St. Louis Style Ribs
dry mustard, paprika, cayenne pepper, spareribs, chicken broth, onion, garlic, vegetable oil, chili powder, ketchup, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, yellow mustard, Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke
Barbecue & Grilling, Main Event
4 hours 5 minutes
This recipe starts with our homemade barbecue sauce and involves some seriously yummy pork spareribs in the classic St. Louis style of maximizing flavor and meaty goodness. You and all your guests will be licking your fingers and running back for more.
To save time, these ribs can be baked up to 3 days in advance of serving. By making them ahead of time, the flavor will be more developed as it sets into the meat, and the cold ribs will hold together better on the grill as they heat through.
1 medium onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
¼ cup vegetable oil
5 teaspoons chili powder
½ teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon salt
1–2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 pinch cayenne pepper
2 cups ketchup
1 cup brown sugar, packed
¼ cup apple cider vinegar or red wine vinegar
⅓ cup yellow mustard
¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
3 teaspoon liquid smoke (optional)
2 ½ tablespoons sea salt
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon paprika
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 pounds St. Louis style pork spareribs* (4 racks)
Low-sodium chicken broth (optional)
1 ½ cups barbecue sauce (see above)
To Make BBQ Sauce
Heat oil over medium heat; add in onion and sauté for about 3 minutes, then add in garlic and sauté for 2 more minutes.
Add in chili powder, paprika, cayenne, salt, and black pepper. Stir for 1 minute.
Add in all remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil and stir with a wooden spoon to combine.
Reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour. Do not cover the pot or the texture and flavor will be affected (if you have a splatter screen, then use that to cover the pot).
Cool to room temperature*.
To Make St Louis Style Ribs
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F or get that smoker out!
Combine the first five ingredients in a small bowl.
Place each rack of ribs on a double layer of foil and sprinkle with dry rub from Step 2.
Wrap racks individually and divide between two baking sheets.
Bake ribs until very tender but not falling apart, about 3 hours.
Carefully unwrap ribs. Reserve juices in a 4-cup heat proof measuring cup.
Let ribs cool completely.
Build a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill, or heat a gas grill to high.
Add broth or water to rib juices, if needed, to measure 1 ½ cups.
Whisk your homemade barbecue sauce into the dripping/broth mixture.
Grill ribs, basting with barbecue sauce mixture and turning frequently, until lacquered and charred in places and heated through, about 7–10 minutes.
Transfer to a cutting board and cut between ribs to separate. Serve with additional barbecue sauce.
Pro Tip 1:
You can also make this recipe using baby back ribs rather than spareribs. If you do use baby back, you’ll only bake the ribs in the oven for about 2 hours in Step 5.
Pro Tip 2:
We recommend covering the barbecue sauce and refrigerating for 24 hours or more before using.