Go BIG (ribs) for Father’s Day! How-to cook BIG beef back ribs.

Beef back ribs are BIG – and they make a big impression for Father’s Day! They come from a premium cut – PRIME RIB, but if you cook them like a Prime Rib Roast, you’ll likely be a bit disappointed. So, just how do you cook up these impressive big bones? We did some digging to get you the best option!

I know from experience — if you cook Beef Back Ribs slow roasted in dry heat either in the oven or on the grill — covered or uncovered, they became almost dehydrated — instead of delicious! I turned to my colleagues at the newly opened Canadian Beef Centre of Excellence for help. Here’s what Chef Marty and butcher extrodinaire Abe had to share on just what to buy and how they turn these BIG GUYS into something that’s truly delicious (and impressive)!:


“I grill or smoke Beef Back Ribs and then slow braise in barbecue sauce – that’s what works for me! The grilling or smoking step renders out some of the fat and infuses the meat with great smoke flavour”. 


“Beef Rib Bones or Beef Back Ribs are found on the Prime Rib. These are sometimes hard to find in grocery stores but do tend to be a bit more available in summer — ask for them at your meat counter or butcher if you’re having trouble finding them.”

Here’s a short video from The Centre of Excellence on how Beef Back Ribs are ‘made’ and what you should look for when you buy them.

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I tried out the ribs 3 ways – and hands down, the Grilling + Braising method combined (as Chef Marty recommended) was the best:

Ribs_1 Ribs_2 Ribs_3

  1. Top Left-Chef Marty’s Way: Grilling + Braising Method (Recommended): Rib is seasoned, grilled and slow oven-braised in foil pouch with a bit of liquid (bbq sauce and water)
  2. Lower Left: Slow Roasted Covered Method (2nd best): Rib is seasoned, grilled and slow oven-roasted in foil pouch – no liquid.
  3. Right:  Slow Roast Dry Heat Method (least preferred): Rib is seasoned and slow oven-roasted UNCOVERED.

Our friends at EatInEatOut™ worked on a couple of great sauces for us, cooking ribs up using the Slow Roast Dry Heat Method, take a look…

BBQ Beef Ribs with Spicy Pineapple Rum Sauce_2

And here is one from Canada Beef – with Chef Marty’s method adapted:


BIG Barbecued Beef Ribs
Recipe Type: Entree
Cuisine: American
Author: makeitbeef
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 3-4 servings
Not for sissy’s, this gooey beef rib recipe offers rib-eating satisfaction from ear to ear and are great for dramatic presentation.
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 rack Beef Grilling Back Ribs (about 7 ribs long), approx 3 lb (1.5 kg)
  • 1/2 cup barbecue sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 can (14 oz/398 ml) tomato sauce
  • 1/3 cup EACH maple syrup and red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp. EACH minced canned chipolte peppers and Worcestershire sauce
  1. Season ribs with salt and pepper and grill over medium-high heat for 5 to 10 minutes, turning occasionally until browned all over. Place on a thick sheet of foil on a baking sheet. Thin barbecue sauce with 2 to 3 tbsp water; pour over ribs. Over-wrap with another sheet of foil and crimp up edges to make a foil pouch.
  2. Roast in 250°F (120°C) oven for 3 hours or until meat is fork tender.
  3. Meanwhile sauté garlic and onion in a bit of vegetable oil until softened. Stir in remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer. Remove from heat. Reserve approximately 1 cup (250 mL) of sauce for dipping.
  4. Brush ribs all over with the remaining sauce. If desired, grill briefly to set the sauce. Serve ribs with reserved sauce for dipping.



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