Memphis style wagyu ribs

At our favourite butcher, we found beautiful Wagyu beef ribs. As far as we were concerned, these ribs had an excellent ratio of meat to fat. Often Wagyu is just too fatty to enjoy as a regular meal. But with these ribs, we were able to make a great snack.

This is how good bbq meat should look. Dark red and full of thin white lines. This intramuscular fat melts during a low and slow preparation and ensures that the meat becomes wonderfully tender and juicy. Because it is not a hard kind of fat, we can also grill these beef ribs instead of cooking them low and slow. Guess what we’re going to do?

Before we provide the ribs with a thick layer of dry rub, we remove the membrane. That is very easy. You insert a dull knife between the bone and the membrane, then push the blade up. Then you wriggle your finger under it, and you pull the membrane right off. Remove smaller pieces that remain with a bit of paper towel.

As mentioned, we are going to prepare these beef ribs hot and fast. We have placed the charcoal on 1 side using the divider that you put in the charcoal basket. We put the ribs on the grates that we placed on the other side.

Because the Classic III has a higher kettle, the distance between the charcoal and the grates is large enough to grill these ribs Memphis style. Memphis style means that we grill the ribs at a low temperature. So not indirectly as you usually do with a low and slow preparation.

After an hour or two, check whether the dry rub is firmly attached to the meat. Then it’s time to mop. This mop sauce is nothing more than vinegar, water and a bit of the rub you sprinkled over the meat. With the sauce, you build up extra layers of flavour. The smoke will be picked up better on a wet surface, so you will get a smoky taste faster.

At some point, you will notice that the meat has pulled back from the ribs. The ribs are ready from that moment on, and you decide how tender you want the ribs to be.

You can check the tenderness by sticking your thermometer into the meat. Not to measure the temperature but to check how tender the beef is. If the probe goes in without resistance, you know how tender the meat is. We like to have our ribs with a bit of bite, so we don’t overcook them. In total, they spent about 4 hours on the grill.

This is the result of a 4 hour hot and fast preparation. These wagyu ribs are amazingly tender and juicy, and the smoke ring can be clearly seen because of the mop sauce.

These are Memphis style Wagyu spare ribs. If you are going to make them, let us know in the comments below. Or better! Take a photo and post it on Instagram. Tag @bbq.heroes so we can see what you made.


  • Wagyu beef ribs

For the dry rub

  • 4 tbsp paprika powder
  • 4 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp granulated garlic
  • 2 tsp celery seed
  • 2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp granulated onion
  • 2 tsp thyme
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp mustard powder

For the mop sauce

  • 100 ml apple cider vinegar
  • 100ml water
  • 2 tbsp of the above dry rub


  1. Remove the membrane from the ribs side of the meat. Insert a blunt knife between a rib and the membrane and push the membrane loose until you get a finger underneath. Then pull the membrane off.
  2. Mix the ingredients for the rub and spread an even layer over all sides of the meat. Keep at least 2 tablespoons aside for the mop sauce.
  3. Prepare your grill with an indirect temperature of about 160°C (320F).
  4. Place a block of smoke wood on the charcoal when the temperature in the grill is stable. Place the ribs on the grates and close the lid.
  5. Now you can make the mop sauce by mixing the vinegar, water and the dry rub. Warm the sauce slightly to allow the sugar to dissolve. Then take it off the fire.
  6. After 2 hours, and when the dry rub has formed a nice crust on the meat, we start mopping. Do this every 20 minutes until the ribs are to your liking.
  7. Check the doneness of the ribs by poking a toothpick or your thermometer probe into the meat. If it goes in and out without too much resistance, the beef ribs are ready.
  8. Let them rest for 10 minutes before slicing them.

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