How Many Ribs In A Slab: A Guide On Everything You Need To Know

How many ribs in a slab? If you have always been fascinated or curious, keep on reading the rest of this post and we’ll let you know. To make this even more informative, we will also discuss other things that you have to know about ribs.

What will I get from reading this article? This is probably one of your questions by now. Well, by knowing the exact number of ribs in a slab, you will never be fooled. Whether you are ordering in a restaurant or in a meat market, you can be sure of getting full ribs with the right slabs!

Know The Numbers

The next time you dine in a restaurant, it is important to know exactly how many ribs in a slab. This means that when you order a whole slab, you will know exactly how many ribs there will be. You can always complain if it is lesser than the actual number that should be present.

The same thing should be the case whenever you are in the market and buying a full slab. Count the number of slabs so that you will be sure of getting the best value for money. Take note, however, that there is also a half slab.

In the case of pork ribs, on average, there are 10 to 13 ribs in a slab, although it is commonly 13. Each bone, meanwhile, will have a length ranging from 3 to 6 inches. When it comes to weight, the maximum is usually 3 pounds.

On the other hand, for beef ribs, a whole slab will have a minimum of 11 ribs. If it has not been trimmed, like with pork ribs, there should be 13 bones. For the length, it is typically 3 to 4 inches for short rib and 6 to 8 inches per spare rib.

Whenever you dine in a restaurant or shop for fresh meat, do not be confused when you read the word slabs and racks. They mean the same thing!

Tips In Choosing Ribs

When you are in the market and looking for ribs, counting the slabs is one thing that you should do to know which one to buy. Other than this, however, you also need to exert effort in evaluating the quality of the meat, especially with regards to its freshness.

The coverage of the meat around the bone is one of the most important things you should take into consideration. There should be more than enough meat surrounding the bone. The meat should not also be too close to the bone. To add, there should be a minimal amount of fat.

In some instances, the ribs being sold are advertised as enhanced. This means that it was treated with flavorings, sodium phosphate, and water. This leads into an artificial flavoring that is sometimes too salty. As much as possible, avoid enhanced ribs.​

Pay attention to the color of the meat. Beef tends to be darker than pork ribs. Make sure that it is not pale. There should also be no thick mold-like appearance. It should also appear moist and juicy to guarantee its freshness.

If you want the best quality for your meat, do not buy one that is frozen. This means that the meat has already hardened and there can be alterations in its flavor and texture. Fresher is always better when it comes to meat.

However, if you have already bought a slab of ribs but you are not yet ready to cook it, it should be frozen to prolong its shelf life. If not, this can be contaminated and will obviously cause a variety of health problems, such as food poisoning.​

Different Ways Of Cooking Ribs

Now that you have a full slab of ribs at home, what should you do with it? What is the best way to cook it? How can you make it more flavorful? In this section, we will briefly discuss how you can prepare a mouthwatering treat using your full rack of ribs.

It all starts with choosing the right meat, so pay attention to the discussion earlier. Also, make sure to buy meat that is enough for those who will eat it. At least four slabs of ribs per person are the standard, provided that it will be served with other food.

To make it more flavorful, marinating the ribs properly is also crucial. Make sure to keep it in the refrigerator when marinating and should not be left at room temperature. Experiment with different herbs and spices depending on the specific flavor that you want.

Before you grill the ribs, it will also help if it will be pre-cooked in boiling water. This is a good way to make it tender and juicy. However, make sure to not overdo as it can cause the meat to dry.

When grilling the ribs, you should also pay attention to the level of heat. It should not be too high as this will remove the moisture from the meat and will not make it juicy. This can also lead to inconsistency, causing some parts to be overcooked and others to be undercooked.


From the discussions above, I hope that you now know how many ribs in a slab. More than the actual number, we have also discussed some important things you need to know. Here is a summary of what we have mentioned earlier:

  • Typically, there are 10 to 13 slabs of ribs of pork or beef.
  • When buying ribs, pay attention to its appearance, especially its color. Avoid buying one that has been previously frozen.
  • Before grilling ribs, make sure that it is pre-cooked. It should never be grilled in high and direct heat to avoid drying out and inconsistency.

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