Beef Essentials: Smoky Braised Short Ribs

Andy Anderson !


I love beef short ribs, oh heck, I love just about any kind of ribs. This recipe utilizes your smoker, and then finishes the ribs off in an amazing braze in the oven.

Come to think about it, this smoking/brazing technique would probably work with a bunch of different beef and pork recipes.

And, if you do not want to use a smoker, I will give you a hack to go from stovetop-to-oven. It will taste slightly different, but it will still be yummy.

So, you ready… Let’s get into the kitchen.


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10 Min
5 Hr




  • 4 lb
    bone-in beef short ribs, about 4 or 5
  • ·
    non-flavored oil, for rubbing

  • 1 Tbsp
    sweet butter, unsalted
  • 2 oz
    yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 oz
    celery, chopped
  • 1 oz
    carrots, chopped
  • 2 clove
    garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp
    coconut sugar
  • 2 tsp
    dried thyme
  • 1 Tbsp
    dried parsley flakes
  • 2 large
    bay leaves
  • 14 oz
    diced tomatoes, 1 can, with juice
  • 1 c
    beef stock, not broth
  • 1 c
    beer, light variety
  • 1 Tbsp
    dijon mustard, i prefer grey poupon
  • ·
    salt, kosher variety, to taste
  • ·
    black pepper, freshly ground, to taste

  • 1/2 c
    coconut sugar, light or dark variety
  • 1 Tbsp
    dehydrated onions, crushed to a powder
  • 1 Tbsp
    smoked paprika
  • 1 Tbsp
    sweet paprika
  • 2 tsp
    black or white pepper, freshly ground
  • 1 tsp
    salt, kosher variety, fine grind
  • 1 tsp
    mustard powder, i prefer colemans’
  • 1 tsp
    garlic powder
  • 1 tsp
    chili powder

How to Make Beef Essentials: Smoky Braised Short Ribs


  2. The Dry Rub
    I posted this recipe for dry rub about a week ago and liked it so much, I decided to use it in this recipe. But I though why make you go out and pinch another recipe, so I included the ingredients in this one.
  3. The Chopped Onions, Carrots, Celery
    Mirepoix is the French culinary term for a combination of diced carrots, onions and celery, typically sautéed in sweet butter and used as an aromatic base to flavor sauces, soups and stews.

    The ratio is two parts onions, to 1 part each celery and carrots (2:1:1).

    If you do not want to chop the veggies, you can always use the frozen variety. As a matter of fact, they sell a mirepoix mix of frozen onions, celery, and carrots.
    In the proper proportions, of course.

    And, if you are interested Cajun and Creole cooking have their own form of mirepoix, and it is called The Holy Trinity. It consists of equal amounts of onions, bell peppers and celery. The preparation of Cajun/Creole dishes such as crawfish étouffée, gumbo, and jambalaya all start from this base.
  4. Do not have beer, or do not wish to use it, no worries, just substitute an equal amount of beef stock. It will, of course, change the flavor of the braising liquid, but it will still be mighty tasty.

    And, if you perchance are using beer, I would suggest drinking one or two of them; just to make sure they are still good.
  5. If you fancy a good coleslaw, I served it with this recipe, here you go:
    Andy’s Amazing Coleslaw
  6. Short Ribs Without the Smoker
    I think that using a smoker for the first part of this recipe really kicks this recipe off; however, I have tried it with-or-without a smoker and like it both ways.

    So, if you are not using a smoker, you will still need the Rub, and The Braising Liquid. Then skip over the section, THE RIBS (SMOKER). However, before you make the braising liquid, dust the ribs with the rub, and let rest for about 30 minutes.

    Put some oil in the pot you are going to braise in, add a bit of oil, turn up the heat to medium, and brown the short ribs, about 1 – 2 minutes per side. But be careful, because if you have it turned up too high you will burn the rub…

    Remove the ribs, and reserve. Then, make the braising liquid, and follow the rest of the recipe.

    Note: If you want to get a bit funky, add a drop or two of Liquid Smoke to the braise liquid. But only a drop or two… that stuff is powerful.

    Note: You might need to leave it in the oven a bit longer, but with short ribs probably not. Just check for tenderness before serving.
  7. Gather your ingredients (mise en place).
  8. THE RUB
  9. Mix all the rub ingredients together, and reserve.
  10. You are making about twice the amount needed to do this recipe. Store the remainder in a small glass jar with a tight-fitting lid, in a cool dry space, and it should last 6-months or longer.
  12. Rub a bit of grapeseed oil, or another non-flavored variety, on the ribs, and then generously sprinkle with the rub mix.
  13. Let them rest while you set the smoker to 250f (120c).
  14. Place them in the preheated smoker and add a generous amount of woodchips (I am using applewood with a bit of oak).
  15. After the first hour, add more woodchips and let them smoke an additional hour, for a total of 2 hours.
  16. Remove them from the smoker… Mmm mmm mmm
  17. We are not trying to cook the ribs in the smoker; just infuse them with some yummy smoke flavor
  19. While the ribs are smoking, add the butter to an ovenproof soup pot or Dutch oven, over medium heat.
  20. After it melts, add the onions, carrots, celery, and garlic, then stir for 2 – 3 minutes.
  21. Add the coconut sugar, thyme, parsley, and bay leaves.
  22. Stir for an additional 2 – 3 minutes, until the veggies are softened, but not browned or, heaven forbid, burned.
  23. Add the remaining ingredients (except the salt and pepper), then stir to combine.
  24. Bring up to a simmer, and simmer and stir for 3 – 4 minutes.
  25. While the braising liquid is simmering, add a bit of salt and pepper, to taste.
  26. Place a rack in the bottom position and preheat the oven to 330f (165c).
  27. Add the smoked short ribs to the braising liquid.
  28. They should be just below the surface of the liquid. You can always add a bit more stock, beer or even water, if needed.
  29. Place covered in the preheated oven.
  30. After the first hour, offset the pot’s cover to allow for a bit of evaporation.

    After the second hour, check to see if the liquid is reducing, and adjust the lid accordingly.

    After the third hour remove the pot from the oven, and let stand, uncovered for 10 – 12 minutes.
  31. The liquid in the sauce should reduce by about 30%, that will thicken the sauce and concentrate the flavors.
  33. Spoon some of the sauce over the ribs, and serve with your favorite sides, like some nice garlic smashed taters. In my case I went with my homemade coleslaw… not sure why, but everyone liked it. Enjoy.
  34. Keep the faith, and keep cooking.

Printable Recipe Card

About Beef Essentials: Smoky Braised Short Ribs

Course/Dish: Beef
Main Ingredient: Beef
Regional Style: Southern

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