Types Of Pork Ribs

There are a variety of types of pork ribs that vary in size, flavor, and meatyness depending on what part of the pig they come from.

Back Ribs

Back ribs come from the blade and center section of the pork loin, which is known for the “finger meat” between the bones. Back ribs also are referred to as “baby” back ribs because they are smaller than spareribs. A rack typically weighs between 1½ and 1¾ pounds. Popular cooking methods for back ribs are BBQ, roasting, and slow-cooking.


Spareribs come from the belly of the hog and are known for their delicious, full flavor. These ribs are a bit less meaty than back ribs or country-style ribs. Spareribs are typically larger and heavier than back ribs.

St. Louis style ribs are spareribs with the sternum bone, cartilage and rib tips removed to create a rectangular-shaped rack. These often are the best type of ribs for recipes that require browning in a frying pan because the ribs are straight and flat.

Country-style Ribs

Country-style ribs are cut from the sirloin or rib end of the pork loin. The meatiest variety of ribs, country-style ribs are sold either as “slabs” or in individual servings. These pork ribs are perfect for those who want to use a knife and fork.

Popular cooking methods for country-style ribs include grilling and roasting. These ribs are great for marinades and sauces.

Cooking Ribs

Ribs are commonly prepared either “wet” or “dry.” Ribs rubbed with a mixture of herbs and spices are called dry ribs. Such rubs can be applied just before cooking. Ribs basted with sauces during the cooking process are called wet ribs. For best results, brush ribs generously during the last 30 minutes of cooking.

If you’re barbecuing your ribs, try using aromatic woods such as hickory, mesquite, apple, or cherry and add to the preheated coals to give the meat a distinctive flavor.

Cooking Tip

Serve ribs directly from the grill or, for extra tender ribs, remove them from heat and wrap them in heavy foil. Place foil-wrapped ribs in brown paper bags, close the bags and let the ribs rest for up to one hour.

How to Cook Ribs in the Oven

Savory ribs don’t have to come from the grill or smoker. Learn how to cook ribs in the oven. These Oven BBQ Back Ribs come out of the oven with mouthwatering saucy BBQ perfection.

Simple Ribs Recipe in the Oven

  1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees F
  2. Remove the membrane off or your pork back ribs
  3. Season both sides
  4. Prep your roasting pan and place ribs meat side up
  5. Bake for 2.5 hours
  6. Remove and baste both sides with BBQ Sauce
  7. Place ribs under broiler for an additional 5-7 minutes