If you love baby back ribs but don’t love standing outside in the heat for several hours cooking them or don’t have a grill, this easy recipe for the Best Oven-Baked Baby Back Ribs is for you! These baked baby back ribs are mouthwateringly juicy, fall off the bone tender and when slathered with tangy barbecue sauce, just plain finger-lickin’ good!
Folks in the South take their barbecue very seriously, and there are countless articles and reviews of different barbecue restaurants and barbecue contests to decide which barbecue is the best, but ultimately any selection is a highly personal and subjective matter. In other words, what is a killer barbecue sauce, baby back ribs rub, or baby back ribs recipe for one person is not necessarily another person’s favorite and the debate about the merits of wet vs dry baby back ribs goes on and on.
Barbecue aficionados live, eat and breathe the stuff. There is even a Florida BBQ Association whose mission is to promote, through education, family-friendly fellowship, and competition the uniquely American tradition of barbequing meat over natural wood or charcoal-fired heat and smoke.
I’m not going to tell you that these oven cooked baby back ribs will rival baby back ribs that are smoked low and slow for hours on a grill, but what I will tell you is that my son who is a barbecue snob pronounced them delicious and proceeded to devour a rack in one sitting. And if you are one of those folks like him, well, you will just have to try this recipe to become a believer. The convenience of being able to cook baby back ribs in the oven instead of standing over a hot grill on a hot summer day wins every time in my book!
Unfortunately, one thing that you don’t get with this baby back ribs recipe is the smokey barbecue flavor, but these oven baby back ribs are succulent and delicious in their own way. If you really can’t live without the smoky taste, you can always just add a small amount of liquid smoke, smoked paprika or smoked salt to the barbecue sauce or purchase barbecue sauce with a hickory smoke flavor.
One other thing that sets this delicious oven cooked baby back ribs recipe apart, is the tantalizing and spicy dry rub for baby back ribs or dry rub for ribs in the oven! This special baby back ribs dry rub lends just the right balance of sweet and spicy flavor and makes them ever so flavorful.
In case you are wondering, baby back ribs do not come from baby pigs! They are only called baby back ribs because they are shorter in comparison to regular spareribs and St Louis style ribs. I think baby back pork ribs are the best ribs for grilling, but again everyone has their own preference.
Looking for sides to serve with your Baby Back Ribs? Check out these delicious options: Southern Green Beans and New Potatoes, Southern Potato Salad, and Southern Style Crispy Onion Rings. Need even more ideas, click here to see all of my side dish recipes.
The ingredients you will need to make the Best Oven-Baked Baby Back Ribs and Dry Rub include, baby back ribs, brown sugar, chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, onion powder, salt, ground black pepper and whatever commercially prepared barbecue sauce you like.
How to Make the Best Oven-Baked Baby Back Ribs and Dry Rub!
When you are ready to prepare the oven cooked baby back ribs, preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
Remove the membrane from the back of the rack of baby back ribs by using a small paring knife to pry up a corner of the membrane. Then grab the membrane with a paper towel and peel it off down the length of the ribs. You can also ask your butcher to do this step for you.
To make the baby back ribs dry rub, combine all dry rub ingredients in a small bowl.
Sprinkle the baby back ribs dry rub liberally all over the front and back of the ribs and gently rub it in.
For the best flavor, let the ribs sit with the baby back ribs dry rub on them for at least 30 minutes, or you can refrigerate them and let them sit for up to 24 hours.
When ready to cook the baby back ribs in the oven, wrap them in heavy duty aluminum foil and place them on a baking sheet with a rim. Place them in the oven and cook for 1 1/2 hours or until the meat starts pulling away from the bone and is tender.
When the ribs are done, open the foil packet completely and brush on your favorite barbecue sauce. Turn up the heat to 350 degrees and let the ribs cook for an additional 30 minutes.
Serve immediately with plenty of napkins!
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