BBQ spare ribs



  • 6 spare ribs

  • Smoking chips

  • 200ml apple juice, unsweetened

For the rib rub:

  • 3 tbsp brown sugar

  • 1½ tbsp paprika

  • 1½ tbsp salt

  • 1½ tbsp black pepper

  • 1 tsp garlic powder

For the BBQ sauce:

  • 500 ml tomato ketchup

  • 110 g brown sugar

  • ½ cup of honey

  • 2 tbsp vinegar

  • 2 tbsp mustard

  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

  • 2 tsp onion powder

  • 1 tsp garlic powder

  • 1 tsp sea salt


1. Remove the spare ribs from the silver skin on the bone side and trim off any excess fat. Lightly score the remaining skin on the underside, above each bone, so that the rib meat can be removed more easily from the bone later. Combine the rib rub ingredients in a bowl and sprinkle over the spare ribs. Wrap the spare ribs in cling film and marinate in the fridge over night.

2. Soak your smoking chips in water for around 30 mins. While they're soaking set up your BBQ for indirect barbecuing, with charcoal or burners lit at the sides of the BBQ and no direct heat in the middle. Close the lid and heat the BBQ to 130°C.

3. Carefully place the soaked wood chips over the hot charcoal, or within a foil drip pan over one of the burners of a gas BBQ. Unwrap the spare ribs from the cling film and place in the middle of the grill, with the meat side facing downwards, and leave to barbecue indirectly for 45 mins before turning and cooking for a further 30-45 mins.

Top tip:

If all of the spare ribs won't fit in the middle of the grill you can pile 3 spare ribs on top of each other, as long as you “restack” them every 30 mins.

4. Take the spare ribs off the grill and carefully wrap up the racks individually in aluminium foil; when doing so, put 4-5 tbsp of apple juice into each foil parcel. Indirectly barbecue the spare ribs in the aluminium foil for another 1½ hours, gradually increasing the temperature to 150°C so that the apple juice starts to simmer.

5. Combine the barbecue sauce ingredients together in a saucepan, briefly bring to the boil and then leave to simmer for 20 mins - stirring regularly.

6. Take the spare ribs out of the aluminium foil and brush with a thin layer of barbecue sauce. Indirectly barbecue for another 60 mins, brushing with more barbecue sauce every now and then.

7. Serve with coleslaw, potatoes or a leafy green salad.

Here's what you'll need:

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