Rib Rub Award Winning Easy Recipe

Award winning rib rub recipe

About Flavoring Your Ribs and Why Going Dry is Superior

While a rib is nothing but meat on a bone, meat, especially pork, will only give you so much flavor. For really stellar ribs, you need to go at least one step beyond trimming the membrane and cooking them; you need to add your own flavors. The good news is that while there is no one way to go about adding flavor to a rack of ribs, not all of those ways are equally effective.

  • Marinade. This would be the wet approach to rib flavor-enhancement. Marinades offer flavor while also tenderizing meat prior to cooking by way of an enzymatic reaction; pineapple, whether its juice or some slices, is a good example of such an enzyme. Two problems with cooking marinated ribs is that the marinade can be rather gloppy, increasing the cooking time, and there is a chance that the sauce could cause a flare-up when reacting with the heat.
  • Apply BBQ Sauce after cooking. This is the method professed by people who are either lazy or in a crunch for time. No matter how good the sauce is, it will not cling to the ribs very well; a properly sauced rib is one that has where its sauce was applied in the last few minutes of cooking time and allowed to caramelize onto the meat.
  • Dry Rub. Of the three options covered here, a dry rub is different in that it is, well, dry; there is no need to worry about moisture with a dry rub. A dry rub takes very little prep work to make, can go onto the ribs minutes before you add them to the smoker and tenderizes the meat by osmosis-drawing out the moisture and slipping in the flavors of the many herbs, spices and seasonings that go into a proper smoker rub.

A Step-By-Step Guide to Making Your Rib Rub Award Winning

As there is no one single, solitary standard recipe for the best dry rub for ribs, this section actually contains several different rub recipes, taking inspiration from archetypes like Memphis rib rub and Monstreal rub and covering recipes from award winning baby back rib dry rub recipe to the simplest dry rub for ribs. The fact that there are multiple approaches also means that any of you concerned cooks can take any allergies or flavor preferences into account when you decide to follow the recipe for one of the rub blends or just use them as a starting point for your own personal culinary expression. It should also be noted that these recipes are meat agnostic, you are feel free to try them with either beef or pork ribs without any issue.

Rib Rub Recipe #1


  • Paprika, 3/4 cup
  • Sugar, white, 1/2 cup
  • Garlic, granulated, 1/4 cup
  • Sugar, brown, 1/8 cup
  • Powder, chili, 2 tbsp
  • Salt, 2 tbsp
  • Pepper, cayenne, 1 tbsp
  • Cumin, 1 tbsp
  • Pepper, black, 1 tbsp
  • Oregano, 2 tsp
  • Powder, onion, 2 tsp
  • Thyme, 1 tsp
Flavor the ribs

Rib Rub Recipe #2: “The Good Stuff”


  • Sugar, brown, 1/4 cup
  • Salt, kosher, 2 tsp
  • Pepper, black, 2 tsp
  • Paprika, smoked, 2 tsp
  • Powder, garlic, 1 tsp
  • Powder, onion, 1 tsp
  • Mustard, ground, 1 tsp
  • Cinnamon, 1/2 tsp
  • Salt, celery, 1/2 tsp
  • Pepper, cayenne, 1/4 tsp

Notes: Break up any clumps with either a whisk or a fork. If kept within an airtight container and out of direct light, this rub is good for up to a month.

Rib Rub Recipe #3


  • Cumin, 1 tbsp
  • Paprika, 1 tbsp
  • Garlic, granulated, 1 tbsp
  • Onion, granulated, 1 tbsp
  • Powder, chili, 1 tbsp
  • Sugar, brown, 1 tbsp
  • Salt, kosher, 2 tbsp
  • Pepper, cayenne, 1 tsp
  • Pepper, black, 1 tsp
  • Pepper, white, 1 tsp

Baby Back Rib Rub Recipe #4


  • Paprika, sweet, 1/4 cup
  • Sugar, brown, dark, 3 tbsp
  • Pepper, 2 tbsp
  • Powder, chili, 1 tbsp
  • Powder, garlic, 2 tsp
  • Mustard, dry, 2 tsp
  • Salt, celery, 2 tsp
  • Salt, kosher, 1 tsp
  • Pepper, cayenne, 1 tsp

Notes: This particular rub is sufficient enough for up to two racks of baby-backs weighing between 6 to 8 pounds. Kept in an airtight container and away from any direct light, it will keep for up to half a year.

Smoked Ribs Rub Recipe #5: The Super Simple Approach


  • Sugar, brown, 3 tbsp
  • Paprika, 1.5 tbsp
  • Salt, 1.5 tbsp
  • Pepper, black, 1.5 tbsp
  • Powder, garlic, 1 tsp

While most of our recipes cover how to go about making the featured dish, the only equipment you will need to make any of these particular recipes is a modest-sized bowl to pool all of the ingredients into. Sure, you could use a whisk, but it feels more appropriate to use a spoon or even just your hands to evenly distribute the various substances involved. Remember that you are going to be cooking ribs, a food that no one is supposed to finish eating without getting some on their fingers.

In Conclusion

This is an article about making stellar ribs using the most effective means of adding flavor to that particular cut of meat, the dry rub. As it may have become obvious from looking over these five different recipes, a rub can be as simple or as complex as you make it, so long as it features a few core ingredients. A proper rub needs the following.

  • Salt. Salt is a staple of rubs for more reasons than just flavor. Salt also tenderizes the meat and opens it up to accept the various other flavors carried within the rub. While you can supplement your rub with multiple types of salt, it is important that you make your primary salt, the one you use the most of, a variety with a coarse texture; this is why kosher salt is so common in rub recipes.
  • Sugar. Sugar serves a dual purpose of flavoring and helping to induce caramelization, allowing the various flavors to really saturate and cling to the meat.
  • Pepper. Pepper is is a staple of rubs if only because it adds an extra dimension of flavor to anything salt gets added to. In essence, pepper is a staple of rib rubs by association.
  • Spices/Seasonings. This is the section where you have the most freedom to play and experiment with your personal rub. Several of the names found on a common spice rack show up in one or more rub recipes. Feel free to get crazy here and even look into the foreign food section for ideas.
Add flavor to the ribs

So there you have it, everything an enterprising pitmaster-to-be needs to know when it comes to providing people with a delicious platter of lip-smacking, drool-inducing, flavorful ribs and taking your ribs recipe to the next level. Check out your spice rack and get cooking!

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