Royal Smoked Ribs

Howdy folks, and thanks for stopping by the website! I’ve smoked many a rack of baby back ribs in my life and I’m going to share how I do it (the right way!). I’ve tried every method that anyone’s ever come up with, and found that this is the best way to get the most flavor combined with the moisture that you want in every bite.

How to Prepare Ribs for Smoking

Start by removing the white membrane along the back of the ribs. I use the back of a spoon to slice enough off to grab with a paper towel or textured cloth and pull that right off of the rack of ribs. If you’re defrosting frozen ribs, do this when you’re about halfway thawed. It’ll be a little easier then.

Tip: When you’re picking out your ribs at the butcher, buy a rack that doesn’t have any white bone showing. You’ll have more meat that way!

Dry the meat and mix up the marinade of Crown Royal Peach and Sprite. The whiskey will infuse the ribs with so much flavor, and the sprite will add a touch of lemon/lime citrus flavor.


Tip: Dry the meat with a towel before seasoning. The meat will absorb more flavor if you season or marinate while it’s dry. 

When the marinade is all over every inch of the rack of ribs, cover well with plastic wrap and let sit until the ribs come to room temperature.

Tip: Make sure the ribs are kept out of reach from the pups while coming to room temperature!

When you’re ready to smoke the ribs, remove the plastic wrap and season all over with Rib Rub or seasonings of your choice. If you’d like to use my Rib Rub recipe, well, you’re in luck, because I’ve had it bottled so everyone can have delicious ribs.

How to Hang Ribs Off of the Cooking Grill

Bring hardwood lump charcoal to a white hot coal and heat the smoker to 250. Add some extra chunks of wood; oak, apple, and cherry do well with pork. Check the temperature frequently so the ribs cook low and slow and don’t burn.

The stainless steel rib hanger that is used in this video is compatible with the Kent Rollins Roughneck Smoker from Hasty Bake! Check out the smoker and all of the accessories here.

Take your hook and hang the rack of ribs from it- you’ll want to place the hook underneath the 4th rib bone from the end. Then hang the rack of ribs from the grill grate or from an elevated grill attachment, if you have one. I like to use an elevated one because if the rack of ribs is a large one the bottom will be just a bit too close to the hot coals.

Photograph shows Cowboy Kent Rollins demonstrating how to put a metal hook through a rack of ribs by inserting it no lower than the 4th bone.

Tip: Oak, apple, and cherry wood smoke tastes great on pork. 

Smoke at 250 for about two and a half hours before we remove them from the hook and wrap them up. When you pull the ribs off the hook, spritz with the Crown Royal Peach and Sprite marinade and wrap up in foil or pink paper and lay back on the smoker. If you use foil, they’ll be ready a little sooner than the pink paper, but they’ll be a little more moist because they create a steaming effect. Either way works and tastes delicious.

Tip: Ribs are tender when you can bend the rack of ribs and the meat gives easily. 

That’s it, folks! Eat them any way you like! Thank you for watching our videos! Please subscribe to our YouTube Channel and follow us on Facebook. Join our e-mail newsletter to always have the latest recipes and event updates!

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Royal Smoked Baby Back Ribs - Cowboy Kent Rollins

Prep Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Total Time 6 hours 25 minutes
Servings 8


  • 2 racks baby back ribs
  • cup Crown Royal Peach Whiskey divided
  • 1 12 ounce can Sprite soda divided
  • ½ to ¾ cup Kent’s Rib Rub or your favorite rib seasoning mix


  • Remove the ribs from the packaging and place on a baking pan. With a spoon or knife, peel off the membrane from the bone side of the ribs and discard. Pat the ribs dry with a paper towel.
  • In a small bowl, combine ⅓ cup whiskey and 6 ounces soda. Pour half the contents over the meaty side of the ribs and rub in. Turn the ribs over and pour the remaining mixtures over the ribs. Cover with plastic wrap and let set about 45 minutes, or until the ribs reach room temperature.
  • Preheat the smoker to 250 degrees F. While the coals are getting ready, place the ribs on a wire rack and season all sides generously with the Rib Rub and let set 30 minutes.
  • Hang or place the ribs on the smoker. Add some mesquite and cherry or apple wood chunks. Shut the lid and smoke for 2 hours.
  • Pull the ribs off the smoker and wrap with either pink paper or aluminum foil.
  • Place the ribs back on the smoker and continue to smoke for about 2 hours, or until when you bend the ribs slightly they begin to crack. You may need to add more wood to maintain 250 degrees F. while smoking. Note: If you are using paper, the cook time will be about 30 minutes longer.
  • Mix the remaining whiskey and Sprite in a spray bottle. Remove the paper or foil and place them back on the smoker and with the lid open. Cook the ribs and additional 10 minutes, spraying twice with the whiskey mixture.
  • Let the ribs set for about 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!