Powered by HuraTips.Com

Don't Chew on Tough Ribs: How to Remove the Rib Membrane

Are you a fan of barbecue ribs? Do you wonder if it's really necessary to remove the rib membrane before cooking? While some people might say that it doesn't matter, many barbecue enthusiasts believe that removing the membrane can make a significant difference in the tenderness and flavor of the meat.

In this blog post, we'll show you how removing the membrane can transform your ribs from good to great, and give you all the tips and tricks you need to get the job done. Whether you're a seasoned pit master or just starting out, this is one step you won't want to skip.

Understanding the Rib Membrane: What It Is and Why It Matters

When it comes to cooking BBQ ribs that are truly finger-licking good, every little detail counts. That includes a thin layer of tissue that runs along the underside of the ribs, called the rib membrane. While it may seem like a small detail, this membrane can actually have an impact on the flavor and texture of your ribs.

If you've ever had ribs that were tough and chewy, or that just didn't seem as flavorful as they could be, the rib membrane may be to blame. This thin layer of connective tissue can prevent seasoning and smoke from fully penetrating the meat, leaving you with lackluster results.

Silver-Skin: The Culinary Culprit of Tough Meat

Silver skin, also known as fascia, is a thin layer of connective tissue that covers muscle. It's a whitish, silvery membrane that is often found on cuts of meat such as beef tenderloin or pork loin. Silver skin can be tough and chewy, and it doesn't break down during cooking, which can make the meat difficult to chew.

Pork vs Beef Rib Membrane: How They Differ and What to Expect

The rib membrane can be found on both pork and beef ribs. However, the rib membrane on pork ribs is typically thinner and more delicate than that on beef ribs. This means that it's easier to remove the membrane from pork ribs than beef ribs.

Identifying the Silver Skin

To determine if your ribs have a silver skin on them, turn them over so that the bone side is facing up. Look for a thin, white membrane covering the bones. If you can't see the membrane, try using a small knife or your fingers to gently pry up the edge of the membrane.

The Consequences of Skipping Membrane Removal

If you don't remove the rib membrane before cooking, it can make the ribs tough and chewy. The membrane doesn't break down during cooking, so it can be difficult to chew and can ruin the texture of the meat. Additionally, leaving the membrane on can prevent rubs and marinades from penetrating the meat, which can affect the flavor.

To Remove or Not to Remove After Cooking

It is possible to remove the rib membrane after the ribs are cooked, but it's much easier to do it before cooking. If you try to remove the membrane after the ribs are cooked, it may be more difficult to get a clean separation, and you may end up pulling off some of the meat along with the membrane.

To remove the rib membrane, start at one end of the rack and use a small knife or your fingers to pry up the edge of the membrane. Once you've gotten a good grip on the membrane, use a paper towel to grip the membrane and pull it off the ribs. If the membrane tears, use the knife or your fingers to continue prying up the membrane until you can get a grip on it again.

In conclusion, while some may argue that removing the rib membrane doesn't matter, many believe that it can make a significant difference in the tenderness and flavor of the meat. By following the tips outlined in this post, you can easily remove the membrane and enjoy the full flavor and tenderness of your barbecue ribs. So, the next time you prepare ribs, consider removing the rib membrane before cooking!


The Smart Wireless Meat Thermometer for Every Cook

MeatStick 4

Next Gen Quad Sensors


MeatStick Chef

The Smallest MeatStick



Classic Duo Sensors

$69.99 - $199.99

What's the difference?

Compare MeatStick 4, MeatStick Chef and Classic MeatStick

*WiFi Connection requires WiFi Bridge

1 Response

arthur coble
arthur coble

January 25, 2024

when the ribs are frozen hard, the skin or membrane will not skin off . do you just go ahead and cook them?

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.