How to Reheat Ribs

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I’m sure your ribs are so delicious that you never have leftovers (if you don’t, we have a 3-2-1 pork ribs recipe that may assist).

However, if you over-catered and end up with any leftover ribs, you’ll want to know how to reheat them properly.

To prevent reheating your ribs and having them turn into a dried out disaster, we’ll teach you how to properly store your ribs to lock in as much moisture as possible, as well as a couple alternative warming procedures to keep them soft and appetizing.

How to reheat ribs without drying them out

How to Reheat Ribs

The key to rewarming ribs without them turning into a dried-out stringy mess is careful storage.

When freezing or refrigerating ribs, you must take precautions to retain as much moisture as possible.

We’ll go over some particular warming ways later in the post, but first, here are some crucial storage and reheating suggestions to help you get the most out of your leftover rack.

  • Refrigerate your ribs immediately. The longer your meat sits in the Danger Zone between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit, the faster bacteria colonies like Staphylococcus aureus, Salmonella, and E. coli begin to proliferate.
  • The simplest approach to swiftly cool your ribs is to chop them into single-serving chunks. Depending on how much you like your ribs, this usually involves chopping a rack in half or thirds.
  • After cutting the rack into sections, wrap them in a double layer of foil, put them in a waterproof plastic bag, and place them in an ice-filled cooler. Don’t keep meat out in the open for more than two hours.
  • To prevent moisture loss, store your ribs in a sealed container, zip lock bag, or, even better, a vacuum-packed bag.
  • According to USDA recommendations, get your ribs back up to an internal temperature of at least 145 F to eliminate any leftover germs.
  • Cooking, reheating, refrigeration, and freezing will all dehydrate your ribs. As a result, while warming them, you will need to put moisture back in. For beef ribs, a dash of broth or coke works well, while apple juice or cider vinegar works well for pig ribs.
  • When it comes time to reheat your ribs, try to avoid using high direct heat. To keep the ribs wet, you cooked them low and slow, which is the ideal method to reheat them.

Reheating ribs in the oven 

Matthew Register, proprietor of Southern Smoke BBQ in Garland, prefers to reheat ribs in the oven.

To protect the meat from drying out, he recommends the following steps:

  • Preheat your oven to 250F.
  • If you cooked your ribs in a sauce, add another layer of sauce or a little liquid, such as coke, broth, or beer, to keep the meat moist.
  • Place the ribs in a pan and cover with foil.
  • Cook your leftover ribs until the internal temperature reaches 145F.
  • Remove the foil and simmer for another 10 to 15 minutes to allow the sauce to caramelize and bring the bark back to life.
  • If you put a spice rub on your ribs, wait until they are warmed before re-covering them with the rub.

Use the Sous Vide method to reheat ribs

Sous vide, which translates to “under vacuum,” is a method of cooking food that is enclosed in a plastic bag in a hot water bath. If you already use a vacuum sealer to keep your food, this is great since you can remove the ribs from the fridge or freezer and place them directly into the Sous vide.

You can use a sous vide cooker, but you can also use a big saucepan on the stovetop.

  • Bring your sous vide machine or a large stove-top saucepan of water to 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • pot.Insert the vacuum bags containing the leftover ribs into the machine.
  • Allow the bags to soak in the hot water bath for 45 minutes per inch of thickness.
  • If you’re cooking frozen ribs, keep them in the oven for an extra 30 minutes.
  • Because the bag is sealed and sous vide utilizes indirect heat to cook your meat, you don’t need to add any more moisture.

This kind of vacuum sealer is quite useful in the kitchen for keeping and reheating barbeque leftovers.

Reheat ribs in the air fryer

An air fryer simulates deep fat frying by using focused hot air. This makes it ideal for reheating ribs while maintaining a nice crust on the exterior.

Unfortunately, the air fryer does not function well with wet food, so ribs with a dry rub are better suited than those saturated in BBQ sauce.

  • Set your air fryer to preheat to 350 F.
  • Slice your ribs so that they will fit nicely in your air fryer without being crammed in. When the air fryer is overloaded, the hot air cannot circulate, and part of your ribs will not reach the all-important 140F temperature.
  • provide a tablespoon of oil to keep your ribs from drying out and to provide some crispiness to the bark.
  • Cook your ribs for 3-4 minutes before checking their interior temperature. Air fryers may easily burn food, so cook in short bursts to avoid drying out your ribs.

Reheat ribs in a steamer

Reheating your ribs in the steamer is a terrific technique to keep the meat juicy while also producing a little basting juice.

  • In a big saucepan on the stove, heat a quarter cup of apple juice until it begins to boil. When reheating beef ribs, replace the apple juice with beer or a thin beef broth.
  • Place the ribs in the steamer basket, cover with the lid, and set over a saucepan of boiling water.
  • Steam the ribs for around 30 minutes. Try not to remove the cover while they are steaming. This allows the steam to escape, lowering the temperature in the pan. The more you remove the cover, the longer the ribs will take to cook.
  • Check the temperature of your ribs after 30 minutes. Turn them out onto a platter when they reach 140°F. If not, continue to steam until they reach temperature, adding a little additional liquid to the saucepan if required.
  • Season the liquid that has accumulated at the bottom of the saucepan, give it a good swirl, and then use it to completely baste your newly warmed ribs.

Should you reheat ribs in the Microwave?

Reheating ribs in the microwave is a common day-after technique since it is fast and convenient, but it will not provide the optimum results. Microwaves have a bad reputation for drying out food and not heating it evenly.

If you’re in a hurry and nuking your ribs is all you’ve had time for, there are a few measures you can take to get the greatest results from your microwave.

Two wet paper towels

Moisture is essential for reheating ribs without them drying out and becoming stringy. One simple method is to soak two paper towels in water, ring them out, and then lay one beneath and one over the jar containing your ribs.

The microwave rapidly converts the water in the paper towels into steam, keeping your ribs moist, while the paper towels prevent fat and BBQ sauce from spewing all over the interior of your oven.

  • Separate your ribs and place them in a jar with no cover.
  • Add the two moist paper towels, one on top and one on the bottom.
  • Microwave for two to three minutes on medium power, then check the internal temperature of the ribs.
  • Serve your ribs when they reach 140°F. If not, heat them in 30-second increments until they achieve temperature.

How to store cooked ribs

The most essential thing to remember while preserving leftover ribs is to get them as cold as possible. If you want to prepare them ahead of time, the Wozniak Method is the way to go.

Mike Wozniak is the pitmaster of Quau, which was named the Kansas City Barbeque Society Team of the Year in 2010.

The Wozniak Method

After your ribs have done cooking, cut them into single-serving chunks, cover them in foil securely, and pinch off the ends. You’re attempting to create the tightest seal possible here.

  1. Wrap your foil-wrapped ribs in a plastic bag that is waterproof.
  2. Place the entire package in an ice-filled cooler and cover with ice.
  3. Once the temperature has dropped below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, it is okay to place it in the fridge without fear of it raising the fridge temperature enough to destroy the rest of your food.

How to store ribs in the refrigerator 

You may keep leftover ribs in the fridge for 3 to 4 days if the temperature is below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. To keep your ribs in good shape, store them in an airtight container or vacuum bag to prevent moisture loss.

If you have it on hand, add the sauce you cooked the ribs in or the drippings from the cooking to the container before refrigerating to fully seal in the moisture.

How to store ribs in the freezer

Your ribs may be kept in the freezer for 6 to 12 months, but they must be properly sealed. The most efficient method is to use vacuum bags, which have the extra benefit of being able put directly into the sous vide, but a tight seal using plastic wrap, foil, or a zip lock bag will also work wonderfully.

Reheated ribs done right!

Reheating your ribs does not imply eating bland food. If done correctly, they may be as flavorful and tender as the day they were prepared.

Just remember to cool them fast, keep them moist, and employ one of the above-mentioned cooking techniques, and you’ll be in hog heaven all over again.

Do you have a recipe for ribs that taste as wonderful the second day? Is there a reheating technique that we didn’t include on our list that you believe is the best?

We’d appreciate it if you could let us know in the comments below and maybe share it with other meat eaters using the sharing icons.


How do you warm up ribs without drying them out?

Warming up in the oven

The most effective technique for warming leftover ribs is by far reheating in a low, slow oven. According to Southern Living, oven warming is the greatest way to restore delicate, juicy ribs without risking drying them out.

How long does it take to reheat ribs at 250?

Reheating ribs in the oven at 250 degrees Fahrenheit takes around 30-35 minutes. Reheating ribs in the oven at 300 degrees Fahrenheit takes around 45-50 minutes. Reheating ribs in a slow cooker takes around 4-6 hours. Reheating ribs on the grill takes around 10-15 minutes.

How do you reheat refrigerated ribs?

Preheat your oven to 250°F, cover the ribs in aluminum foil or lay them in a roasting pan, and reheat until done. In the oven, you can even get your barbecue sauce to caramelize a little bit!

Do you reheat ribs covered or uncovered?

Wrap a piece of aluminum foil over the ribs to form a seal so that no smoke or valuable fluids escape during the warming process. If you cover your ribs before cooking, they will reheat to a more balanced and delectable flavor.

What is the best way to reheat ribs in the oven?

Wrap the rib rack with aluminum foil. Preheat the oven to 350°F for 15 minutes. Remove the ribs from the oven and check for 165F. If not finished, replace and check every 5 minutes.

How do you make dry ribs moist again?

Coat the ribs in a 50/50 combination of your favorite BBQ sauce and apple cider vinegar. Wrap the ribs in foil and place them in a low oven (300°F) for approximately an hour.Dry ribs may be saved with moist, mild heat and a wet vinegary sauce. Here’s what you should do: Make a 50

How long to reheat ribs in oven at 225?

Also, avoid broiling. Reheat baby back ribs at a reduced temperature. They are more susceptible to heat and may dry out more quicker since they are cut thinner. Reheat them for 45 minutes at 225 degrees Fahrenheit.

How long to reheat ribs in oven at 325?

The USDA suggests an oven temperature of 250°F to 325°F. Wrap the ribs with foil. This will ensure that the ribs heat up fully and evenly. Bake the ribs for 20-30 minutes, or until they reach 145°F.

Is 250 too hot for ribs?

Most pitmasters believe that the best smoking temperature for ribs is 250°F. Cooking at lower temperatures takes longer and might result in tough, chewy meat. At the same time, excessive heat might cause your ribs to dry out fast. Aim for temperatures between 225°F and 275°F, with 250°F being the sweet spot.

How do you keep ribs moist in the oven?

Bake until soft, approximately 3 hours, covered firmly with foil. Editor’s Note: A tightly covered pan coated with aluminum foil will trap heat, steam, and moisture around the ribs, keeping them moist and juicy while they cook.


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