Grill Like a Pro: Mastering the Art of Reheating Ribs

How to Reheat Ribs on the Grill: A Step-by-Step Guide


Reheating leftover ribs can often be a tricky task, as it requires careful precision to maintain their tenderness and smoky flavor. While there are various methods available, using a grill is an excellent way to reheat your ribs without compromising their taste or texture. In this guide, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of reheating ribs on the grill, ensuring that they turn out perfectly juicy and delicious.

Step 1: Preparing Your Grill

Before starting the reheating process, make sure your grill is clean and well-maintained. Remove any ash or debris from previous uses, and ensure that all vents are open for proper air circulation. Additionally, check if you have enough fuel (charcoal or propane) for uninterrupted heating.

Step 2: Setting Up Direct Heat Zones

To achieve optimal results while reheating your ribs on the grill, it’s crucial to set up direct heat zones. With charcoal grills, distribute heated coals evenly across one side of the grill bed while leaving the other side empty – this creates two distinct temperature zones. For gas grills with multiple burners, ignite only half of them while keeping others turned off.

Step 3: Preparing Ribs for Reheating

Take out your leftover refrigerated ribs and allow them to come close to room temperature by leaving them at counter level for approximately 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat your grill to medium-high heat (around 375°F – 400°F).

While waiting for both these preparations simultaneously allows even cooking throughout each rib section.

Once at room temperature:

A) Apply Sauce (Optional)

If desired, brush your ribs with a thin layer of your preferred barbecue sauce on both sides. This step adds extra moisture and enhances the flavor profile during reheating.

B) Wrap in Aluminum Foil

Individually wrap each rib section tightly in aluminum foil to prevent them from drying out. Ensure that there are no openings for steam to escape, as it plays a crucial role in maintaining their juiciness during reheating.

Step 4: Reheating Ribs on the Grill

Carefully place the wrapped rib sections directly onto the hot grill grates over indirect heat zone (the side without coals or unlit burners). Close the lid to trap heat and smoke inside while allowing constant airflow through vents.

Cooking time may vary depending upon the thickness of ribs:

A) Baby Back Ribs

Reheat baby back ribs for approximately 15-20 minutes, flipping once halfway through cooking time.

B) Spare Ribs/St. Louis Cut

For spare ribs or St. Louis cut, reheat them for approximately 20-25 minutes, flipping once midway.

Remember to check internal temperature using an instant-read thermometer – it should read around 165°F when done.

Step 5: Finishing Touches

Towards the end of cooking time, carefully unwrap each rib section from its foil packet and return them to direct heat zone (over heated coals or lit burners). This step helps create a crispy caramelized exterior commonly desired in grilled ribs.

Brush additional barbecue sauce over your reheated ribs if desired, then cook for another 2-3 minutes per side until they achieve optimal charred perfection.

Step 6: Serving Hot and Enjoying!

Once properly cooked with a desirable char, remove your reheated ribs from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes. This resting period allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, resulting in maximum tenderness.

Serve your deliciously reheated ribs hot and enjoy alongside your favorite sides – be it cornbread, coleslaw, or grilled veggies.


With these easy-to-follow instructions on how to reheat ribs on the grill, you can now confidently transform leftover ribs into mouthwatering delights. By taking care during each step of preparation and using direct and indirect heat zones effectively, you can maintain the original taste and texture while achieving an irresistible smoky finish. So fire up that grill and savor every bite of those perfectly reheated ribs!