Southwestern Seasoned Smoked Ribs

Smoked ribs on the grill
Smoked Ribs on the Grill:

The weather forecast on Saturday here in Western New York was calling for dangerous thunderstorms, but that wasn’t the case. The day turned out to be a beautiful day of sunshine with temperatures in the 80’s. So, it was time to try some smoked ribs on the grill.

After cleaning off the deck I took my propane tank for the gas grill and got it filled up. I wanted to make sure that I had enough propane for my first try at smoking ribs using the gas grill.

After reading so many great smoker recipes from Old Fat Guy Cooking on his Louisiana Pellet Grill. I just had to try to get some of that smoked flavor that he is always talking about. Click the link to see all of his amazing smoker recipes and much more. In my opinion, he is a master at this.

I picked up a nice rack of back ribs at the store, along with a bag of Applewood smoking chips. I decided to use the Southwestern rub similar to the one I used in this recipe, Grilled Southwestern Chicken Breasts. I changed it up a bit by adding some Cajun seasoning and ground black pepper.

Meat Rub Recipe:

1 Tbsp. chili powder
2 Tsp. ground cumin
1 Tsp. coriander
½ Tsp. onion powder
½ Tsp. garlic powder
½ Tsp. dried oregano
½ Tsp. paprika
1 Tsp. sea salt

After mixing and shaking the rub, I cut the back ribs in half and brushed them with olive oil. Then I hand rubbed the mixture onto both sides until it was all used up. I covered the ribs and set them in the refrigerator for 2 hours.

Dry rub recipes ribs

I wrapped up four packages of the Applewood chips in tin foil, a handful in each package, and poked holes in the top. I heated the grill on the high setting and placed the ribs directly on the rack for 2 minutes per side.  

Then I moved the ribs to the upper rack of the grill, turned one side of the grill off and lowered the other side to just above the low setting. I place the packages of wood chips on the surface and closed the lid.

My goal was to try and maintain a 250-degree internal temperature of the grill. I was just guessing at this point; I don’t have a surface thermometer for my grill.

After one hour and 45 minutes, I had 150-degree internal temperature of the ribs. I needed to get to 180 degrees. At this point, I turned the second burner on to the same setting.

It took another 45 minutes to reach 180 degrees. After I turned the second burner on I had to put out a couple of fires using a spray bottle of water.

I removed the ribs and covered them to let them rest for about 15 minutes. The total cook time was 2-1/2 hours.

The outside of the ribs had a nice tasty crust, and the inside was juicy and tender with a nice smoked flavor from the Applewood chips.

The result: Sweet Smoked Baby Back Ribs

sweet smoked baby back ribs

I was pretty happy with the outcome for my first attempt at smoking on the gas grill. I think I need to buy a surface thermometer for my grill to give me more control. I was experimenting here and everything was a guess to control the temperature of the grill.

As always thanks for stopping by, and I hope you enjoyed.


  1. Oh, my, your smoked ribs sound so good! Sadly, our grill is too small to use this method. Perhaps we'll get another, bigger one someday. Happily, though, our grill does have a built-in surface thermometer which we find very helpful when grilling just about anything. A thermometer probably would be a good investment for you as well, especially since I have a feeling your gas grill gets a good workout throughout the warmer months!

    1. I don't know Susan my grill is pretty small also. I think it's the smallest in this series of grills. I'm going to to buy a surface thermometer, my grill will also have one built in. I need to do more of this smoking the flavor was amazing! Thanks for stopping by :)

  2. I usually let my brothers do the smoking, but you are making me want to try it myself. I love ribs, and smoked pork butt, and brisket, and sausage, and...

    1. Either way Carlee the smoked flavor is amazing, if you try it let me know how it goes. Thanks so much for stopping by.

  3. These look wonderful, Sam, and you are too generous with giving me credit.

    1. They did come out great for my first time David. I'll need to save my pennies for a smoker, until then this worked out just fine. You are an inspiration with your recipes. I would have never tried this if not for you. Thanks!!!

  4. Ribs are one of my all time favorite meals but I always eat them in restaurants. I have never grilled my own. Your smoked ribs certainly look delicious and you made it sound easy enough that maybe I could handle it. Thanks for sharing the steps, information and the recipe!

  5. They were really delicious Cynthia, and easy to make just a little time consuming. I wanted to make sure I cooked them slow so I had really tender ribs. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing my recipe!

  6. They look so good Sam. They make my mouth water. I really do want some ribs.

    1. Thank you Brenda, they were mouth watering. It took a little time but well worth it.

  7. These sound lovely. I shall pass this recipe on to my personal chef! :)

    1. They were were very good for the first time I tried smoking!! Hope yours turn out as well :) Thanks for stopping by Bill.

  8. Don't know how I missed this article last summer. Love smoked ribs. Thanks so much for the recipe.

    1. You are always most welcome Pat!! These ribs were really delicious!! Thanks!


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