The best wood for smoking ribs is really dependent on the type of ribs you are smoking. The flavor of beef ribs and pork ribs can can benefit from the use of different types of wood when smoking.
The best wood for smoking beef ribs
Beef, in general goes best with stronger flavored woods like oak, mesquite and hickory. Personally, I think oak is the perfect wood for beef of any kind, including ribs. The flavor of mesquite, which is excellent on cuts like brisket, can be a little overwhelming on cuts with more exposed surface area like beef short ribs.
The best wood for smoking pork ribs
When it comes to smoking pork ribs, you really can’t go wrong with hickory wood. Pork ribs can also benefit the addition of some from fruit woods such as apple, cherry or peach. You can blend hickory with small amounts of fruit woods to find the perfect combination to suit your tastes. The addition of fruit wood to a base of hickory gives you the opportunity to create unique flavors that can really accentuate the flavor of your pork ribs.