How Do I Cook Pork Spare Ribs?

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  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 16 September 2019
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To cook pork spare ribs, you'll have to choose a cooking method and decide how you will prepare the ribs for cooking. You might add just salt and pepper or prepare a dry rub or marinade instead. If you want to shorten the time that your ribs spend on the grill or in the oven, you can parboil them before you add seasonings. The cooking times for these ribs depend on the method you choose and the temperature that you use to cook them. It is critical, however, to make sure that the meat reaches 145° Fahrenheit (62.77° Celsius) before the ribs are eaten.

You can use a variety of methods to cook pork spare ribs. Among them are grilling, broiling, slow cooking and baking. The cooking method that you choose might depend on your personal preferences as well as the amount of time that you have to commit. Broiling can be one of the faster ways to cook pork spare ribs and might be best if you have to prepare a meal quickly. Slow cooking allows you to take care of other activities while the ribs cook slowly and on a low temperature for a long period of time.


Before cooking pork spare ribs, you can prepare them in any of numerous ways, such as seasoning them with salt and pepper or applying a dry rub. Alternatively, you could marinate the ribs in the liquid or sauce of your choice for a couple of hours before you get started. Some people even marinate their ribs for as long as 24 hours in the hopes of infusing the meat with flavor and possibly even tenderizing it. You also might consider parboiling the ribs before you season them, which means boiling them until they are partially cooked. This can cut down on the time that they have to cook in your oven or atop your grill, and some people assert that parboiling makes the meat more tender.

Grilling and broiling are two of the most common ways to cook pork spare ribs. To grill the ribs, you can heat half the grill and then place the ribs on the unheated side, closing the lid. Then, you can cook your ribs over indirect heat, which is said to make the meat tender without much risk of overcooking or burning. If you choose to broil them instead, you can position your broiler tray 2-3 inches (5.1-7.6 cm) from the source of the heat, place the ribs on the tray, and broil them until they are fully cooked, turning them once during this process.

Oven baking or slow cooking pork spare ribs usually requires more time to complete. You can bake the spare ribs at about 350° Fahrenheit (176.7° Celsius) on a baking sheet that has been lined with foil. If you choose to cook pork spare ribs in a slow cooker, you’ll need to allow four to six hours for them to cook on high or about eight to 10 hours on low. Cutting the rib rack into individual riblets might be optimal for this cooking method, and you usually will need to add a sauce of some kind to the slow cooker along with the ribs.

Pork spare ribs are considered safe for consumption when they reach 145° Fahrenheit (62.8° Celsius). You might do well to use a meat thermometer to check the meat's temperature before you pronounced it cooked. Eating ribs that have been cooked only until they reach a lower temperature can result in illness.


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Post 1

Personally, I like to parboil a rack of ribs before I use any high heat, fast cooking method like broiling or barbecuing. It's hard to get the deepest layer of meat completely done if the ribs aren't slow-cooked. Parboiling reaches the meat closest to the bone and at least gets it to a safe temperature for cooking.

If I'm going to use a "low heat, slow cooking" method, like a crockpot or low temperature oven, I won't parboil the spare ribs. They'll have enough time to cook all the way through after 12 hours of constant but low heat. By low, I mean 200 to 250 degrees Fahrenheit at most.

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