Best BBQ Ribs in Missouri (2019)


There are two main styles of barbecue in the state of Missouri, Kansas City-style and St. Louis-style. No matter where in the state you get your ‘cue, chances are you’ll see ribs on the menu. Spare ribs are so ubiquitous in the St. Louis area that they’re often referred to as St. Louis ribs and are typically grilled rather than slow smoked, as is standard practice for KC-style ‘cue. Our barbecue expert Ardie Davis recommends ordering the sauce on the side, as some places can overdo it (i.e. “baptize it”).

  • Tin Kitchen

    Tin Kitchen

    The pork ribs at Tin Kitchen are St. Louis Cut spare ribs, rubbed simply with Kosher salt and coarse black pepper, smoked over pecan wood for five hours.  During the cook the ribs are basted with a mix of Sweet BBQ sauce and cider vinegar.
    Photo courtesy of Sara French Photography / Tin Kitchen

  • A Little BBQ Joint

    A Little BBQ Joint

    Family owned A Little BBQ Join in Independence offers a wide selection of smoked meats, served with sauces and sides made in house. Ribs come as a short end, long end or full slab.
    Photo courtesy of A Little BBQ Joint

  • Sugarfire Smoke House

    Sugarfire Smoke House
    St. Charles

    Chef Mike Johnson prepares Sugarfire’s baby back ribs with Sugarfire Rub and plenty of brown sugar before smoking them for four hours at 250 degrees. The ribs then get a hearty mop of apple juice mixed with rub before being served.
    Photo courtesy of Sugarfire Smoke House

  • Dew Drop Inn

    Dew Drop Inn

    Ribs often sell out at Dew Drop Inn, where hungry meat lovers can order them by the half or full slab or four bones. BBQ dinners come with two sides.
    Photo courtesy of Ashley Recar at Vintage Image Portraits / Dew Drop Inn

  • Wabash BBQ

    Wabash BBQ
    Excelsior Springs & Chillicothe

    This restaurant in the historic passenger waiting room of the old train depot in Excelsior Springs is known for its award-winning ribs topped with Wabash BBQ sauce. Options include spareribs, baby back ribs, or long and short ends.
    Photo courtesy of jtlange2 via Instagram

  • Char Bar

    Char Bar
    Kansas City

    BBQ competitor Mitch Benjamin oversees the pits at this combination Southern smokehouse and beer garden. Ribs come by the half or full slab, or as part of Char Bar's signature trays, served with pickles, toast and sides.
    Photo courtesy of Aaron Leimkuehler / Char Bar

  • Bogart's Smokehouse

    Bogart's Smokehouse
    St. Louis

    The ribs from Bogart's Smokehouse in St. Louis are smoked low and slow over apple and cherry wood, and finished off with an apricot-bruleed glaze caramelized via blowtorch.
    Photo courtesy of Amy Schromm Photography / Bogart's Smokehouse

  • Q39

    Kansas City

    Led by national barbecue champion Rob Magee, Q39 has become well-known for pushing the boundaries of barbecue during its few short years of operation. The competition-style barbecue includes pork spareribs served with a honey glaze BBQ sauce.
    Photo courtesy of Q39

  • City Butcher and Barbecue

    City Butcher and Barbecue

    City Butcher and Barbecue in Springfield slow smokes their ribs for four hours over white oak and hickory, with salt, pepper and a light mop.
    Photo courtesy of City Butcher and Barbecue

  • Charlette's Rib

    Charlette's Rib

    The BBQ sauce from Charlotte's Rib comes from a family recipe from Charlotte Peters of “The Charlotte Peters Show.” A range of smoked meats are on offer, but the pork spareribs are the star.
    Photo courtesy of iStock / mphillips007

The top 10 winners in the category Best BBQ Ribs in Missouri are as follows:

  1. Tin Kitchen - Weston
  2. A Little BBQ Joint - Independence
  3. Sugarfire Smoke House - St. Charles
  4. Dew Drop Inn - Bloomsdale
  5. Wabash BBQ - Excelsior Springs & Chillicothe
  6. Char Bar - Kansas City
  7. Bogart's Smokehouse - St. Louis
  8. Q39 - Kansas City
  9. City Butcher and Barbecue - Springfield
  10. Charlette's Rib - Ballwin

A panel of experts partnered with 10Best editors to pick the initial 20 nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote.

Congratulations to all these winning restaurants!

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AlertThe Experts

Ardie A. Davis

Ardie A. Davis

Ardie A. Davis

10Best Editors

10Best Editors

10Best Editors