce on the bottom of the ribs as a binder, then sprinkle on a medium to heavy coat of the rub mixture. Flip ribs and repeat on the meaty side. Spritz a light coat of apple juice over top to help it "sweat."

  5. Immediately place ribs on the preheated pellet grill with the thicker side of the ribs towards the main heat source (toward the back, opposite the lid).

  6. Smoke ribs, spritzing them with a light coat of apple juice every 30 minutes to keep moist, until the internal meat temperature reaches 198 to 203 degrees F (92 to 95 degrees C), 4 to 6 hours. If it is taking longer don't be afraid to raise the heat to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C) but just watch the internal temperature a little closer, as the window of being done is smaller due to the higher cooking temperature. The temperature probe should slide into the meat like a brisket or like butter when they are ready.

  7. Remove ribs from the grill and place on a large cutting board. Slice into individual ribs to serve, or remove the meat and place on a tray to serve.

Cook's Notes:

I prefer oak, pecan, or hickory wood pellets.

If you're short on time, you can set your pellet grill at a higher temperature, up to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).

You can use a smoker instead of a pellet grill. Smoking time will depend on the weight of the rack.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

506 Calories
42g Fat
9g Carbs
22g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 506
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 42g 54%
Saturated Fat 18g 89%
Cholesterol 93mg 31%
Sodium 2865mg 125%
Total Carbohydrate 9g 3%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 22g
Vitamin C 3mg 16%
Calcium 81mg 6%
Iron 3mg 18%
Potassium 396mg 8%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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