Can you Cook Frozen Ribs – Complete Guide

Can you Cook Frozen Ribs

Are you feeling hungry in the middle of the night and you only have frozen ribs in your freezer? The first question that will pop up in your mind will be if can you cook frozen ribs without any risk, right? Well, the answer is yes, you can easily cook frozen ribs whenever you want. 

Not only they are tasty, but they are also simple to cook on the grill or smoker. You can prepare ribs in large quantities when there is a family dinner or gathering at your home. Besides that, they can be cooked in the microwave, a cooker, or a roasting pan.

How you can defrost and cook them accurately, let’s find out in this article! 

Can you Cook Frozen Ribs?

You will be happy to know that frozen ribs can be prepared easily whenever you want. Utilizing frozen ribs instead of fresh or defrosted meat will have some variations. Cooking frozen ribs will require some additional time that can be increased by 50%. But still, you can choose any method according to your preference. 

When you want to cook frozen ribs, you must prepare the ribs to the right temperature. Also, you will need to take some extra care of them and give them a little more time while preparing them.

The good part is that ribs can be prepared in a variety of ways, including grilling, smoking, baking, and more. There are some best portable smokers and grills for cooking them. 

The majority of methods strongly advise defrosting them first. If that is beneficial and you want to defrost it, there are a few easy methods you can choose to defrost frozen meat.

But it is also safe and appropriate to cook frozen ribs in the oven by adjusting the temperature. 

How can I cook Frozen Ribs? 

According to the general instructions, before cooking frozen ribs, they must be heated for at least 2 minutes. For heating ribs, you will have to adjust the temperature to over 70°F to remove any contaminants. 

Anything below that temperature might turn your ribs into a breeding ground for infections and germs. This will increase your risk of getting food illness. Food illness is something you surely want to prevent, right? So, it is essential to carefully stick to these precautions. 

Thus, boiling a completely frozen turkey or ribs for only 2 minutes might not be sufficient. It will not be enough to completely prepare it and kill any hazardous microorganisms.

In this condition, you must do the following things to guarantee that your frozen ribs are prepared completely in the microwave.

  • Before preparing ribs, you will have to let your frozen ribs settle at the temperature of 150 degrees for 20 minutes. 
  • Then you will have to adjust your oven to 150°C (302°F) to ensure that the frozen ribs are cooked from all sides. Cooking time for frozen ribs at that temperature should be around 1 hour and 30 minutes. 
  • You also have to check the weight of the ribs before cooking. The time required for cooking frozen ribs will depend upon the size and weight of the ribs. 
  • If your frozen ribs are heavier in weight, you will have to give them additional 15 minutes to thoroughly prepare at a temperature of about 200°F.

What is the best way to cook frozen ribs in an Oven? 

You can follow the steps given below to cook the frozen ribs in the microwave oven: 

  1. First of all, you will have to set the oven to 300 °F.
  1. You must wrap a baking dish or pan with aluminum foil to prepare it for baking. Then you will have to put the frozen ribs in the baking pan. 
  1. When start cooking, you will have to cook the ribs without covering them. At the start, it is preferable to prepare them for around an hour.
  1. The aluminum foil must be carefully wrapped around the ribs and cooking pan. You must ensure that they are completely covered with the foil.
  1. You must cook the ribs in the microwave at this temperature for a further 2-3 hours. You will need an extra 1-2 hours for the baby’s back rib. You can reduce this time if the ribs had been defrosted.
  1. Then you will have to bake the ribs to a minimum temperature of 145°F. Also, it is suggested to set the temperature at 190 degrees. It is because doing so will turn the ribs more luscious and delicious. Not only that but also it will help to remove the fats in the meat.

Remember that this procedure has intended especially for frozen ribs. While baking ribs, you must notice the difference in cooking time between baby back ribs and normal ribs. Also, during cooking, you add some sauces to enhance the taste and make them tender as well as juicy.

Different Methods of Thawing your Frozen Ribs 

Some methods of thawing your frozen ribs can perform well than others. The most important thing to keep in mind is to never defrost frozen ribs at room temperature. They will spend too much time in the danger zone when you will put them in a temperature between 40 and 140 degrees. 

Below are some effective methods of defrosting your frozen ribs:

  • In the Refrigerator 
  • In cold Water 
  • In the Microwave 

In the Refrigerator 

The finest and most efficient method for defrosting frozen ribs is in the refrigerator. Unfortunately, it will require a bit longer to defrost accurately.

  1. You will have to put the ribs in a tray that must be big enough to accommodate the rib’s racks after taking them out of the freezer. You can face the risk of cross-contamination when the liquids drop off. It can happen if any part of the rib racks hangs over the container’s side.
  2. Then you will place the jar on the fridge’s bottom row. This will prevent the ribs from facing slight temperature changes while opening the fridge door. This will keep them cold to defrost accurately.
  3. A whole pair of ribs would prepare for cooking 24 hours after thawing in the refrigerator. It could require up to 36 hours for a bigger shelf. 
  4. It is preferable to remove the ribs from the freezer as soon as possible. It is because you can only store them in the refrigerator for up to 4 days once they have defrosted

In cold Water 

If you can do it properly, defrosting meat in cold water is efficient and preferable. Additionally, it requires less time than defrosting in a refrigerator.

  1. You will have to start this method by placing the frozen ribs in a tray that won’t leak. The condition is that you will have to place all of the ribs within a zip-top container. Before creating a secure cover, you must press the container and extract as much air as you can out of the canister.
  1. Then look for a container that can hold all the ribs you want to defrost together with enough cold water to cover them. Put the wrapped ribs on the container, then pour the cold water from the tap on it. You must not use boiled or warm water. Otherwise, the meat will defrost too quickly and reach the danger zone.
  1. After every 30 minutes, you must keep changing the water. If necessary, you should put ice cubes in the water to retain it chilled. The larger slabs of short ribs will require 4 to 5 hours in the ice water to completely defrost. On the other hand, a full stock of baby back ribs will need about an hour.

In the Microwave 

Well, defrosting frozen ribs in the microwave is not a highly preferable method. Particularly, for huge parts of frozen rib, experts don’t recommend using the microwave.

But if you want to use this method, you must follow the instructions given below: 

  1. First, you will have to adjust the microwave to 30 percent speed for defrosting. If you will use the microwave at maximum power, you can get some of the ribs partially cooked and the remainder frozen.
  1. Put the ribs in a dish that can go in the oven and must be oven-safe. The dish with a cover will work best because you can put it on the upper end without having a snug fit. Now you will have to place the canister with ribs in the oven.
  1. Then you will have to turn the side of the canister once the microwave has operated for three minutes.
  1. To continue defrosting until the ribs are defrosted, you must adjust the timer for 3 more minutes. Based on the size of the ribs, the entire process could take up to 8 minutes.


Ribs are a well-liked meal for night barbecues and other events. You can safely freeze ribs and use them later whenever you need. Can you cook frozen ribs right out of the freezer? I have clarified this question in detail in this article. 

Thus, there are multiple ways to cook frozen ribs as you can cook them on grills, in the ovens, and on the smoker. You must be aware of how you can cook them by maintaining the delicious taste of the ribs. 

Was this article informative? Share your views with me!


Can I safely cook frozen ribs? 

Although fresh meat is always preferable, frozen ribs can also be tasty. You can cook frozen ribs in your grills, ovens, or smokers. When you are utilizing frozen meat, you must always defrost it before start preparing it.

Can I put frozen ribs in the oven? 

Without first thawing it, it is fine to prepare frozen or half-frozen pork in the microwave, or on the stovetop. When you will not defrost it, the preparation time can be increased by around 50%. Thus, a 325-degree temperature is recommended to cook frozen ribs in an oven.

Can I cover ribs in foil while cooking in the oven? 

If you want to bake frozen ribs in the oven, you can wrap ribs in foil. It will help the ribs prevent drying out. Before cooking in the oven, you will have to adjust the temperature to 300 degrees.

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