Foolproof Ribs

Cooking ribs can be intimidating. It’s a huge hunk of meat. I get it. But this technique, quite similar to the Chicken Thighs 1 Million Ways recipe, is very simple; it just requires TIME. It’s also such an easy way to create an impressive and generous protein when catering for a dinner party or larger group.

SHOPPING LIST: 2 racks baby back or St. Louis ribs, pork rub, salt, 1 jar BBQ sauce

If you’ve been following along – one thing I am really trying to communicate with this blog or my cooking style is that everything doesn’t have to be exactly as I prepare it. For this particular recipe, you could just use salt + pepper on your ribs if you like a simpler flavor profile — I used Stubb’s Spice Pork Rub with a mixture of salt, sugar, paprika and other spices because the sugar helps the ribs get that caramelization. Once your ribs are THOROUGHLY rubbed with your seasoning of choice, I like to give the tops of each rack an extra sprinkle of salt and they go on a sheet pan and under the broiler for 10 minutes on each side, or until each side has beautiful, dark sear marks. *** Broilers can be temperamental, so just peak on your ribs 5 minutes into the cooking process to make sure they aren’t burning – there is a BIG difference between a slight char and being burnt!!! And in the warmer months, this step can be done on an outdoor grill!

Once the ribs are seared, slather the tops of each rack with your favorite BBQ sauce and lower your oven to 225 degrees. For Saturday night’s ribs I used the Dinosaur BBQ Roasted Garlic Honey BBQ Sauce. I have realized that I do not like my ribs too saucy so I don’t go overboard here, especially since you can always add extra sauce when the ribs are done. You can also do this WITHOUT sauce. If you go that route, just make sure to add a 1/3 a cup of liquid – either beef stock or beer or orange juice – to the bottom of your sheet pan so there is some moisture or else the ribs will stick to the pan. Once your ribs are sauced (or not), cover them with tin foil and in the oven they go for 5 HOURS!!!! Low and slow, baby.

OTHER FAVORITE RIB SAUCES:

  • Bone Suckin’ Sauce (the classic)
  • Lillie’s Q Carolina Gold Sauce (vinegar-based mustard sauce)
  • Stubb’s Spicy BBQ Sauce (bringing the heat!)
  • Soy Vey Very Teriyaki (for an Asian twist) ** when I go Asian with the ribs, I love using a basic Chinese 5-spice and salt mixture for the rub

Let the ribs cool while still covered for a good 30 minutes before slicing. I like to use the remnant juices from the base of the sheet pan as a glaze for the ribs. As for the rest of the meal, I prefer serving the ribs with BRIGHT and FRESH accoutrements – like the Dill-icious Cucumber Salad or a classic coleslaw. Obviously a classically stewed green like kale or collards is always a welcome addition as well. My husband loves when the ribs are served with potato pancakes – so thank you Streit’s for making that so simple. No shame in my Streit’s game.

Lastly, the best part of the ribs are the leftovers. We are always getting creative with the leftover “pulled pork.” I always starts with frying the pulled rib meat with oil and tons of garlic so the pork gets crispy like carnitas. In the past I have mixed the meat in with with macaroni and cheese which is totally over the top but mega delish, or you just mix the meat with a little extra sauce and pile it on a fresh potato roll for an amazing sandwich. Last Sunday the leftover ribs became the base of this epic BBQ meets Mexican huevos rancheros. Yellow corn arepas for the win!

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