Smoked Beef Short Ribs with a Sweet and Tangy Red Wine Barbecue Sauce

Prep Time 5 hours
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 7 hours
Author A Bachelor & His Grill


  • 4 pounds beef short ribs trimmed
  • Red Wine Barbecue Sauce recipe above
  • Olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 3 tablespoons finely ground coffee beans
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon granulated garlic powder
  • 2 pinches sugar
  • Kosher salt and fresh ground peppercorn to taste
  • Lager beer for spritzing
  • Red Wine Barbecue Sauce recipe above
  • Oak wood chunks


  • Prepare barbecue sauce and set aside. Meanwhile, make the rub by pulsing together the olive oil and all the other spices in a food processor. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then set aside.
  • Trim ribs of fat atop the flesh, but leave silver skin on bottom side of the bone. Rinse ribs with cold water, then pat entirely dry with paper towel. Brush with oil and massage a liberal degree of rub across all portions of the meat. Wrap ribs tightly with plastic and marinate in the refrigerator for 4 hours, up to overnight.
  • Remove ribs from refrigeration, unwrap and rest on counter at room temperature for 1 hour prior to grilling. Meanwhile, preheat grill to 225-250°F, using the 2-zone cooking method (see notes below) and toss a few chunks of oak wood directly upon the smoldering coals (or, if using gas, place wood chunks in a perforated tin foil packet placed in the back corner of the direct heat grill grates). When billowing smoke thins and turns blueish in hue, the grill is ready.
  • Lay ribs bone-side down over the cooler, indirect heat portion of the grill. Smoke the ribs with grill lid closed until the beef pulls back from the bone, intermittently spritzing with beer until internal temperatures reaches 195F. At this juncture transfer ribs to the hotter direct heat grill grates and begin slathering the ribs with barbecue sauce, caramelizing one layer upon another until the internal temperature reads 203F.
  • Remove the ribs from grill and tent with tin foil for 10 minutes. Brush one final time with sauce, then plate and serve.


Two-Zone Cooking Method: Elementary technique to create one hot searing zone (direct heat) and one cooler smoking zone (indirect heat). This grill arrangement is imperative to cultivating perfectly prepared beef short ribs.
Gas: Turn the right side of the grill to high & leave the left side off. If using a with an odd number of burners, turn the far right side of the grill to high, the middle to medium-low and leave the left side off.
Charcoal: Ignite the charcoal in a chimney starter. When coals are glowing red, dump coals into a pile on one side of the grill floor. Rake a few coals the opposite side of the grill floor, creating one high-stacked hot zone and one cooler zone. For every hour of cooking, add a half-chimney of coals to the grill floor.