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Spice-Rubbed Ribs
Nathan Congleton / TODAY
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(102 rated)
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This is a tried and true recipe that we use all the time at our family dinner nights. Sometimes we cook these on the smoker and sometimes we do it in the oven. They turn out good every time.

Technique tip: Bake ribs for tenderness, and then grill them to give them a smoky flavor.


  • Spice mix

    • 5 tablespoons onion powder
    • 5 tablespoons garlic powder
    • 10 tablespoons smoked paprika
    • 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
    • 1 tablespoon salt
    • 5 tablespoons mustard powder
  • Ribs

    • 4 to 5 pounds pork loin back ribs (also called baby back ribs)
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • Barbecue sauce, for brushing


1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. In a small bowl, combine all the spice mix ingredients and stir to combine thoroughly.

3. Rub the spice mix onto both sides of the ribs until well coated. Then, rub them with the brown sugar.

4. Place ribs on a cookie sheet and cover with foil. Bake ribs for 2-2½ hours or until tender.

5. Prepare a charcoal grill and bring to medium heat. Sprinkle damp wood chips over the coals.

6. Remove ribs from oven and place on the grill rack directly over the coals. Cover and cook for 10 minutes or until ribs are browned. Turn once and brush occasionally with your favorite barbecue sauce.