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One of my favorite things to cook sous vide are ribs. One of the reasons for this is sous vide can fully tenderize the ribs without any risk of drying them out. The ribs can then be finished however you like, usually by searing, grilling, or even briefly smoking them. This is true of any kind of rib including sous vide St. Louis ribs, sous vide beef ribs, and sous vide short ribs.
For this preparation I decided to use country style ribs for the sous vide ribs and paired them with sweet apples and an orzo salad. The best part of this recipe is that it has very little hands on time so you can make it during even the busiest of weeks.
Making sous vide ribs is a pretty quick and easy process. The beef ribs are first seasoned and then cooked at a temperature range of 140°F to 180°F (60°C to 82.2°C) for 8 to 24 hours, depending on how tender you want them. With sous vide pork ribs we use the range of 135°F (57.2°C) to 141°F (60.5°C). Depending on the type of pork ribs, they are cooked anywhere from 8 hours to several days.
Since we used country style ribs in this recipe we sous vide the ribs at 140°F (60°C) for 8 to 12 hours. This time frame makes these sous vide ribs ideal for busy weeks because you can put them in the sous vide machine in the morning when you leave for work and they will be done when you get home.
To top the sous vide ribs we use some apples cooked down with butter and brown sugar then topped with lemon juice and mint. Apples are a common pairing with pork ribs and it goes well here.
Pork and apples are a classic food pairing and here we achieve that with country style ribs with a sweet apple topping. The sous vide ribs are cooked for 8 to 12 hours until they are meltingly tender then the apples are cooked with butter and sugar until they begin to soften. Some mint and lemon juice pull the whole meal together.
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In a bowl mix together all the spices. Cut the ribs into pieces that will easily fit into your sous vide bags. Coat the country style ribs with the spice mix.
Place the ribs into the sous vide pouches then seal. Be sure you don't seal the ribs too tightly or the bones may pierce the bag.
At this point you can store the pouch in the refrigerator for up to 2 days, freeze it for up to 6 months, or cook it right away.
On the morning of the day you want to eat, preheat your sous vide water bath to 140°F (60°C).
Place the pouch in the water bath for 8 to 12 hours.
For more information on the cooking times you can read my detailed article which addresses why is there a range in sous vide cooking times.
Preheat two pans to medium-high heat.
Melt the butter in one pan. Add the apples and cook until they turn tender. Sprinkle with the brown sugar and lemon juice and stir to combine. Salt and pepper to taste. Remove from the heat and top with the chopped mint.
Remove the sous vide pouches from the water bath and take the sous vide ribs out of the sous vide pouches and pat them dry.
Add oil to the other pan and warm. Quickly cook the sous vide ribs just until the meat is seared, about 1 to 2 minutes per side. Take off the heat and serve with the apples.
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