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Secret Sauce BBQ Baby Back Ribs

 Melt-in-your-mouth, fall-off-the-bone BBQ ribs with the right balance of savory, sweet, & heat.

Course Entree
Cuisine American
Keyword BBQ, Ribs
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours 35 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 50 minutes
Servings 13
Calories 662 kcal
Author Holly Sander

Ingredients

For The Dry Rub:

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 10 pounds baby back pork ribs – also sold as “pork loin back ribs” (3 large racks)

For The Secret Sauce:

  • 1 cup yellow mustard
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2/3 cup ketchup
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup drippings from oven-cooked ribs (skim the fat before using)

Instructions

For The Dry Rub:

  1. Combine all dry rub ingredients in a medium bowl and mix well.

  2. Tear off three pieces of heavy duty foil at least 8 inches longer than the racks of ribs. Place them where you have easy access to them, shiny side facing down.

  3. Using your hands, coat each rack of ribs thoroughly with the dry rub.  Then place a rack of ribs in the foil, meat side facing down.

  4. Carefully bring together the long edges of the foil, then roll them together down toward the ribs. Close and roll up the short ends of the foil to seal the ribs for cooking.
  5. Transfer all ribs to an aluminum roasting pan. If you have three racks of ribs, you can stack the third one right on top of the other two.

  6. Refrigerate overnight or at least 12 hours.

Slow-Cook The Ribs:

  1. Place oven rack in center position, and preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place baking tray with ribs in the oven.  Cook at 350 for the first 30 minutes, then reduce heat to 300 and bake for another 90 minutes.

  3. After the first 2 hours, rotate the foil packets. Leave the temperature at 300 and cook for another 90 minutes.
  4. At this point check to be sure the ribs are done: leaving the ribs in the baking tray, carefully open one end of one foil packet. (Be careful the steam is extremely hot.) You should see that the meat has started to pull away from the bone. Gently test with a fork to ensure that they are tender and give easily, but still hold their shape to be able to survive grilling or broiling. If they need more time, re-seal the foil and return them to the oven for another 15-30 minutes.

  5. Carefully pour all the cooking liquid from the ribs into a Pyrex measuring cup and set aside. 

Make BBQ Sauce & Grill The Ribs:

  1. In a saucepan add the mustard, vinegar, ketchup, brown sugar, garlic, black pepper, and 1 cup of drippings from the ribs.  Bring the sauce to a gentle boil then reduce and allow to simmer for around 10 minutes. 

  2. Using a basting brush, cover the meat side of ribs with the sauce. Don’t worry about the bone side at this point.
  3. Thoroughly oil grill grates using paper towels and canola or olive oil, then bring grill to 450 degrees.
  4. Place ribs bone-side down on the grill, cook with lid closed for 3 minutes.
  5. Gently turn the ribs over, meat side down. Brush the bone side of the ribs with a small amount of BBQ sauce. Leave the grill open, and closely monitor the ribs during this step!  Grill the ribs long enough to caramelize, without burning them. You may need to adjust grill heat as necessary to achieve this, but normally this takes around 5 minutes.  Place the grilled ribs bone-side down onto a cookie sheet, then re-apply BBQ sauce over the meat side.