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A brief detour: Dry rub for ribs

Posted by Rob Paveza

I have to admit: I'm excited. Tomorrow morning, I'll be putting my first ever dry rub on ribs. I've been looking forward to this because I've got a friend whose family is gluten-intolerant, and before he knew it, we always used to enjoy crock pot ribs with some store-bought K.C. Masterpiece honey barbecue sauce. Since they stopped eating gluten, we haven't really enjoyed ribs together. Not only that issue, but there's also the issue of actually just finding ribs when they're drowned in the sauce within the crock pot. So, for a while, I've been looking for a somewhat savory rub that I could make gluten-free that would be tasty. I think I've found it.

Apparently, John McCain has a fantastic dry rub that he uses. I'm going to adapt the recipe on that site a little bit: I have more ribs, and I think I can get a little bit more variety (and I'd like to have a little kick). So here are my ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder (I would have preferred cayenne pepper I think, but we didn't have any) - I'd like it to have just a little more punch than just black pepper would have
  • 1 orange, 2 lemons, and 1 lime, juiced

Otherwise, I'll follow the recipe as indicated: apply the rub all over the ribs, and then add the juice. Cook on low 8-10 hours.

I wanted to mix up the citrus a little. Citrus is generally interchangeable, but lime is my favorite citrus, and I wasn't willing to completely give up the sweetness of typical barbecue, so I thought the orange might be able to help add that a bit.

I will post some pictures and thoughts once they are cooked.

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