Nothing beats the smoky, spicy, and slightly sweet flavor of a perfectly executed dry rub on tender, oven-baked pork ribs. Today, we’re diving into our fail-proof pork ribs dry rub recipe oven enthusiasts will love. This recipe is your ticket to creating the most mouthwatering, fall-off-the-bone tender ribs right in your kitchen!
Why This Dry Rub Recipe Works
If trying your hand at oven-baked ribs for the first time or if this is your millionth time cooking pork ribs in the oven, this dry rub recipe is a game-changer Here’s why:
- Balanced Flavors: This dry rub combines the sweetness of brown sugar with the heat of chili powder and the savory notes of garlic and onion powder for a well-rounded flavor profile.
- Tender, Juicy Ribs: By slow roasting at a low temperature, the ribs remain moist and tender inside, while the dry rub forms a beautiful, flavorful crust on the outside.
- Indoor Convenience: No outdoor grill? No problem! This dry rub recipe is made for oven recipes so you can make delicious ribs in your oven, any time of year.
Featured Ingredients in this Pork Ribs Dry Rub Recipe
- Brown Sugar: Adds a molasses-like sweetness to the rub that not only enhances the flavor profile but also helps to form a tasty crust on the ribs during the baking process. It’s the cornerstone of our dry rub that caramelizes so beautifully!
- Chili Powder: Provides a deep, smoky flavor that creates a layered complexity, giving the ribs a hint of spice and earthy warmth.
- Dry Mustard: Introduces a tangy heat to the mix, enhancing the overall flavor balance and imparting a bit of sharpness that complements the sweetness from the brown sugar.
- Onion Powder: Contributes a savory, aromatic flavor that infuses the ribs with a subtle depth and a natural sweetness that is less pungent than fresh onions.
- Garlic Powder: Offers a mellow, yet profound garlic taste that permeates the ribs, adding an essential savory note that’s integral to many meat dishes.
- Black Pepper: Lends a slightly pungent, woodsy spice that enhances the other flavors and gives the ribs a mild heat and a hint of sharpness.
- Cayenne Pepper: Adds an extra kick of heat to the rub, providing a nice contrast to the sweetness of the brown sugar and deepening the overall flavor complexity of the ribs.
Easy Pork Ribs Dry Rub for Oven Recipes
- In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, chili powder, dry mustard, onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper, and cayenne pepper. Mix well and store in an airtight jar until ready to use. Feel free to double or triple the recipe too!
- To read my recipe for tender and flavorful oven-baked ribs using this dry rub, read the full blog post below! ENJOY!
The Best Oven-Baked Pork Ribs Recipe Using This Dry Rub
- 2 racks of pork ribs (baby back ribs or spare ribs): We’re focusing on baby back ribs or spare ribs. Both have their merits, but for this recipe, we love the meatiness and tenderness of baby back ribs.
- Prepared Pork Ribs Dry Rub: This homemade dry rub is easy to make and packs a flavorful punch! This spice mix gives our ribs their signature smoky, spicy flavor.
- 1 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce: While these ribs are packed with flavor on their own, feel free to finish them off with your favorite BBQ sauce for an extra saucy touch.
- Prepare the Ribs: Using a small knife or a butter knife, remove the thin membrane (or silver skin) from the back of the ribs. This tough membrane can prevent the dry rub from fully penetrating the meat so removing it helps the meat become more flavorful and makes the ribs easier to eat.
- Apply the Prepared Dry Rub: Pat the ribs dry with paper towels, then apply the dry rub liberally to both sides of the ribs, pressing it into the meat with your fingers.
- Wrap and Refrigerate: Wrap the spice-rubbed ribs tightly in aluminum foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour, or overnight if you have plenty of time. This step allows the flavors to really meld.
- Preheat the Oven: Preheat your oven to 275°F (135°C). This low temperature allows the ribs to slow cook and become tender without drying out.
- Bake the Ribs: Wrap each rack of ribs in two layers of aluminum foil, making sure they’re completely sealed. Place the wrapped ribs on a baking sheet and slow roast in the preheated oven for 3 to 4 hours, or until the meat is tender and nearly falling off the bone.
- Optional – Add BBQ Sauce: If you’re using BBQ sauce, remove the ribs from the oven after they’re done cooking, carefully open the foil, and brush the sauce onto the meaty side of the ribs. Broil the ribs for a few minutes until the sauce is bubbly and starting to caramelize. Watch them closely to prevent burning!
- Rest and Serve: Allow the ribs to rest for 10 minutes before cutting into individual ribs. Serve hot with extra BBQ sauce on the side, if you want. Enjoy your perfectly cooked, tender, and flavorful oven-baked ribs!
Note: Cooking times may vary depending on the size and thickness of your ribs. Always check for doneness by testing how easily the meat pulls away from the bones.
Tips and Tricks
- Removing the Membrane: The easiest way to remove the thin membrane from the back of the ribs is to use a small knife or butter knife. Start at one end, slide the knife under the membrane, then use a paper towel for a better grip and peel it off.
- Resting Time: For the best results, allow your dry rub to marinate on the ribs for at least an hour or even overnight
- Oven Temperature: Slow cooking at a low temperature is key for fall-off-the-bone tender ribs. Don’t be tempted to increase the heat; good things take time!
- Final Touch: A few minutes under the broiler at the end of the cooking time helps to caramelize the sugars in the rub and optional sauce, creating a tasty, slightly crisp exterior.
- Storage: If you end up with leftover dry rub (although we doubt you will!), store it in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. It’s great on other meats like pork chops or even chicken.
What to Serve with Your Dry-Rubbed Pork Ribs
Now that you’ve got your delicious ribs ready to serve, what do you pair them with? Classic sides like coleslaw, cornbread, or baked beans are always a good idea.
Or try something a little different, like a fresh, tangy apple slaw or some sweet potatoes for a nutritious twist. For a lighter option, a simple green salad also works well.
A Note on BBQ Sauce
While this dry rub imparts plenty of flavor to your ribs, adding a homemade BBQ sauce or your favorite store-bought variety towards the end of the cooking process can add another layer of flavor. Brush it on in the last few minutes of cooking for a sticky, sweet, and tangy finish.
What did you think of this pork ribs dry rub recipe? We’d love to hear your feedback, so feel free to leave a star rating or a comment below. And if you’re feeling particularly proud of your oven-baked, dry-rub pork ribs, share a photo on social media and tag us — we’d love to see it!
Variations for this Oven-Baked Ribs Recipe
- Salt Variations: Experiment with different types of salt in your spice rub. Sea salt can lend a distinct mineral-rich flavor, and smoked salts can enhance the smoky taste even further.
- Spice Rub Enhancements: Switch up the dry rub by adding different spices. Try incorporating smoked paprika for a deep, smoky flavor or cumin for an earthy touch. You could also explore other flavors like ground coriander or turmeric.
- Cooking Method Adjustments: Instead of wrapping the ribs in foil and baking them, try cooking them on a foil-lined baking sheet. This could give the ribs a slightly crispier exterior.
- Vegetable Additions: Add some vegetables to the sheet pan for a complete meal. Corn on the cob can be cooked right alongside the ribs about 40 minutes before the end time, giving you a delicious side that’s high in carbohydrates, fiber, vitamin C, and adds a sweet contrast to the savory ribs.
- Less Sodium: For those watching their sodium intake, consider reducing the amount of salt in the rub.
- BBQ Sauce Options: If you have a favorite barbecue sauce, brush it on the ribs after they’re cooked for an added tangy flavor. You could also experiment with different types of sauces like a spicy barbecue sauce, a mustard-based sauce, or even a fruity one for a different twist.
If you make this easy oven-baked pork ribs dry rub recipe, please drop a comment below! I’d LOVE to know what you think! Or take a picture and share it on Instagram by tagging @dwellbymichelle so I can repost it on my stories!
Frequently Asked Questions
How long should dry rub be on ribs before cooking?
For the best result using a pork ribs dry rub recipe oven style, you should allow the dry rub to sit on the ribs for at least 30 minutes before cooking. However, if you have a little more time, letting it sit for an hour or two will allow the flavors to penetrate more deeply into the meat.
Should you dry rub pork ribs overnight?
Yes, you can absolutely apply your own dry rub to the racks of ribs and let them sit overnight in the refrigerator. This is an easy recipe technique that allows the flavors to really infuse into the meat, leading to flavorful, tender barbecue ribs.
Can you dry rub ribs too long?
While it’s a great recipe idea to allow the ribs to sit with the dry rub overnight, it’s possible to leave them too long. After about 24 hours, the surface of the meat can become overly salty and start to dry out. So, for your next time cooking ribs, aim for that sweet spot of either a few hours or overnight.
How to make dry ribs juicy?
The best way to ensure your dry rub ribs stay juicy is to slow cook them in the oven or a slow cooker, if you prefer. The low, slow heat allows the fat in the ribs to render out, keeping the meat juicy and tender. You can also wrap the ribs in tin foil or parchment paper for the first part of the cooking process to help retain moisture.
Is it better to cook ribs at 225 or 250? (Answer 225)
For the most fork tender ribs, it’s better to cook ribs at 225 degrees Fahrenheit. This lower temperature ensures a slow, even cook, allowing the proteins to break down gradually without drying out the meat.
What is the secret to moist ribs?
The secret to moist, succulent ribs is low and slow cooking. Applying a dry rub and then cooking the ribs at a low temperature for a long time allows the flavors to penetrate deeply and the meat to become incredibly tender. Using a rib rack in the oven can also help with even cooking. Wrapping the ribs in foil for at least part of the cooking time can also help retain moisture.
What’s the best tenderizer for ribs?
A good dry rub often contains salt, which is a natural tenderizer. Additionally, slow cooking ribs at a low temperature is an excellent way to tenderize them. Some people also like to use a bit of liquid smoke for added flavor and tenderness.
How do you store dry rubbed ribs overnight?
After applying your dry rub, wrap your ribs tightly in tin foil or plastic wrap and place them in the refrigerator. They can be stored like this for up to 24 hours. Before cooking, let the ribs come to room temperature for about 30 minutes.
Do you put liquid in with ribs in the oven?
While not necessary, adding a bit of liquid (like apple juice or vinegar) to the pan before wrapping the ribs in foil can help keep them moist during cooking. This is especially useful when making St. Louis style ribs or when using a special dry rub that might include sugar, which could burn without some moisture. However, for dry rub oven ribs, it’s usually enough to simply wrap the ribs well in foil.
Looking for More Easy Pork Recipes?
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- How to Cook Boneless Pork Ribs in the Oven Fast
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- How to Cook Boudin (3 Ways to Cook The Cajun Sausage!)
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- 5 Best Store Bought Dry Rub for Ribs & How to Use Them
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