Home Made Pastrami Ribs

  • Recipe Type

    Red Meat

  • Skill Level


  • Grill Time

    8 hours

  • Method

    Indirect Smoking

  • Servings

    Serves 4-6

In the world of grilling and smoking, there are few things as rewarding as mastering the art of homemade pastrami ribs. This culinary adventure blends the rich, smoky flavors of traditional barbecue with the bold, peppery essence of pastrami, resulting in a mouthwatering masterpiece that is sure to impress even the pickiest of palates.

Before we dive into the tantalizing details of this recipe, it's important to note that crafting homemade pastrami ribs is an endeavor suited for those with a moderate level of skill and a willingness to invest both time and attention to detail. With a grill time of approximately 8 hours and a method that involves indirect smoking, this recipe is not for the faint of heart. But for those brave enough to embark on this culinary journey, the rewards are beyond measure.

Yes, there are many steps to this recipe, and it takes almost a week in full but trust me, the reward is definitely worth the effort.  Once you bite into these insanely tasty ribs, you will be both glad and proud of what you did.  Do not let all of the steps scare you.  If you follow this process to a tee, you will have pastrami ribs that will compete with any deli in NYC.  BTW, this rub recipe is based off of the rub that they use in the world-famous Katz’s Deli in NYC.  This place is considered the benchmark to which all other pastrami is compared.  It was even featured on the movie When Harry Met Sally.  Do you remember the whole Meg Ryan /Billy Crystal scene where she was ahem…”screaming” at the table?  Yeah, it’s that place. 

We may have done these on the Big Green Egg, but you can do them on whatever grill/smoker you have.  Just follow the process and cook accordingly.  In the video we mention being able to use pink sea salt in place of the curing salt.  This will work well flavor wise, but it will not give you the bright pink color inside that you are expecting.  It created what is classically known as grey corned beef.  The taste is the same, but the color is not.

Crafting homemade pastrami ribs is a labor of love, but the end result is a hearty, beefy experience that will leave your taste buds singing. So gather your ingredients, fire up the grill, and embark on a journey to flavor town with this delicious dish. Enjoy the ribs, always #GetOutAndGrill and we look forward to seeing you the next time on The FOGO Life.  Captain Ron……out!


  1. Using your Boning/Filet knife, carefully remove all of the fat cap and silver skin from the tops and sides of the ribs.
  2. Bring ½ gallon of water to a light boil. Add all of the brine ingredients and stir until all salts etc. have dissolved.  Remove it from the heat and transfer to a separate container.  Add the other ½ gallon of water and allow the brine to cool.
  3. Using your injection needle and working inside your BBQ Prep Tub, inject the rib rack all over with the brine. When you insert the needle, Slowly slide the needle out while maintaining pressure and injecting.  In the same hole, turn the needle in multiple directions and inject all around.  These two ways will ensure that you get full coverage with the brine.
  4. Place the ribs into a plastic bag or container and cover them with the brine. Place them in the Prep tub in the bag and place on a rack in the refrigerator for five days.  Each day, be sure to flip the ribs over to make sure that every square inch is getting brined.
  5. On day 5, remove the ribs from the fridge and the bag. Wipe all brine and any seeds or other solids that have stuck to the meat. Save the brine for use later in the recipe.   Assemble your rub by combining all of the ingredients and mixing them well.  Coat the entire rack of ribs with the rub, making sure to cover every square inch with rub.  Set aside on the counter while you prepare the grill.  Once some liquid has seeped out and turned the rub into a bit of a paste, sprinkle the top with the Tina Cannon European Blend seasoning.
  6. Fill your grill with FOGO Eucalyptus Charcoal and prepare it for indirect grilling at 250-275°. Use a Blazaball, FOGO Fire Starters and Grill Torch to light the coals and add 2-3 Smoke Your Bourbon smoking chunks to the fire.  Once the white smoke has cleared, insert the Meater Thermometer in the center of the meat and set it for 165°.  Place the rack of ribs in the center of the grate and close the dome.  Leave it closed until it is time to wrap.
  7. Once they have reached 165° internal temperature, take a peek. If the bark is dark enough to where you are happy with it, remove the ribs to the ½ moon stainless pan and rack. Fill the bottom with brine so it is just below the rack.  Wrap the entire pan in aluminum foil and place it back on the grill and cook until the internal is 203° or until a probe slides in with no pressure.  That is the true test of when they are done.
  8. Once they have reached the tenderness that we are looking for, remove them to a foil pan or simply wrap them loosely in foil. Place them in a cooler or Cambro to rest for at least one hour.  If using a cooler, try to use one that is size appropriate.  A 110 Yeti is too big for a single rack of ribs!
  9. After resting for at least one hour, remove them, unwrap them, use a slicer knife to slice them, admire how juicy they are, devour them These are a true St Patrick’s Day treat!


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