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How to Make BBQ Bacon Wrapped Ribs

Let the drooling begin! Then give these a try. Your tastebuds (and anyone else who is lucky enough to dig in) will thank you.

When we, here at Outdoor Cooking, heard what Gary House over at Cooking-Outdoors was fixing, we were pretty excited. BBQ Bacon Wrapped Ribs sounded amazing. Then we saw pictures and the video of these things... It was cruel and unusual punishment to have to look at these mouth watering ribs and not be able to take a bite!

BBQ Bacon Wrapped Ribs

By: Gary House

BBQ BBQ, Bacon Bacon, Ribs Ribs Ribs … Oh My!

If I was looking for the perfect Fathers Day meal, well this would be on the top of my list. With Fathers day being just a few days away I thought I would show you how to make BBQ Bacon Wrapped Ribs using my Homemade BBQ SauceBasic BBQ Rub and the Camp Chef Big Gas Grill.

Whenever you can combine Bacon, Ribs and BBQ into one delicious meal you have a winning BBQ recipe. You probably won’t find this on too many restaurant menus either, so lets get cooking!

You will need a full rack of Saint Louis cut pork ribs and about a pound of medium to thin cut bacon. I use the Saint Louis cut pork ribs because they are trimmed to just the right size for wrapping in bacon, Baby Back ribs would work also but the Saint Louis cut is my choice every time. Stay clear of the thick cut bacon on this recipe as the thicker size doesn’t cook all the way through to the crispy stage, I think this is important when you take that delicious first bite out of one of your BBQ Bacon Wrapped Ribs, you want a crunch before the tender moist rib meat. Layers of flavor and texture!

The first steps required to prepare the ribs are standard: wash, pat dry and remove the membrane. You have seen me do this many times so I won’t bore you with the basic details again.

Step two will require some knife skills. We are going to remove every other bone from our rack of ribs, creating a double cut of meat on each side of a single rib. You will need a sharp knife and a bit of patience but I assure you it is very easy to do.

  • Using a chefs knife cut along the edge of one bone at a slight angle to cut under the bone and cut completely through the meat.
  • Then approach the other side of the bone and do the same thing, going back under the bone to remove as much meat as possible.
  • Skip one bone and repeat the process.

You can see the removed bone in the above picture to get an idea of what I am referring to.

So if you have a 13 bone rack of ribs you will end up with 7 double cut ribs as pictured above. Each rib has one bone with double the amount of meat on each side of the rib bone.

Once your ribs are cut it is time to apply a basic binder, I prefer honey mustard, just a light coat is all you need. (It is easiest if you do this in a re-closeable plastic bag)

Apply your favorite rub or use my favorite: Steve Raichlen’s Basic BBQ Rub Recipe.

Once your ribs are properly seasoned, it is time to apply the magic power of the bacon.

The bacon will serve three purposes:

  1. Act as a self baster so you don’t have to foil the ribs.
  2. Add an additional flavor profile.
  3. Provide a delicious crisp bite to the ribs.

Wrap each rib with one or two pieces of bacon.

This is how I set up my Camp Chef Big Gas Grill for smoking. What you don’t see in this picture but is absolutely critical is a drip pan under the grilling grate on the left. The bacon and ribs drip lots of grease and this will pool and flow along the bottom of the BBQ box, if it gets to hot or close to the burner on the right it can cause a fire.

I used a foil tray that I made out of aluminum foil, rolled up the sides and slide it under the grilling grate.

The foil on the right is to hold the smoking chips, I used cherry smoking chips for my BBQ.

The Camp Chef BBQ box sits on top of two 30,000 BTU burners, turn the burner on the right on and set it to low, the left burner remains off.

Your grill should look like this when you start smoking.

My Camp Chef Big Gas Grill holds at 250° F in this configuration with the right burner set to low.

Cherry chips were not soaked prior to using them.

The chips will start smoldering soon after you turn the burner on, check them every 30 minutes to replace as needed.

About 2 1/2 hours into the smoke. Bacon has crisped up and the meat is retracting from the ends of the bones – a good sign.

Because there is so much meat surround each bone I was able to easily take an internal temperature with my instant read thermometer. You are looking for a finished temperature of 185° to 195° F

I replaced the chips 3 times during the first 2 1/2 hours

At the 2 1/2 hour mark I started to sauce my ribs with my Homemade BBQ Sauce recipe.

3 1/4 hrs total cook time!

Compare that to a 6 hr rib cook with the traditional 3 – 2 – 1 method and you can see some time savings.

Enjoy!

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