Master the Grill: Cook Perfect Ribs Every Time in 60 Mins

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Ribs cooking on a bbq grill


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Outdoor Cooking


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Grilling up the perfect ribs doesn’t have to be complicated. With the right techniques and some patience, you can achieve delicious and juicy results every time!

Read on to learn the steps for how long to cook ribs on a grill, plus our favorite tips and tricks.

Ribs cooking on a bbq grill

Preparing the Grill

Before you begin cooking the ribs on the grill, it is important to prepare the grill properly.

This includes:

Additionally, you will want to adjust the flame so that it is not too high or too low. Once the grill is prepped, you can begin cooking your ribs.

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Preheating the Grill

Before laying the ribs on the grill , it is important to preheat the grill. This will ensure that the ribs cook evenly and that they are not exposed to too much direct heat.

According to experts, grills should be preheated to 300F degrees and maintained throughout the cooking process.

Depending on the size of your grill, you may need up to two hours to reach this temperature.

Once the grill is preheated, the ribs can be laid directly over the grates and cooked for the desired amount of time.

Laying the Ribs on the Grill

Once the grill is preheated, it’s time to lay the ribs on the grill. Place the ribs on the grill with the meat side down.

You can use tongs to ensure that each rib is placed evenly and securely over the heat. Once all of the ribs are in place, you can cover the grill and begin cooking.

Be sure to keep an eye on them as they cook, turning them occasionally to ensure even cooking.

Additionally, if you are using barbecue sauce, you can brush it onto the ribs once they have been on the grill for about 15 minutes.

This will help create a delicious flavor and make sure that each rib is evenly covered.

Cooking the Ribs on Direct Heat

Once the grill is preheated and the ribs are laid on the grill, it’s time to start cooking.

You can use direct heat to cook your ribs, but be sure to keep an eye on them, as direct heat can cause them to cook too fast.

When using direct heat, start by keeping the ribs at least four inches away from the heat source.

Turn the ribs every five minutes and move them further away from the heat source if they start to cook too quickly.

Depending on your grill, you may need to adjust the temperature of your grill accordingly.

Cook for at least 15 minutes, or until the ribs have reached an internal temperature of 190°F.

Cooking the Ribs on Indirect Heat

Once the grill is preheated, it’s time to lay the ribs on the grill. Start by making sure they are over indirect heat and not directly over a flame or coals.

Indirect heat is key in grilling ribs so that they don’t get too hot too fast; they need to cook for a long time, and direct heat will cause them to burn.

Whether you opt for a charcoal grill or a gas grill, cook these spice-rubbed ribs over indirect heat for a little over an hour.

The key to grilling ribs slowly and low is to maintain a relatively low temperature while grilling with indirect heat; the easiest way to do this is to keep the lid closed as much as possible.

Cover the grill and cook, rotating once or twice, until the meat is tender and the internal temperature reaches somewhere between 180 and 195°F.

Adding Barbecue Sauce

Once the ribs are cooked, it’s time to add barbeque sauce. This can be done either directly on the ribs, or by brushing them on during the last few minutes of grilling.

When applying the sauce, it’s important to use a brush or spoon to avoid burning your hands on the hot grill.

If you’re using a store-bought sauce, make sure to read the label to ensure that it is safe for grilling.

Additionally, keep an eye out for any flare-ups when you’re brushing on the sauce. Finally, be sure not to apply too much sauce; otherwise, the flavor will become overwhelming and mask the flavor of the ribs.

Using Aluminum Foil

Using aluminum foil is an effective way to cook ribs on the grill. Wrapping the ribs in foil before placing them on the grill helps to keep them moist and juicy while they cook.

After brushing the cooking grates clean, place the ribs on your handi-foil pan and cover tightly with aluminum foil.

Place the pan back on the grill over direct medium-low heat and close the lid. Cook for 40 minutes to an hour, or until the ribs are done, rotating the packets halfway through cooking.

When finished, carefully remove the ribs from the foil packets and brush them with the barbecue sauce mixture before returning them to the grill for a few minutes.

Remember to always check for doneness before removing from heat.

Rotating the Ribs

Once the ribs have been laid on the grill, they should be rotated approximately every 20 minutes to ensure even cooking.

To help guarantee that the ribs will get an even char, it is important to move them around while they are cooking.

It is also necessary to rotate the ribs to make sure they are not burning. If you are using direct heat, you should rotate them every 45 minutes or so.

If you are using indirect heat, you should rotate them every 40 minutes. This will help prevent the ribs from sticking to the grill and give them an even cook.

Additionally, rotating the ribs will ensure that all of the flavors from your barbecue sauce is spread evenly throughout the slab.

Checking for Doneness

Once the ribs have been cooking for the desired amount of time, it’s important to check for doneness.

The USDA recommends cooking pork ribs to an internal temperature of 145° F for safety reasons.

However, at this temperature, the meat is rubbery and tough. To get tender, juicy ribs, you’ll need to cook them beyond the USDA recommendation.

The toothpick test is simple, take a toothpick and insert it into the meaty sections of your rack. If it slides into the meat, without resistance, then the ribs are ready to eat.

Another way to check doneness is by using a thermometer; if you can get a good temperature reading without puncturing the rib too much then this method can be effective.

Ultimately, a combination of both methods should be used to ensure optimum tenderness and flavor.

Cleaning Up Afterward

Once the ribs have been cooked to perfection, it’s time to clean up. The first step is to turn off the grill and allow it to cool completely before any cleaning begins.

Remove any remaining charcoal or ashes from the firebox, and dispose of them safely.

Once the grill has cooled off, use a wire brush or a damp cloth to wipe down the grate and remove any food debris that may be stuck.

If you used a marinade or sauce on your ribs, make sure all of it has been scraped off, as this could cause flare-ups when the grill is next used.

Finally, store your grill in a cool and dry spot until you’re ready to use it again.

Can the Same Grilling Techniques Be Applied to Both Ribs and Brats?

When it comes to grilling, the same grill perfect brats recipe can be applied to both ribs and brats. Low heat, slow cooking, and occasional flipping are key to ensuring both meats are tender and flavorful. Whether it’s ribs or brats, mastering the grill can result in delicious, juicy results.


Grilling ribs is a great way to enjoy a delicious meal, but it does take some time and patience to get it just right. With the right setup and the right temperature, you can cook ribs in just a few hours.

To prepare, trim and remove the back membrane, preheat your grill, lay the ribs on the grill, cook them on direct heat, add barbecue sauce and foil if desired, rotate them occasionally, and check for doneness.

Then you can enjoy your meal and clean up afterward. With a little practice and some patience, you can be sure to have perfectly cooked ribs every time.