You don't need a smoker or grill to make great barbecued ribs. You can get the same delicious barbecue flavor by making them in your oven using this Easy Oven Baby Back Barbecue Ribs recipe.
While it takes a bit of time for them to cook, actual hands-on time is short. You can also throw the ribs on the grill to crisp and add a little char at the end of cooking, but the broiler in the oven works just as well.
Before cooking, prep the baby back ribs by removing the silverskin along the rib side. Removing that bit of membrane allows flavors to absorb into the meat and it improves the mouth feel when eating the ribs. To do it, slide a Boning Knife under the silverskin and slowly begin to cut it away. Once you get it started you can grab the loose end with a paper towel to give yourself a good grip and then pull off the rest. If it doesn't go easily continue to work the Boning Knife down the skin to remove it.
Once the ribs are prepped, coat them with a dry rub, cook them low and slow, and finished with a barbecue sauce that is both tangy and sweet. The rub infuses the meat with flavor and the long cooking time makes the meat fall-off-the-bone tender.
Oven Baby Back Barbecue Ribs
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon Kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
- 2 slices of bacon, chopped
- 1/2 whole onion
- 3 gloves of garlic, smashed
- 2 cups ketchup
- 1 cup peach preserves
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 2 tablespoons red or white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground paprika
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 racks baby back ribs (silverskin removed, see above)
- Mix together the rub ingredients and rub on both sides of the ribs. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours.
- Preheat oven to 300°F. Cover the ribs tightly with foil and bake for 2 to 2 1/2 hours.
- While ribs are baking, prepare the sauce. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the chopped bacon and cook slowly for 3-4 minutes to render the fat and add a smoky taste to the sauce. Add the onion and garlic and cook slowly for about 5 minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients, stir and turn the heat to low. Cook slowly for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the onion, garlic and thyme from the sauce. Put some of the sauce in a bowl for basting and reserve the rest for serving.
- At the end of the baking time for the ribs, remove the foil and baste both sides of the ribs with sauce, put back in the oven and cook for 10-15 minutes. Baste again and cook 10 more minutes. Baste one last time and cook 10 minutes. Remove ribs from the oven.
- Preheat the broiler for 5 minutes and broil the ribs, basting with the sauce. Broil for about 5 minutes on each side or until they become crisp and charred.
- To serve, cut the ribs between the bones and serve with the reserved sauce.