Beef Ribs Vs. Pork Ribs: Which Is Better On The Grill?

Beef ribs and pork ribs are extremely different foods to enjoy, with each of them having its pros and cons.

People will always have their favorite and will probably stick to grilling the one, rather than trying the other. It’s always a risk when grilling a new food.

Beef Ribs Vs. Pork Ribs: Which Is Better On The Grill?

You don’t know if you’re going to like it or not and this can make or break a good barbecue.

Everyone likes to enjoy burgers, grilled chicken, steaks, and all of the rest, but ribs will always be up there as one of the most popular foods to enjoy on a grill.

That’s where we come in. To save you from trying something you don’t like and to make sure that you love your next barbecue, we’re made a guide on which type of rib is best on the grill.

We’ll outline the positives and the negatives and the different flavors that they both bring to the table.

What Are Pork Ribs?

Pork ribs are ribs that come from pigs’ shoulders. They usually have some fat on them and are usually quite fatty in flavor and texture.

The reason for this is that these are the parts of the pig that were used for bacon, sausages, or ham. These cuts of meat are very rich, so they tend to be fatty and full of flavor.

How Do Pork Ribs Taste?

A lot of people don’t understand why pork ribs taste amazing. The truth is that they taste great because of the way they’re prepared. There are two main ways to cook them.

The first method involves smoking them over an open flame. This gives them a smoky flavor that’s very hard to replicate otherwise. 

The second way is by cooking them at a low temperature until they become tender.

Once cooked, this makes them fall apart easily and gives off a sweet aroma that’ll make any BBQ lover happy!

What Texture Do Pork Ribs Have?

When it comes to pork ribs, they typically have a high amount of fat on them. This means that they’re super juicy and also have a nice crispy texture.

This is what makes them such a fun food to eat while grilling. If you want a dry and crunchy style of rib, then try cooking them without any sauce or seasoning.

Otherwise, you should go for a milder sauce or rub.

What Are Beef Ribs?

The beef ribs are the ones that come from cows’ shoulders. They’re much leaner than the pork ribs and take away from the richness of the pork ribs.

Because of this, they’re also less flaky and flavorful. 

However, they do have a unique flavor all on their own that a lot of people prefer.

This variation of rib also tends to have less fat content than their pork counterparts, making them a healthier option for those who want one.

How Do Beef Ribs Taste?

Like the pork ribs, the beef ribs are great when they’re smoked before being cooked. When smoked, they get a delicious flavor that comes from the process.

As mentioned earlier, the beef ribs are much leaner than their pork counterparts, so they don’t pack as many flavors into them.

Instead, they’re more suited to packing out a strong flavor that has no problem standing up to whatever else you might be eating alongside them.

What Texture Do Beef Ribs Have?

As you may already know, the beef ribs are quite lean. This means that they don’t contain nearly as much fat.

This results in a drier texture, which is perfect for someone looking for a lighter-tasting rib. To add moisture back into the beef ribs, you can either marinate them in a sauce or use a rub.

Which One Is Healthier?

As with anything, we recommend choosing the healthier option when it comes to ribs. While the pork ribs are higher in fat, they still provide enough protein to keep you satisfied.

It’s the same with the beef ribs. As long as you avoid the extra sauces and other types of seasonings, they’re good to go.

However, it’s important to note that ribs aren’t especially healthy in general because of their fats and juices.

Which Type Of Rib Is Best For Grilling?

We decided to compare the two types of ribs to see which was better suited for grilling. Let us start by saying that this isn’t a scientific study.

All of this comes down to which rib people typically prefer. That being said, we did find some pretty interesting things about what works best and what doesn’t work well.


The first thing we noticed is that both the pork ribs and the beef ribs were equally tasty. There wasn’t a clear winner here.

We found that the pork ribs had a richer flavor with a little bit more smoke, but the beef ribs were just as tasty in a different way. Much like how you wouldn’t compare a steak to pork chops.


From our experience, we found that the pork ribs are easier to chew with slightly softer meat. On the flip side, the beef ribs are harder and denser.

This means that they require a little bit more chewing and can take longer to eat. However, once you’ve started eating, you’ll be begging for more.


The appearance of the ribs is where the more obvious differences came into play. The pork ribs look darker and meatier than the beef ribs.

This makes sense since they come from thicker cuts of meat.

Beef ribs are a lot bigger than pork because of the animal that they come from – so they usually cost a bit more and are a bit harder to find.

Overall, there isn’t any clear winner here. Both options taste great and look amazing while cooking.

If you’re having trouble deciding between these two options, we suggest trying them both. You’ll soon figure out what your favorite is!

Both of these ribs are a great option, you just have to find out for yourself.

Different Types Of Pork Ribs

Beef Ribs Vs. Pork Ribs: Which Is Better On The Grill?

There are two main different types of pork ribs – spare ribs and baby back ribs. Spareribs are the big ones, whereas baby backs are smaller.

Baby backs tend to have a thinner cut, making them perfect for grilling. 

Spares are a bit tougher and not as tender as baby backs, however, they’re great to place on the grill too.

They also tend to be larger, making them perfect for barbecuing. When buying pork ribs, make sure you get the right size.

Pork Ribs Vs. Beef Ribs – Which Are Better To Cook?

If you’ve ever wondered if buying pork ribs and beef ribs are worth it, then the answer is yes.

Because both of the rib types taste so different, you need to try them for yourself and understand the difference. 

From our experience, pork ribs especially are worth buying. Not only do they taste fantastic, but they’re also much easier to cook.

Plus, they don’t dry out quite as fast as beef ribs. When mixing both with some sort of barbecue sauce or marinade, you’ve got a winning combination.

How Long Do Ribs Take To Grill?

One thing we noticed when testing the beef ribs and pork ribs is that each took around the same amount of time to grill.

About an hour and 15 minutes, respectively, depending on the amount of heat being used. What’s important to note though is that the pork ribs took less time to finish cooking.

Since they’re thicker, they heat up faster and stay juicier.

The result was a slightly drier piece of meat, but still delicious. It’s all about personal preference.

For most folks, they would probably prefer the beef ribs over the pork ribs, but that might change depending on your preferences.

Either way, both options will give you plenty of good food!

What Type Of Cooking Method Should I Use For My Pork Ribs?

For those who love to grill their meat, ribs are no exception. Using a grill to cook them gives off that extra smoky flavor that makes ribs such an incredible treat.

Grilling is the best method for cooking pork ribs because it allows you to get that nice char on the outside without overcooking the inside.

It also allows the juices to flow and creates a wonderful taste.

However, this doesn’t mean that grilling ribs can’t be done in other ways. As mentioned above, you could sear the ribs first and then put them on the grill.

Another alternative is to use a smoker. A smoker is a device designed to smoke meats to enhance their flavors. These devices are known for producing very moist results.

How To Decide On My Cooking Appliance

Now that you know how long both types of ribs take to cook, let’s talk about what kind of cooker works best for them. If you want to grill your ribs, you’ll need something like a gas grill.

Gas grills allow you to control the temperature and keep it consistent throughout the process.

With charcoal grills, you have to constantly add more fuel, which can lead to inconsistent temperatures.

If you want to go the smoking route, you’ll need to find a smoker that can maintain a steady temp. This means that you should look into getting a pellet smoker.

Pellet smokers work by burning wood pellets instead of traditional fuels like propane or natural gas. You can choose from either electric or gas-powered models.

The advantage of these products is that they produce a consistently low temperature.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, there are a few differences between beef and pork ribs. The biggest one is that pork ribs tend to be thicker than beef ribs.

They’re also much easier to cook since they don’t dry out quite as quickly. Both ribs are great additions to any meal, but the pork ribs just seem to fit better with barbecues and grilled foods.

So, if you’re looking for a quick and easy dinner, then pork ribs are the way to go. But, if you want to create a unique dish, then you should consider beef ribs.

There’s no wrong answer and it all comes down to what taste you prefer and the portion sizes of the ribs you intend to eat.

So, why not go and try both? You might find yourself preferring unexpected food!

John Rinder
Latest posts by John Rinder (see all)