How to Remove the Membrane from Ribs

One of the best ways to make sure that you get and produce BBQ pork ribs that are soft, juicy, and smoked to perfection is by the removal of the membrane from the ribs. This guide will be all about how to remove the membrane from ribs. You should know that the rib membrane is quite hard and crispy.

How to Remove the Membrane from Ribs

It also flaws the display of the meat after it has been cooked even though the meat would have become soft and juicy after smoking for long.

The thing is even though you would be taught how to remove the rib membrane, there are still some people that will prefer it untouched.

But, since you are here, reading this guide, I will assume you are all for the removal of the rib membrane and if so, then dive in and read through to the end.

Removing the membrane from ribs is the first thing that is required when smoking ribs even if you are new to it.

And, due to its hard, chewy nature, its removal is preferred by most pitmasters and rib eaters, and lovers.

You will learn what the membrane is and also how to remove it in this guide so, let’s get to it now.

What Is The Membrane On Ribs?

The membrane on ribs is quite very noticeable as you can find it on nearly all racks of pork and beef ribs.

It is the layer of silver or white skin that you will find on the bottom side of the rack.
It is also commonly referred to as “Silver skin” and it is quite often found on a great number of slices of meat, especially pork, beef, and lamb.

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The membrane on ribs serves as the protective layer or coat lining whose purpose is to cover some of the organs of the animal so, it is not something weird or unusual.

3 Easy Steps on How To Remove The Membrane From Ribs

Loosen The Membrane At One Edge

The first step to follow is to loosen the membrane at one edge and to that, you need to locate the membrane, then turn the ribs over to get them curved toward you.

You will find it attached to a thin, rather transparent layer of white tissue so, at one edge of the chunk of ribs, draw up a corner of the membrane.

And, to begin the process, slide the point of perhaps an unsharpened knife under it or you can make use of your fingers to pull it up.

To get it right, remember that only the membrane of the ribs is the only part of it that can be easily removed.

Pull The Membrane From The Ribs

The next step is to proceed to pull off the membrane from the ribs so, that when you have removed it from one end, all you then need to do is to pull it away from the ribs after you have a good hold of it.

The membrane of the ribs is quite slippery so, you will need a paper towel to be able to get a tight grip on it.

After which you can then resume pulling it away till everything is detached in one entire piece.

Get Rid Of The Membrane And Prepare Your Ribs

And, lastly, which is the last step on how to remove the membrane from the ribs, all you need to do is to get rid of the membrane and then proceed to prepare your ribs.

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You will get to see how elastic the abdominal muscle is when the membrane of the ribs has been detached.

And, this is one of the reasons why it is preferable to detach the membrane because the ribs are quite very chewy and tough before the membrane was removed.

You are to continue preparing and relishing your ribs after you have detached the membrane and gotten rid of it.

From slow cooking ribs to grilling them or smoking them, there are still various ways and methods you can use to prepare and cook them.

And, finding your favorite ribs is not a difficult task as some of them might include the oven-braised country-style pork ribs or/and the South American-style grilled pork ribs.

You should go for the beginner’s guide to pork ribs if you are a beginner at cooking ribs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Let’s go over a few frequently asked questions to get you to understand this topic more.

Why Do We Need To Remove It?

I’m sure you will be quite curious as to why do we need to remove the membrane from the ribs although it has been briefly mentioned and talked about above in this guide.

The membrane is not dangerous. It is safe to eat but, it might have some unpalatable taste and it is also hard and chewy. This is because the layer of silver skin has elastin which does not decompose when cooked and this can make the smoked pork ribs springy so, why not discard it.

Almost all BBQ rubs and marinades can be used to penetrate the meat with flavors and afterward, you can proceed to smoke your meat with flavored wood which will give your meat delicious flavors and all this can only happen after you’ve gotten rid of the membrane.

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You must get rid of the membrane because it will only serve as a barrier to the penetration of the smoke if left untouched.

What If I Can’t Remove The Membrane?

Another good and common question that is frequently asked is what if you can’t remove the membrane, what then?

Well, if you can’t remove the membrane and you are stuck, you shouldn’t worry as some membranes are pre-removed from the ribs.

And, even if the membrane is still on while you cook it, there’s no cause for alarm although many people prefer the membrane being gotten rid of as they don’t want the taste of their ribs affected.

Also, the juices and seasoning can still penetrate the skin and add flavor to the ribs because the skin is penetrable.

Conclusion on How To Remove The Membrane From Ribs

A delicious and tender rack of ribs is something everyone loves but, the tough membrane on the back of the ribs is something that makes it chewy and springy.

So, to permit the juices and seasons to infuse the ribs while cooking it, you will have to get rid of the silver skin which is also the membrane.

The removal of the membrane will make the ribs soft and juicy after being cooked and I’m sure that you now know how to remove the membrane from ribs which will bring us to the conclusion of this guide.

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