How Long To Cook Ribs In Oven At 400

Cooking ribs is an art in itself. From choosing the perfect blend of spices to selecting the best cut of meat, cooking ribs is not just about flavor but also about timing. Everyone has their own grilling methods, but sometimes grilling ribs outside isn’t always an option. When the weather doesn’t permit or you don’t have access to a grill, cooking ribs in the oven is a convenient alternative. In this article, we will explore the best ways to cook ribs in the oven at 400 degrees and how long they should cook.

The Prep Work

Before we dive into the cooking process, it’s essential to prepare the ribs properly. Start by removing the thin membrane located on the back of the ribs. This membrane can cause the meat to become tough and chewy if left on, so it’s crucial to remove it. Once you’ve removed the membrane, season your ribs with your favorite spices. You can pick anything from basic salt and pepper to elaborate rubs that you love. Cover the ribs in foil before placing them in the oven. Make sure to crimp the edges tightly to prevent steam from escaping. This technique will ensure that the rib meat comes out tender and juicy.

How Long To Cook Ribs In Oven At 400: The Cooking Process

Once you’ve got your ribs seasoned and covered, it’s time to get them in the oven. The temperature and cooking time are the two most crucial elements when it comes to cooking pork ribs to perfection. Ribs cooked at 400 degrees will require cooking for approximately 25-30 minutes per pound. So, if you have a 4-pound rack of ribs, you should cook it for about 1 hour and 40 minutes. It’s also essential to check the meat’s internal temperature, which should be around 145 degrees Fahrenheit to ensure that the ribs are cooked through thoroughly.

To get the best results, place the ribs in a baking dish and fill the dish with about an inch of water. This step prevents the ribs from sticking to the foil and also keeps them moist. Keep the dish covered tightly with foil, and make sure to place them in the center rack of the oven.

To add an extra layer of flavor, try basting the ribs with your favorite BBQ sauce during the last 15 minutes of cooking. You can use a brush, ladle, or spoon to apply the sauce and then return the ribs to the oven uncovered. This step will add a beautiful caramelized glaze to the meat and give it a fantastic smoky taste.

Checking The Ribs For Perfect Doneness

The cooking time and temperature might differ depending on your oven and the size of the ribs. That’s why it’s essential to check the meat’s internal temperature with a meat thermometer. Before pulling the ribs out of the oven, insert the thermometer’s probe into the thickest and meatiest part of the rib. The temperature should read around 145 degrees Fahrenheit.

If you’re not confident about checking the internal temperature, you can use another technique to check if the ribs are cooked correctly. Lift the ribs up with a fork – when cooked, they should bend easily without breaking in half. If the meat is still tough and doesn’t bend easily, place them back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes, covered with foil, to complete the cooking process.

Once you’ve removed the ribs from the oven, it’s essential to let them rest for 10-15 minutes before cutting. Give the ribs some time to cool down so the juices can distribute throughout the meat. This resting period also makes it easier to cut the ribs without shredding them.


Cooking ribs is one of the best ways to add a little bit of spice to your life. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or just starting, cooking ribs in the oven is accessible to everyone. When cooking ribs in the oven at 400 degrees, timing is the key. Remember to season them well, add a little bit of water, and cover them with foil to keep the moisture. Add BBQ sauce as desired and baste towards the end. Check the internal temperature or use the bend test to ensure perfect doneness. And, last but not least, don’t forget to let the ribs rest for a few minutes before cutting them. Try out these tips, and you’ll be amazed at how easy cooking ribs in the oven can be!

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How Long To Cook Ribs In Oven At 400?

What is the average cooking time for ribs in the oven at 400 degrees?

The average cooking time for ribs in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit is about 2 hours.

Can I bake ribs at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for a shorter time?

Yes, you can bake ribs at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for a shorter time. However, the cooking time will depend on the thickness of the ribs and whether they are beef, pork, or baby back ribs. It is recommended to use a meat thermometer to ensure that the internal temperature of the meat reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit for pork and 160 degrees Fahrenheit for beef.

How often should I baste the ribs while cooking?

It is recommended to baste the ribs every 30 minutes while cooking. This will help keep the meat moist and add flavor to the ribs.

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