Top 5 Barbecue Ribs in America

Click through the gallery to discover the best barbecue ribs featured on Food Network's Top 5 Restaurants.

#5: Rib Sandwich — Helen's Bar B Q

Not only is Helen the owner of Helen's Bar B Q, but she's also the pitmaster, a job that a woman rarely holds. Her ribs are unique in that they're cooked without seasoning, so the meat's own flavor comes through. But it's her secret barbecue sauce that makes the ribs so tasty. You can get the ribs a la carte or in a combo platter, but it's the rib sandwich that keeps customers coming.

Find the Restaurant: Helen’s Bar B Q

#4: Blueberry Chipotle Ribs — 12 Bones Smokehouse

"It definitely took balls in the beginning to sell a fruity rib," says 12 Bones Smokehouse owner Bryan King, whose ribs feature a sauce that's made with fresh blueberries and chipotles in adobo. The process of making the ribs starts with smoking them over oak, then they're finished on the grill with a mop sauce and finally the blueberry chipotle sauce. The sauce is now so popular that the restaurant bottles it for sale.

Find the Restaurant: 12 Bones Smokehouse

#3: Red Chile Ribs — El Pinto Restaurant

It's a family business at El Pinto, where twins Jim and John Thomas now run the New Mexican restaurant their parents opened in 1962. The secret to their mouthwateringly spicy ribs is a paste made of dried caribe chiles that's rubbed onto the meat and allowed to marinate for 24 hours.

Find the Restaurant: El Pinto Restaurant

#2: Texas Beef Ribs — Louie Mueller Barbecue

Louis Mueller Barbecue was originally a meat market, and business began booming once the establishment started selling food in the 1940s. Now it's so famous for its beef ribs that customers come from all over to enjoy them. The ribs are seasoned with just salt and lots of pepper before being smoked for seven to 10 hours. You'll want to come early before they sell out.

Find the Restaurant: Louie Mueller's Barbecue

#1: Full Slab of Ribs — Pappy's Smokehouse

"The rib is my canvas," says casino executive-turned-competitive barbecuer Skip Steele, who has created a slab of ribs at Pappy's Smokehouse that starts off prepared in a St. Louis, Mo., style and finishes in Kansas style — or what Skip calls "hybrid barbecue." Even though the ribs have no barbecue sauce, they're so succulent that it almost seems they do. The ribs are so popular that 6,000 pounds of them fly of the grills every day.

Find the Restaurant: Pappy’s Smokehouse

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