The key to great BBQ ribs is the rub used to coat the ribs before grilling. One of my favorite rubs includes ground cumin, chili powder, paprika, onion, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Before I rub the ribs, I make sure to remove the skin-like membrane from the bottom. I set the grill to 250°F and grill the ribs for 4 hours. Another important thing is to resist the temptation of opening the grill to check on the ribs, this creates a drastic temperature change and will cause you to lose some flavor.
It's good to know some fun lingo before entering into a rib-cooking adventure. Adding BBQ sauce to the ribs early in the process will ruin them, as the sauce is made up of sugar and this can cause the ribs to burn (this goes for all grilling, never use sauce as part of a marinade or rub). This is where some of that lingo comes in, I add a “mop” or a “baste” which is a thin BBQ sauce, mostly made of vinegar or water. I don’t add BBQ sauce until the last half hour of grilling. Remember be patient and keep your eye on the prize. The end result will be biting into the most tender and delicious ribs you have ever tasted and the proof is in the picture. So don’t be scared to give this recipe (below) a try, no matter how intimidating it may seem!
- Preheat grill to 250°, keeping your burners on low and the lid shut should do the trick.
- Combine 1 tablespoon of ground cumin, chili powder, and paprika in a small bowl. Add salt, pepper, onion, and garlic powder to taste.
- Trim the skin-like membrane from each rack of ribs by running a sharp knife between the membrane and each rib.
- Sprinkle the ribs with the rub take care to not rub the spices into them too much.
- Capture drippings from the ribs on aluminum foil on the lower rack. Place the ribs on the top rack and grill the ribs for 4 hours, lifting the lid minimally to baste with the drippings and any vinegar or water based sauce.
- With a half hour left, brush the ribs with barbecue sauce.
- Cut the ribs individually, and enjoy!