How Long To Cook Beef Ribs in Oven at 400?

Beef ribs are fantastic, especially when drenched in an amazing sauce. Although, we are impartial to ribs with a bit of rub instead. Before you can think about tucking into those beef ribs, you need to cook them. So, how long to cook beef ribs in the oven at 400?

Beef ribs need to be cooked to an internal temperature of 145F. This will take at least 25 minutes per pound of rib. If you are looking for well-done ribs, then this can go up to 30 minutes per pound. So, a 4lb rib could take up to 2 hours in the oven. 

On this page, we want to give you some in-depth information on cooking beef ribs. Along the way, we want to give you some useful advice that should help you to make perfectly cooked ribs, even when you are not slow-cooking them. 

How Long To Cook Beef Ribs in Oven at 400?

Do bear in mind that we are focusing purely on beef ribs here. You cannot use this information for cooking pork or veal ribs. Both of these require different cooking times.

When cooking ribs, it is important that you reach the minimum safe internal temperature of 145F. This is the temperature recommended by the USDA and it is the point when the bacteria inside meat will be killed, drastically reducing your chance of getting sick. There is no need to eat beef ribs ‘rare’. 

How long it takes beef ribs to reach the minimum safe temperature will depend on the weight of the beef ribs. In most cases, it should be 25-30 minutes per pound. You should start measuring the temperature somewhere around the 20-minute per pound mark.

Do bear in mind that you can go over 145F, and many people do. In fact, we recommend that you go to a minimum of 150F if you have especially fatty ribs. This is when the fat will start to break down, releasing far more flavor into the meat. Try to avoid cooking over 160F. This is the point when the juices start to evaporate, and you are left with dull and lifeless meat. 

Read also: How Long to Cook Tri-Tip in Oven at 350?

Here is a quick guide to cooking times:

  • 2lb beef ribs: 50 minutes to an hour
  • 2.5lb beef rib: an hour to an hour and a quarter.
  • 3lb beef ribs: an hour and a quarter to an hour and a half
  • 4lb beef ribs: roughly 1 hour 40 minutes to two hours.

How Do You Measure The Internal Temperature of Beef Ribs?

To measure the internal temperature of beef ribs, it is important that you use a digital meat thermometer. It is the only way to accurately gauge the temperature. 

When you are testing the internal temperature of the meat, stick the meat thermometer’s probe in the thickest part of the meat. You want to poke the probe through the meat until you are about halfway through. 

It is important that you only start testing the internal temperature near the end of the cooking process. If you start testing too soon, then you will end up with a load of holes in your meat. This can cause juices to leak out, removing flavor from your ribs.

Here is a quick temperature guide:

  • Below 145F: undercooked. Cook for a little longer.
  • 145F: meets USDA guidelines for minimum temperature. This is safe to serve.
  • 150F to 160F: the perfect temperature for serving your beef ribs. 155F is when we tend to serve our ribs.
  • 160F+: overcooked. The meat will probably taste dry and chewy. 

Do You Need To Rest Beef Ribs When Removing From The Oven?

Like all meats, you need to rest your beef ribs when you remove them from the oven. Many people recommend 5 minutes of resting time, but you will find that 10-15 minutes will result in more flavorful meat.

When you cook beef ribs or any meat for that matter, the juices inside the meat will start pooling in the center. Since the juices contain most of the flavor of the meat, this means that all of the flavors will be in the dead center of the meat, and the top and bottom will be rather dry.

When you rest your beef ribs, all of those meat juices will be ‘redistributed’. This means that you end up with a nice, juicy piece of meat. 

You don’t have to do anything too complicated when resting your meat. Just place the ribs on a plate and wait. You can baste them a little more if you wish. Most people will opt to add more sauce after resting. 

How Do You Cook Beef Ribs In The Oven?

Cooking beef ribs isn’t too difficult. In fact, it is a fairly hands-off process. We want to run you through it, step-by-step. You will be cooking beef ribs like a pro in no time! 

We are going to assume that you are planning on drenching your beef ribs in a delicious sauce. However, if you are planning on using a rub (or nothing at all), then you can skip that step. You don’t need to use a sauce for beef ribs when cooking at 400F. The meat will be cooking far too fast for it to really dry out. It is only when you are slow-cooking the beef ribs (generally around 200F to 250F) that drenching in the sauce really matters.

Adding sauce will not change the cooking times. 

Ingredients and Equipment For Cooking Beef Ribs

  • Beef ribs
  • Meat thermometer
  • Olive oil
  • Sauce (if using)
  • Rub (if using)
  • Salt ; pepper
  • Plate, for resting the meat.
  • Aluminum foil
  • Baking tray

Step 1: Preheat the Oven; Prepare the Ribs For Cooking

Preheat the oven to 400F. In the meantime, you can start preparing the ribs:

  • Place the ribs on a baking tray.
  • Drench the ribs in your selected sauce. If you are not using a sauce, then you can add your rub.
  • Generously drizzle oil on the ribs.
  • Sprinkle a good helping of salt; pepper (if you are using a rub, it may have salt; pepper in it).
  • Rub the ribs. Make sure every part is covered with the sauce/rub.
  • Cover the top of the ribs with your aluminum foil. This will help to lock in the flavor. 

Once your ribs are prepared, you can put them in the oven. 

Step 2: Cooking The Ribs

At this point, start a timer. You want to be aiming to cook your ribs for 25-30 minutes per pound. However, if you are using a sauce, then you have a bit of work to do along the way.

This means that if you have a 4lb beef rib, you should be cooking for around 1 hour and 40 minutes. Always check the weight of the ribs on the product packaging. If in doubt, weigh it yourself!  

Step 3: Basting The Ribs

This isn’t necessary, since the ribs should be cooking fairly quickly. However, every 10 minutes, feel free to add more sauce to the ribs. This will prevent it from drying out, plus help to add a dash more flavor.

Keep the oven door open for as little time as possible. You don’t want the temperature of the oven to fall.

About 5-10 minutes before the end of the cooking time, feel free to remove the aluminum foil. This can help crisp up the ribs. 

Step 4: Testing The Rib Temperature

When your ribs have cooked for roughly 20 minutes per pound, you can start testing the internal temperature. Your ribs are safe to eat from 145F, but we recommend aiming for 150F to 155F. Do not overcook the ribs (anything over 160F is overcooked).

When you measure the meat’s temperature, ensure that you always measure at the thickest part of the rib. You want to measure in the center of the meat. This is the part that will take the longest to heat up.

If the meat has reached the desired temperature, then remove it from the oven. If it hasn’t, then give it another 5-10 minutes. How often you check the temperature will be a judgment call. You don’t want to test so often that your ribs end up with a ton of small holes leaking juices, but you don’t want to test so little that you run the risk of overcooking the meat.

Step 5: Resting The Ribs 

Once your meat is cooked, put the ribs on a plate and wait 10-15 minutes.

If you are using a sauce, then you may want to add more sauce to the meat at this point. However, we tend to wait until after the meat has finished resting. This is because the meat is still cooking when you remove it from the oven. if you suddenly add some sauce to it, it could cause the temperature to fall, and it may hamper the resting process.

After 10-15 minutes, your meat should be ready to eat.

If you are cutting the ribs, then make sure that you always cut against the grain of the meat. This will reduce chewiness and, ultimately, ensure that your beef ribs are packed full of flavor. 

When Do You Add Sauce to Beef Ribs?

How often you add sauce to your beef ribs is up to you.

At the minimum, you should be adding sauce to the beef ribs before you start cooking.

During the cooking process, you can add more sauce to the beef ribs every 10-20 minutes. This will prevent the ribs from drying out. Although, honestly, if you are cooking at 400F, the chances of the ribs drying out are going to be slim. They won’t be in the oven anywhere near enough for the juices to start evaporating. 

You can add more sauce once you remove the ribs from the oven. This can be before or after the resting process. 

Why Is Your Beef Rib Chewy?

There are two reasons why your beef rib may be chewy:

  • You have overcooked the beef ribs.
  • You haven’t let the beef ribs rest.

Remember, anything over a 160F internal temperature means that the beef ribs have been overcooked. When meat is overcooked, the juices start to evaporate. When the juices aren’t in that meat, the flavor is lost, and the meat becomes chewy. 

The same will happen if you don’t let the meat rest for 10-15 minutes. The juices in freshly-cooked beef ribs will pool in the center of the ribs. The resting process will redistribute them through the ribs. If you don’t allow them to rest, then the meat will be flavorless and dry.

In rare cases, you may find that the meat can be a bit chewy if you slice it incorrectly. Beef, like all meat, should be cut against the grain. When you cut against the grain, you will be breaking down the muscle fibers, making the meat a bit easier to chew. This may help to counter some overcooking and lack of rest, but not by much. 


If your beef ribs are cooking in the oven at 400F, then it should take between 25 and 30 minutes per pound. The meat should have an internal temperature of 145F, minimum. However, most people will cook their beef ribs to around 150F-155F internal temperature. This is when the meat will be cooked to the most flavor-packed point. 

Remember, the key to good, juicy ribs is to rest them once you pull them out of the oven. Beef ribs should be rested for 10-15 minutes before you tuck them. 


How Long to Cook Beef Ribs in Oven at 400 Degrees?

It depends on the weight of the beef ribs. 25-30 minutes per pound of meat is an ideal starting point. However, your main aim is to reach an internal temperature of 145F. 

How Long To Cook Ribs at 400?

If you want medium-rare ribs, then 25 minutes per pound is good. If you want well-done, then 30 minutes per pound. You want an internal temperature of 145F. 

How Long To Cook Beef Ribs In Oven?

It will depend on the temperature and the desired ‘doneness’ level. At 400F, you should be cooking for a minimum of 25 minutes per pound.

Is 400 Degrees Too Hot For Ribs?

It isn’t too hot. It is too hot if you are slow-cooking the ribs. However, for standard beef rib cooking, it should be the perfect temperature. 



Hi! I’m Leila, just your normal mom trying to find out the way to make their kids eat the best food possible. Oh, I almost forget, I’m a meat lover too!

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