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Saturday
Apr202013

Little Sister's BBQ Ribs

I don't know where this recipe came from, I just remember my mother making these ribs in the oven and since we had never had the real thing, we thought they were pretty good.

I've taken this recipe up a notch, since Chris and I have become BBQ finatics. I still cook them in the oven for about 2 hours, and then move them to the smoker for the last 1 1/2 to 2 hours to give them that real smoke taste.  If you don't have a smoker, do them in the oven for about 3 1/2 hours, and then move them to your grill for the last 30 minutes to give them so real outdoor taste.  If you have a little smoker box for the grill, even better.  A word of caution:  if you use Chipotle chili powder, and the cayenne and the dry mustard you will get a very, very spicy result.  If you don't like your food spicy, use a sweet chili powder and eliminate the cayenne and dry mustard.

2 racks unseasoned baby back ribs

For the Rub:

¼ cup brown sugar
2 Tbs paprika (sweet smoked if you have it)
1 Tbs black pepper
1 Tbs salt
1 Tbs chili powder (chipotle if you have it)
1 tsp cayenne
1 tsp celery seed, ground
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp dry mustarg
1 tsp coriander
½ tsp ground clove or allspice
2 cups cider vinegar (and 2 cups more for the smoker)
2 cups water (and 2 quarts more for the smoker)

  • Soak your wood chips or chunks in water for about an hour before starting your smoker.  I usually soak them right as I put the ribs in the oven.
  • Mix all of the dry ingredients together.  You should get about 1 cup of rub, which is twice what you will need for this recipe.  You can save the rest in a sealed plastic container for any type of grilling.
  • Pour 2 cups vinegar and 2 cups water in the bottom of a large non-reactive roasting pan.
  • Sprinkle the rub on the ribs on both sides, and rub it in a little, then place the ribs on a rack in the roasting pan, and cover tightly with foil.
  • Roast in 225 degree oven for about 2 hours if you are going to move them to the smoker.   If not, let them go for 3 ½ hours. 
  • Remove the ribs from the oven, and reserve the liquid.  
  • Finish cooking your ribs on a medium hot grill for about 15 minutes on both sides, or
  • Place your wood chips in the lower pan of your smoker, following your smoker’s directions for placement.  Then add the 2 quarts water and 2 cups cider vinegar to the water pan, following your smoker’s directions.
  • Place the ribs on the racks in the smoker, cover and cook them another 2 hours at anywhere between 225 and 300.  Smokers are really notorious for not having accurate gauges.  When the ribs fall apart, they are done.  Just let them go at least two hours before you test them as you will increase the cooking time if you keep taking the cover off.
  • Add more wood chips through the little door in the smoker compartment when you don’t see any more smoke coming out of the smoker.
  • While the ribs are cooking, pour the reserved liquid into a small sauce pan and reduce.  If you want to make your BBQ sauce a little sweeter and thicker, add about one cup ketchup and simmer until thick.
  • We don’t baste our ribs in the sauce until they actually come off the heat.  Your choice, but the sugar in the baste will burn if your grill is too hot.  If you like that, go for it.

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