Hunsaker Rib Hanger Advice


Bill Freiberger

TVWBB All-Star
I just got the Hunsaker rib rack for my 18.5" WSM. Can someone tell me the process for using it? How many coals do you light to get the fire started? How many ribs have you done? I need to cook 14 racks for a party and I can't afford any mistakes. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Fourteen full racks in an 18.5 is aggressive!

I usually cook half racks to allow some additional space between the fire and the lowest rib. Since you don't have that option, I'd suggest flipping the ribs top to bottom half way through to even out the cooking. Or just accept that the bottom rib may get crunchy (not so terrible).

I'd suggest putting a cooking grate over the coal ring to catch any dropsies.

You might want to consider going high heat and doing two cooks. I don't wrap when I do ribs. But if you are wrapping, maybe cook two batches and finish the wrapped ribs in the oven?
Just to add, double hook the ribs onto the hanger and yes on the grate over the coals.

I've never flipped or wrapped, but I'm using the 22, and usually cook at 275 or even a little more.
Agree with the others.. I would probably do two batches of 7 racks rather than one batch of 14. If you're doing baby backs, you may be able to finish a batch in 3 hours or so. Spare ribs or St. Louis style will definitely take longer. Keeping ribs warm, wrapped tight, and in a cooler for another 3 hours shouldn't be an issue. Would also resist the urge to over crowd... I would guess you want to maintain a 1 inch gap between the racks for even cooking.
14 not real practical in a wsm 18. Imo.
You can alway keep them in 150° oven indefinitely .
Tightly covered pan, or wrapped individually
Thanks for the advice, everyone. I think I'll do ten in the WSM and throw the additional four on one of my other smokers. The think about ribs, is even thought they're thin they take of a lot of real estate. If I were making pulled pork for the same number of people, I could easily get it done in an 18.5 WSM.