What Are Bacon Ribs? (Explained By Experts)

Bacon is a beloved food that has become a staple in many households. But have you ever heard of bacon ribs?

These meaty and flavorful cuts are not your typical pork ribs. Bacon ribs are made from the loin of the bacon, giving them a taste that is similar to regular bacon but with a meatier texture.

They are cured and smoked to perfection, making them a delicious addition to any meal. In this article, we will explore what bacon ribs are, how they are made, and some delicious ways to enjoy them.

So sit back, relax, and get ready to learn about this unique and tasty cut of meat.

What Are Bacon Ribs?

As mentioned earlier, bacon ribs are cut from the loin of the bacon. This means that they have a meatier texture and taste similar to regular bacon. However, they are not as commonly found as other pork ribs.

Bacon ribs are cured and smoked to perfection, giving them a unique flavor that is both savory and smoky. They are often used in stews or roasted with stuffed cabbage to add an extra layer of flavor.

How Are Bacon Ribs Made?

The process of making bacon ribs involves curing and smoking pork ribs with a variety of spices and seasonings. The silver skin is removed from the back of the ribs, and the spices are generously rubbed onto both sides of the pork. The ribs are then smoked between 210°F to 225°F for 6 to 8 hours, with three strips of bacon laid across the top to infuse them with bacon flavor.

To ensure even cooking, the ribs should be flipped every couple of hours, with the bacon placed on top of the other rack of ribs or the grill while flipping. The ribs are done when the meat easily pulls away from the bone. To finish the ribs, the paint, fire, and flip method is used to sear the BBQ sauce onto the outside of the ribs without burning or drying them out.

Another method involves curing pork ribs with a traditional recipe for 2/3 days to make succulent and flavorful bacon ribs. These are slowly simmered for over an hour and glazed with honey before finishing off in the oven. This results in finger-licking deliciousness that can be served with cabbage, onion mash or other classic Irish dishes.

Bacon ribs can also be made by curing pork belly with the ribs, which is lightly smoked and must be cooked before adding it to stews or roasting it in the oven. This adds a unique flavor to any dish and is perfect for those who prefer meat on the bones for better flavor and value for money.

What Makes Bacon Ribs Different From Regular Pork Ribs?

Bacon ribs are different from regular pork ribs in a few ways. Firstly, they are cut from a different part of the pig – the loin – compared to regular pork ribs which are usually cut from the belly or underbelly. This means that bacon ribs have a different texture and flavor profile compared to regular pork ribs.

Another difference is that bacon ribs are cured and smoked, which adds a unique flavor to them. Regular pork ribs may be seasoned with dry rubs or marinades, but they are not typically cured or smoked.

Additionally, bacon ribs may have less meat on them compared to regular pork ribs because the loin is a smaller section of the pig. This means that bacon ribs may not be as meaty as other types of pork ribs.

Tips For Cooking Bacon Ribs Perfectly

Cooking bacon ribs can be a bit tricky, but with the right techniques, you can achieve perfectly cooked and delicious bacon ribs. Here are some tips to help you cook bacon ribs perfectly:

1. Soak the bacon ribs in water for 30 minutes prior to cooking: This helps to remove any excess saltiness from the ribs.

2. Remove the lining under the ribs: After boiling the ribs, it’s easy to remove the lining by scraping it with the back of a small knife or spoon.

3. Use the 3-2-1 method: This method involves smoking the ribs for 3 hours, wrapping them in foil or butcher paper for 2 hours, and then finishing them with sauce for an hour. Instead of using foil, you can use bacon to wrap the ribs for a tastier result.

4. Smoke the ribs low and slow: The lower and slower you smoke the ribs, the better they will be. Smoke them between 210°F to 225°F for 6 to 8 hours.

5. Infuse the ribs with bacon: Lay three strips of bacon across the top of the ribs while they’re smoking to infuse them with bacon flavor.

6. Flip the ribs every couple of hours: To ensure even cooking, flip the ribs every couple of hours while they’re smoking.

7. Finish with a paint, fire, and flip method: Sear the sauce onto the outside of the ribs without burning it or drying out the meat by using a paint, fire, and flip method. Paint BBQ sauce across the ribs, flip them over, paint again, and repeat until each side has been painted three times.

By following these tips, you can cook bacon ribs perfectly every time and enjoy their unique savory and smoky flavor.

Delicious Ways To Enjoy Bacon Ribs

Bacon ribs are a versatile ingredient that can be used in a variety of dishes. Here are some delicious ways to enjoy bacon ribs:

1. Maple Brown Sugar Bacon Ribs: Turn your bacon ribs into candied bacon by smoking them for 2 hours, then basting them with a slurry of maple syrup and hot sauce and patting on a generous pile of brown sugar. Smoke for one more hour until the sugar dissolves and the bacon hardens like a salty, sweet candy.

2. Bacon Bourbon BBQ Ribs: Infuse your barbecue ribs with bacony goodness by using thick strips of bacon. Pair them with a homemade Bacon Bourbon BBQ Sauce for a rich, smoky flavor and sublime texture.

3. Slow-Cooked Bacon Ribs: To cook bacon ribs in a slow cooker, cut the racks into chunks and presoak them in cold water for at least 3 hours to reduce saltiness. Add 2 cups of water to the slow cooker and cook on high for 4-5 hours without removing the lid.

4. Bacon for Breakfast: Enjoy a savory breakfast by incorporating bacon ribs into classic dishes like bacon, egg, and cheese sandwiches or breakfast tarts. Or try something new like bacon-cheddar oatmeal scones or bacon weave breakfast tacos (with bacon instead of tortillas).

5. Bacon for Lunch: Add bacon ribs to classic lunch options like BLT or club sandwiches, burgers, or hearty salads. Or try something unique like garlic herb wedge salad or Snoop Dogg’s BBQ chicken Cobb (with his special way of cooking bacon).

6. Bacon Snacks: Need a salty, satisfying snack? Try making bacon avocado fries, bacon-wrapped jalapeño poppers, cheesy bacon spinach dip, or bacon-wrapped dates. They also make great party appetizers that are sure to impress your guests.