Once you make these easy oven-baked barbecue ribs you will not want to make baked ribs any other way again. These are tender and smoky with flavor so complex you’ll be hard-pressed to eat the whole rack of ribs at one setting.
Most baked ribs recipes call for a sweet heavy handed sauce that literally makes the ribs simply a vessel for enjoying the sauce. However, this recipe calls for no sauce; instead a seriously dope dry rub is used for flavor and texture.
The dry rub is a unique mixture of spices which include normal ones like salt, pepper, and paprika combined with a few surprises like cocoa powder and Korean chili flakes.
Al Green's "I'm Glad You're Mine" is laid back but takes you to church with that hardcore organ sound. These baked ribs hit you the same way. Each bite is damn near a spiritual experience. There is little work in making these but the flavor experience is a mighty one.
Oven Baked Ribs Ingredients
- Slab of Baby Back Ribs
- Smoked Sea Salt
- Garlic Powder
- Korean Chili Flakes
- Cocoa Powder
- Brown Sugar
How To Cook Baby Back Ribs in the Oven
I’m some sort of a purist when it comes to barbecue ribs. Boiling is not even a consideration for me and I try not to shame those who boil ribs and brag about fall off the bone ribs.
Prepare the Rub
Mix all the rub ingredients in a mixing bowl. If the brown sugar clumps up just rib it between your thumb and middle + index fingers. Set aside for at least 30 minutes.
Bake The Ribs
When ready to cook, pre-heat oven to 225 degrees.
Rub the ribs generously with the rib rub.
Wrap the ribs with aluminum foil tightly. Place rib racks on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 2 hours.
Remove ribs from the oven and unwrap. Discard the foil and then place unwrapped and uncovered ribs into the oven to bake another 1 ½ hours.
Remove the ribs and change the oven settings to broil (about 450 degrees). Sprinkle the ribs with another layer of the rub and broil 2-4 minutes.
Remove and let cool. Serve and enjoy.
Cooking Considerations and Tips for Baking Ribs
Remove the membrane from the ribs if that’s your preference. I’ve enjoyed ribs with and without the thin membrane removed, but can honestly say I’m indifferent on that matter.
I prefer half racks as they’re easier to handle to I always cut them in half before baking.
Be generous with the rub. Add a nice layer on top to get that nice deep crust.
Use quality smoked paprika and smoked sea salt. These are key for replicating that deep smoke in a natural way.
Substitute Korean chili flakes with a few chili pepper flakes but not too much as you’re not really going for spicy high heat. Taste your rub first before using on the ribs, as you’ll want to adjust for taste.
Be careful with the broil step. Depending on how much brown sugar you’re applying high temps can lead to burning.
Trust me you will NOT Need a sauce for these ribs. The dry rub is all that and then some!
More Rib Recipes
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- 1 slab Baby Back Ribs
- 1 tsp Smoked Paprika
- 1 tbsp Brown Sugar
- ½ tsp Garlic Powder
- 1 tsp Black Pepper
- ½ tsp Cocao Powder
- ¼ tsp Cinnamon
- 1 tsp Kosher Salt
- ½ tsp Smoked Sea Salt
- 1 tsp Korean Chili Flakes or ¼ tsp cayene
Prepare the Rub
- Mix all the rub ingredients in a mixing bowl. If the brown sugar clumps up just rib it between your thumb and middle + index fingers. Set aside for at least 30 minutes.
Bake the Ribs
- When ready to cook, pre-heat oven to 225 degrees.
- Rub the ribs generously with the dry spice mix.
- Wrap the ribs with aluminum foil tightly. Place rib racks on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 2 hours.
- Remove ribs from the oven and unwrap. Discard the foil and then place unwrapped and uncovered ribs into the oven to bake another 1 ½ hours.
- Remove the ribs and change the oven settings to broil (about 450 degrees). Sprinkle the ribs with another layer of the rub and broil 2-4 minutes.
- Remove and let cool. Serve and enjoy.