Spareribs Cooking Tips

Over-Marination Can Cure the Ribs

Grilled spare-ribs with rosemary
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  • Select meat that is pink with white (not gray or yellow) fat.
  • Cook within 3 to 4 days or freeze up to 3 months. Due to high-fat content, even properly-frozen spareribs can deteriorate rapidly and turn rancid if not used timely.
  • Avoid thawed, previously-frozen spareribs.
  • Plan on 1 to 1-1/2 pounds per person when purchasing spareribs.
  • Remove the thin membrane on the backside of the ribs before cooking, if the butcher has not done so. Loosen a corner with a sharp knife, grip tightly and tear from the ribs.
  • General baking instructions: bake at 325 F for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  • If you plan on marinating the ribs in a liquid or spice rub for more than 4 hours, choose a marinade with very little salt. The salt will begin to cure the ribs resulting in a flavor more like ham or bacon.
  • When finishing spareribs on the grill, add the sauce during the last few minutes to avoid flare-ups and burns or just after removing from the grill.
  • If you wish to use your marinade as a basting or baking sauce, be sure to boil it for about 5 minutes before reusing.
  • When oven-baking spareribs, place the ribs on a rack inside a baking pan lined with foil so the fat can drip off.
  • When the ribs are done, the meat will shrink back from the tips of the bones and the bone should wiggle easily in the meat.
  • In general, plan on at least 1 1/2 hours to braise ribs.
  • For baking, plan on 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours.
  • The large end of the rack will generally have more meat.
  • Baby back rib and sparerib recipes can be used interchangeably in most cases.

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