The Best Way to Smoke Boneless Ribs

Different types of wood result in slightly different smoking flavors.
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Smoking boneless ribs on the grill not only gives it a delicious smokey flavor but will also keep the meat tender as this method slowly cooks the meat indirectly. But regardless of whether your ribs are beef or pork, when you cook ribs on the grill, you can run the risk of overcooking them.


Smoking ribs takes significantly longer to cook thoroughly, since indirectly cooking meat uses the excess heat and smoke as opposed to the direct flame. So keep a close eye on the clock. Here's how to smoke boneless ribs on the grill so that they're tender and flavorful.

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How to Smoke Boneless Ribs

  1. Prepare the ribs before smoking. If the ribs are frozen, defrost well in advance of cooking.
  2. Soak the ribs in marinade or cover them in a sauce of your choosing before cooking.
  3. Prepare the smoker while the meat is marinating. Place some balled-up newspaper into the bottom of the charcoal chimney and fill the chimney with the lump charcoal. Light the newspaper and allow the fire to ignite all of the charcoal for 10 to 15 minutes.
  4. Wait until the charcoal is ready, then place it into the charcoal pan in the bottom of the smoker.
  5. Place about one quart of water into the water pan and place the grate over the smoker.
  6. Place the meat onto the smoker and close the lid on top.
  7. Open the access door on the side of the smoker and place about 6 pieces of wood on top of the heated coals.
  8. Smoke the ribs for about 2.5 to 3 hours, depending on the type of meat and how hot your grill is.
  9. Check the internal temperature of the meat to see if it's safe to eat. Beef is safe to eat at 145 degrees Fahrenheit, according to Pork however must be cooked to at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
  10. Remove the ribs from the smoker once done, allow them to cool before serving.


Try experimenting with different types of wood to give your ribs slightly different flavors. For example, apple wood will give your meat a different flavor than oak or pine.

After smoking your ribs for about an hour, you can wrap them in aluminum foil and allow them to finish cooking to make them extra tender.