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Make Ahead Ribs. Braised then grilled!

Make Ahead Ribs. Braised then grilled! Learn how to slow braise the ribs in the oven the day before then grill and glaze them to sticky perfection the next day.

Make Ahead Ribs close up photo of individually cut ribs

Make Ahead Ribs. Braised then grilled!

This recipe allow you to enjoy finger lickin’ good ribs on weeknights too!

That’s because the slow, tender cooking of the meat can take place the day before. Twenty minutes or so on a low grill is all it takes to completely reheat them and glaze them to perfection.

Tender, fall-off-the-bone ribs need one most important thing to be really perfect. That thing is simply time.

Slow cooking is the only way to achieve perfect ribs. However, that requires hours of slow smoking or indirect grilling to work and most people only have time to do that on the weekends.

Make Ahead Ribs wide shot of ribs on a serving platter with salad in the background.

Braised then grilled!

My solution for weekday ribs is to split the cooking into 2 distinct and very simple stages. 2 1/2 hours in the oven the night before when you are watching TV or doing housework, then dinner in minutes the next night when you finish them on a grill.

I learned this in my very short time as a line cook in my early twenties. Nobody could ever tell that they were pre-cooked.

Uncooked pork ribs on a wooden cutting board

Pork side ribs or back ribs can be used in this recipe.

Braising is the key to tender ribs.

The braising also allows you to separate the natural meat juices from the fat that is rendered out in the oven. You can then save this pork stock to mix 1/2 and 1/2 with your favourite BBQ Sauce to mop on the ribs as they reheat and get a little char on them.

Make Ahead Ribs with chive flower garnish

Braised then grilled!

This works incredibly well to keep the ribs from drying out as they are reheating. I used my latest recipe for Smoky Spice Honey BBQ Sauce on the ribs and they were incredibly delicious but I’d also recommend our Maple Chipotle BBQ Sauce too.

I like to use St. Louis style side ribs for this recipe because they are much meatier but you can use baby back ribs too, just note the adjustment in oven time.

Make Ahead Ribs

Ribs taken out of the fridge the next day..

One last tip is to always cook your ribs in half racks. I always do this because they are much easier to handle on the grill.

I find as they get toward the end of the grilling time a full rack is far more likely to break apart. Turning them multiple times in the glazing process is required and half racks are easier to handle

Make Ahead Ribs

Gazed several times to perfection.

A dry rub is needed to season these ribs. You your favourite or make up a batch of my Smokin’ Summer Spice Dry Rub recipe. You’ll use that on everything, trust me!

Smokin' Summer Spice Dry Rub photo of spices in mason jar with title text added for Pinterest

We have some great side dish inspiration too!

Including everything from baked beans & corn bread to deliciously different potato and pasta salads. Be sure to check them all out in our collection of 35 Best BBQ Side Dishes too. 

26 Best Barbecue Side Dishes photo collage for Pinterest

Originally published Aug 2016. Updated June 2020.

Like this make ahead ribs recipe?

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Plus you’ll see daily recipe suggestions from decadent desserts to quick delicious weekday meals too. 

Make Ahead Ribs photo with title text for Pinterest

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Make Ahead Ribs close up photo of individually cut ribs
Yield: 4 Servings

Make Ahead Ribs - braised, then grilled!

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 50 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 55 minutes

Make Ahead Ribs - braised then grilled! Learn how to slow braise the ribs in the oven the day before then grill and glaze them to sticky perfection the next day.

Ingredients

  • 2 large racks of St. Louis style side ribs, or back ribs if you prefer.
  • Smokin' Summer Spice Dry Rub or other dry rub.
  • 3/4 cup of your favourite BBQ Sauce
  • 3/4 cup of the reserved pork stock from braising the ribs.

Instructions

  1. Cut the racks of ribs in half. Remove the silver skin from the back sides of the ribs if you prefer. (I remove it by loosening it with the handle of a spoon then tearing it off on long strips.)
  2. Season lightly with salt and completely cover the ribs with a dusting of your favourite dry rub. Try my recipe for Smokin' Summer Spice Dry Rub.
  3. Wrap each half rack of ribs in aluminum foil, rolling and pressing the edges together to get a good seal. Now add a second layer of sealed aluminum foil to each one of the half racks as well. Place the wrapped pork ribs on a balking sheet
  4. Preheat oven to 275 degrees F and cook the ribs undisturbed for 2 hours and 30 minutes. (1 hour and 30 minutes for back ribs)
  5. Carefully tear open a corner of each of the foil packets and drain the liquid off of the ribs into a small bowl or large measuring cup. Let the juices cool completely in the fridge so that the fat is easily removed from the top and discarded.
  6. Chill the ribs for several hours or overnight. The precooking can be done up to 2 days in advance.
  7. Preheat the grill to low heat and gently begin to reheat the ribs, turning often.
  8. Mix the BBQ Sauce and pork stock together and begin to brush the ribs with the
  9. mixture as you turn and reheat the ribs,
  10. Take your time with this. I usually take 20 - 25 minutes to get them completely heated through and fall off the bone tender. It's worth the time!

Nutrition Information

Yield

4

Serving Size

1 serving

Amount Per Serving Calories 505Total Fat 30gSaturated Fat 10gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 123mgSodium 707mgCarbohydrates 24gFiber 1gSugar 18gProtein 35g
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LanaG

Wednesday 9th of September 2020

Sounds delicious!! Will definitely have to try this recipe. Thank you. :)

I was searching Google for a recipe to pre-cook a solid piece (1 side) of lamb ribs (fat trimmed) in the oven before finishing it on the barbeque?

Your recipe popped up in the results and it lured me. Do you perhaps have a recipe for such lamb ribs which I can pre-cook at home and then take it to a barbeque the next day to finish it on the barbeque. I am a novice cook, thus not sure if the method above can be applied to lamb meat (?).

Any ideas / recipe would be appreciated.

With thanks and best wishes from South Africa :)

Anita Christamtsis

Saturday 15th of August 2020

I'm doing these in the oven right now and the house smells heavenly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Susan M. L

Thursday 23rd of July 2020

My ribs were fabulous! I have made them before but am always second guessing the temperature and came across your recipe. They are wrapped on foil and cooking on a rack in my electric roaster, set at 375 degrees. I make my own Emeril's Essence and used it last week and again today as I made them for a second time. I pour some chicken broth in the bottom in lieu of a Dark ale. They were excellent last week and I anticipate that they will be just as good tomorrow. I will try one of your rubs next time and perhaps one or two of your BBQ recipes which I imagine will be just as delicious! Thank you.

Kandee

Thursday 2nd of July 2020

I’d love to try but I don’t Grill, can these be broiled in the oven instead?

Sue

Saturday 20th of June 2020

Making these for Father’s Day! Great to be able to make them a day ahead, go to Church the next day, and come home to warm them on the grill! Thanks for the Recipe!

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