reheat ribs

3 Ways To Reheat Ribs: How to Keep Them Moist and Flavorful

Briefly, to reheat ribs, you can choose from three different methods: in the oven, in the microwave, or in the air fryer. Each method has its pros and cons, depending on how much time you have and how you like your ribs.

Juicy ribs are a real treat for gourmets. Prepared on the grill, they turn into a soft piece of meat that melts in your mouth with, of course, an infinite smell and taste of barbecue. If you know that lovely feeling, you know that we almost always barbecue more meat than we can eat.

And then the cold ribs remain for later. But how do you turn them back into a delicious hot meal that tastes the same as if it had just been grilled?

Warming Up Ribs In The Oven

The oven is actually the best way to reheat if you want soft and juicy beef or pork ribs as they were after the first baking. You want to give them a chance to warm up nicely, retain humidity, and you want to do it slowly. The key to heating is a medium temperature.

Step 1: Preheat the Oven to 250 °F

First, take the ribs out of the fridge to stand for a while to get to room temperature. Then preheat the oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. As we mentioned, it is essential not to preheat the oven too much as the meat will dry out, and you will not get a nice result.

Step 2: Prepare the Meat for Baking

To get better juiciness and that distinctive caramelized rib taste, coat the meat with extra BBQ sauce. If you have leftovers from baking, the original sauce will be good or add a new one. Then wrap the ribs well in aluminum foil. This will prevent the sauce from spilling out, but it will also prevent it from burning during the heating process.

Step 3: Bake for about 20 to 30 minutes

Bake the ribs at the suggested temperature for about 20 to 30 minutes. As the temperature is lower, it will take a little longer for the meat to heat up fully. Approximately 5 minutes before the heating ends, you can increase the temperature to caramelize the sauce better.

Reheating Ribs In The Microwave

We suggest that you use this method only if you are really in a hurry and do not have time to use the oven. No matter how much barbecue sauce you add, the microwave tends to dry out the meat, and you will hardly get a great result as it does with the oven. But a man’s gotta do what man must do. If the microwave is your only solution, here’s how to do it.

Step 1: Prepare the Meat for Reheating

Place the leftover ribs on a microwave safe dish. Then add the sauce and be careful to cover as many pieces of meat as possible. So it is best to spread ribs on a plate so that each piece has enough space.

Step 2: Turn the Microwave on Medium Heat

Do not overdo it with the temperature. It is best to choose a medium program. Heat for about 3 minutes and then check if the meat is warm enough. Remember, the internal temperature must be high enough. If not, repeat for an additional 2 to 3 minutes and check the result. It should now be ready to eat.

Heating Up Ribs In The Air Fryer

An air fryer will undoubtedly be a better way than heating in a microwave oven, so if you have this appliance in your kitchen, choose it instead. It lasts slightly longer than the microwave method but certainly much shorter than the classic oven.

Step 1: Preheat the air fryer and arrange the meat in a basket

Turn on the air fryer to heat up for a few minutes. The ideal temperature will be around 375 F. While the appliance is heating up, you can arrange the meat in the air fryer basket. Be sure to set it all in one layer, and do not stack multiple pieces on top of each other. If you have too many leftover ribs, separating the process into several rounds is better.

Step 2: Set the timer for 8 minutes

When the sufficient temperature has been achieved, insert the basket with meat into the air fryer and set it to a cycle of 8 minutes. The required heating time can vary depending on the ribs’ size, so ensure everything is heated up evenly when you take the meat out. The internal temperature of the reheated ribs must be sufficient. You can use a meat thermometer if you’re unsure.

How To Store Pork and Beef Ribs

Before you start learning how to reheat them, let’s first see how to properly store spare ribs to be safe for consumption and make the reheating job easier for you.

First, you have to keep them in the fridge. It’s good to store them in the refrigerator as soon as possible, preferably within an hour after you’re done with your meal.

This process will prevent the formation of unwanted bacteria on the meat and stop the drying of the leftover ribs moist that surely comes when they stand on the kitchen counter for a long time. In that case, the result of reheating later will be much tastier.

The last tip for storage is to cut the ribs to the serving size and store them in the refrigerator. This will allow them to cool faster, and they will be easier to heat up later. If you have more than the one-lunch amount, you can separate it into a few portions and freeze the ribs for the future.

See more: How To Reheat Smoked Brisket



The next time you prepare a barbecue, feel free to intentionally roast more juicy ribs than you need and store them in the fridge for the following day. With the reheating method in the oven, you will get juicy and delicious meals as if you just took them off the grill. It takes a bit more time because the warm-up is done at a medium temperature, but the result will delight you.

Or choose the air fryer instead. But whatever your preferences are regarding heating methods, definitely use one. Nobody likes to eat cold ribs.

Up Next: How To Reheat Steak

reheating ribs in oven

Image by depositphotos/JuliaMikhaylova

About The Author

Scroll to Top