Ribbs is the favorite snack (or the main dish) of millions of people, especially those who live in the western world. There are dozens of recipes on how to cook them and make them tasty. Or you can always buy already made ribs at a supermarket or restaurant.
And it’s a common situation that you bought more than you can eat. Or maybe you had a party and there are some leftovers. No problem, just leave them in the fridge. But wait. Sometimes when you reheating ribs they tend to lose their original taste. So how can you reheat them in a way that would make them keep their flavor? There are some ways to do that.
1. Store them right
The key moment in saving the ribs flavor is the right storing. There are two ways of storing the ribs – short-term and long term. In the first case, you need to wait until the ribs cool off and then put them into the refrigerator. They keep the temperature under 40 degrees Fahrenheit, and that is a good environment to keep the germs at bay.
An important tip here is that you don’t need for ribs to cool down to room temperature. It’s enough to wait until they are simply not so hot as they used to be.
The longer they are left in the room, the higher the chance of the bacteria spreading.
Next, what you want to do is take the rib racks and put them in some kind of container. This container can be made of metal or plastic, or you could even use a plastic bag.
You should go for an airtight container in order not to let the moisture escape. The ideal choice is the vacuum-tight bag. You can make it at home with a vacuum sealer. Put the ribs there and such out the air.
And don’t worry if there is some sauce left on the ribs. In the container, it will play the role of a marinade and will help to persevere the taste. The short-term storage means no longer than 4 days.
In case of a long term storing, you can put the ribs into a freezer. However, this time it is not recommended to put them into a plastic container or a bag.
If you decide to do it be prepared for special thawing because plastic box freezing tends to let the extra moisture in and it will turn into ice flakes in no time. The vacuum bags are a perfect choice here as well. They will contribute to the saving of the original taste.
2. Reheating in a microwave and oven
Actually, reheating ribs in the microwave is not recommended, but if you have no other option, you can go for that. The situation gets much better in case you have a microwave that has a mode of vaporizing heating. The ordinary reheating in the microwave will dry out the moisture out of ribs and they will lose their taste.
But with the vaporizing mode, you can avoid that. One more thing that you can do before reheating ribs in your microwave is to put one piece in there and see how effective the process is. If you find out, that a rib hasn’t changed its taste that much, then you can surely go for that.
The best way to reheat the ribs and make them keep their taste is to reheat them in the oven. By the way, there are different rules for different kinds of flesh.
For example, for beef ribs (beef is known for its low fat containing comparing to pork), you will need to heat up your oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit, use wrapping aluminum foil and wrap the beef ribs tightly with a double layer, place the ribs inside and spill a ¼ cup of liquid as evenly as you can on the foil.
Once you have it prepared, put the foil with the liquid and ribs inside the oven and wait for the inner temperature to reach 165 degrees, using a meat thermometer. After the meat is reheated it is better to wait another 10 minutes so the ribs taste better.
The spare pork ribs are much fattier and larger. They are harder to cook but most of the people prefer specifically this kind of ribs. However, you will never have to apply an extra layer of moisture like water or any type of liquid, because spare pork ribs do not dry as easy as the other types.
In order to reheat them right, you will need to heat up the oven to the 250 degrees max, wrap the ribs in aluminum foil, add some extra sauce (if you want a stronger flavor), and put them into the oven. Measure the temperature with a thermometer, and wait for the insides to reach 170-175 degrees Fahrenheit. Then you can take the ribs out.
When you are going to reheat baby pork ribs, there is also another way to do that. On the contrary, to spare pork ribs, this type has a lower percentage of fat, which means they tend to dry out much faster. That’s why it is better to store and reheat them with a bigger amount of sauce.
The ideal tool you could use for reheating baby back ribs would be a broiling pan. First, you will need to put the ribs on it with the bones sticking up. Don’t forget to apply more sauce on them. Then, set the sauced baby back ribs in a position 4 inches below the broiling element.
Then warm up the ribs under the broiler for about 4 minutes. If you see the sauce is boiling then it’s time to take the ribs out. Then take the broiling pan off from the heat and turn the ribs around. Cover them with some aluminum foil and return them for another 4 minutes.
After you uncover the ribs let them cool for about 5 minutes. A small tip: if you got some free time and you want the ribs truly taste the way they did the first time, then take them out several times during the heating process applying some amount of source of them each time.
3. Reheating ribs using Sous Vide
Not everyone can use this method, but it is the best one to preserve the original taste of ribs and heat them up fast. Here you will need a large bath, or in our case a large pot, to hold all the water. A special Sous Vide tool will be an advantage. Just because the boiling water cannot go higher at a certain temperature, it is guaranteed that the ribs won’t get burned.
First, you need to put the ribs into completely sealed plastic bags. Remember that those bags should sustain high temperatures. Then take a large pot with water, heat it up on the stove until it boils. Then put the ribs in bags inside the boiling water. Here you can also apply some sauce onto the ribs before you put them into the water.
You can keep the bags in the water as long as you like. By the way, this is probably the biggest drawback of this method. You will have to keep the ribs in the water not less than an hour to heat them up properly. The best timing is 3 hours. Then take out ribs an enjoy their original taste.
Of course, this method won’t let you add an extra crunchy layer to ribs as it is the case with other methods. But, summarizing all the points, the main thing in reheating the ribs is not to fry them one more time or smoke them out, but to try to save their juiciness, which can be achieved only if you are reheating them using vapor.