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posted May 28, 2020

Apple Jalapeno Smoked Ribs

These Apple Jalapeno Smoked ribs are absolutely delicious, melt in your mouth tender, with just a kiss of heat. Sweet and Spicy come together in a magical union.

Sliced Apple Jalapeno Ribs stacked on a wood cutting board with fresh jalapenos in the background.

Apple Jalapeno Smoked Ribs

We looooooove us some ribs. Something about the messy hands, messy face, and full acknowledgement that the flavor of what you are eating supersedes how crazy you look eating it. Have some wet napkins handy and dig in. I know you’re thinking that these ribs will burn your tongue, but really they’re pretty tame. Even the non-spice lovers would love these if you could talk them into getting past the huge slices of jalapeno lingering on each bite. If you can’t talk them into it… well darn. I guess that means more ribs for you.

Overhead view of rack of smoked ribs topped with jalapeno slices on a wood cutting board.

Smoked Ribs Seasoning

One of the most important steps in a good smoked rib is to start with a great rub. You can either make my Sweet Rub recipe from scratch at home, or buy yourself a bottle from my online shop, Patio Provisions. The Sweet Rub adds the perfect amount of sweetness to marry the heat on these ribs.

Another secret to the amazing flavor in these ribs ribs is the flavor infused braising liquid that they are wrapped in during the second step of the cooking process. After the ribs take on as much smoke as they can handle, they get a bath in a medley of apple juice and jalapenos that make the ribs super tender and dripping with unbelievable sweet and spicy flavor. Finally these beauties get a slather of Apple Jalapeno BBQ Sauce, (which you can make from scratch or buy from my store) and a little more time on the grill to set.

Sliced smoked ribs arranged into a pile on a wood cutting board.

How to Smoke Apple Jalapeno Ribs

I smoked these Apple Jalapeno Ribs on my pellet grill, so I can easily switch between the 180 degrees F for the first 3 hours and 225 degrees F for the remainder of the cook. If you have a traditional offset smoker, try and shoot for and even 225 degrees F for the whole cook. You might find that the ribs take 4-5 hours instead of 6, so just keep an eye on your ribs during the foiling phase. If you have an electric smoker, you can just set the ribs to smoke for the first 3 hours, then transfer to your oven during the foiled phase if you’d like to avoid refilling your pan with wood chips. These are not crock pot ribs, oven ribs, or boiled ribs, these are smoked ribs!

Tips for Perfect Smoked Ribs

  • Keep an eye on your rib bones. When the meat has pulled back about 1/2 inch from the bones, your ribs are likely ready.
  • Use the bend test. Another method for testing rib doneness is lifting one end of your ribs with tongs. If the top of the meat just starts to shred when you bend them, they are done!
  • Try an instant read thermometer! If other visual cues aren’t cutting it for you, use technology to help you along. It can be difficult to get a perfect read on ribs without hitting bones, but shoot for the meat in between 2 bones and look for about 200 degrees F for melt in your mouth ribs. The probe should slide into the meat very smoothly. 

Sliced apple jalapeno ribs fanned out across a wood cutting board.

Apple Jalapeno Ribs Recipe

Follow the recipe, and I’ll teach you the simple steps to making your own Apple Jalapeno Ribs at home. If you’re looking for the ultimate way to help you make better BBQ, feed the people you love, and become a backyard BBQ hero, join my members-only group The Grill Squad for full and exclusive access to all my meat, rubs, sauces, and meat buying master classes, podcasts, and so much more.

Making good food should be easy, and Hey Grill Hey is here to help! Over at our online store, Patio Provisions, we have all of the BBQ sauces, rubs, and more that you’ll need for these ribs. Check it out today!

Pile of sliced Apple Jalapeno Ribs on a wood board.

Apple Jalapeno Smoked Ribs

Beautifully tender fall off the bone ribs with a sweet and spicy Apple Jalapeno BBQ Sauce.
4.98 from 36 votes
Prep Time : 10 mins
Cook Time : 6 hrs
Total Time : 6 hrs 10 mins
Servings : 6 people
Calories : 611kcal




  • Begin by removing the thin membrane on the back of the ribs. Use a butter knife to lift a small corner of the membrane away from the bones, grip firmly with a paper towel, and pull slowly away from the rack.
  • Slather both sides of the ribs with the yellow mustard and season liberally with the Sweet Rub.
  • Prepare your smoker for indirect smoking at 225 degrees F. I use apple wood for this recipe. Place the seasoned ribs on the smoker and close the lid. Leave them to smoke for 3 hours.
  • Tear off a large piece of aluminum foil and place it on a large working surface. Transfer the ribs to the foil bone side up so the bones don't tear through the foil. Sprinkle with the brown sugar, top with the butter cut into small pads, fold up the edges of the foil to create a slight bowl, and then pour the apple juice over the ribs. Once the liquid has settled, top with the sliced jalapenos. Tightly crimp the foil together to create an airtight seal. Repeat with the second rack.
  • Return to the grill and keep your cooking temperature to as close to 225 degrees as you can get it. Let the ribs braise for 2 hours in the foil.
  • Carefully remove the ribs from the grill and place on a large working surface. Open the foil package (be careful of hot steam) and use tongs to remove the ribs and place them back on the grill, bone side down. Remove the cooked jalapenos from the braising liquid and set aside. Discard the foil and excess cooking liquid.
  • Brush the ribs with the Apple Jalapeno BBQ Sauce and arrange the jalapeno slices you set aside on top of the ribs. Close the lid of your grill and cook at 225 degrees for an additional 30 minutes to 1 hour until the ribs are done to your desired tenderness and the sauce is sticky and set.
  • Rest the ribs for 10-15 minutes before slicing into individual ribs. Serve with additional sauce on the side.


Calories: 611kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 38g | Fat: 40g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Cholesterol: 150mg | Sodium: 841mg | Potassium: 671mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 691IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 181mg | Iron: 5mg
Ready to Become a Backyard BBQ Hero?Join The Grill Squad today!

Rack of smoked ribs topped with sliced jalapenos.Slab of mahogany colored sliced smoked ribs on a wood cutting board. One rib has been tilted to show the meat.Overhead view of a rack of smoked ribs topped with jalapenos. Ribs are on a wood cutting board with an apple and jalapenos on each side.**This recipe was originally published on Feb 6, 2016. It has since been updated with more information, a new video, and new photos. The recipe remains the same.**

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