Chef’s Secrets: Oven-Baked Ribs

I know, there’s no substitute for smoked ribs, cooked low and slow for hours, then finished on a hot grill for some yummy char. But I’ve been in enough kitchens to have picked up some secrets about how restaurants without a grill (but with standards high enough to warrant cooking meat in the most legit way possible without actually barbecuing) manage to turn out shockingly delicious ribs.

And when you live in the middle of a city and don’t have room to store a grill, I’ve found a trick to using your oven to make what my boyfriend calls “majestic” ribs.

First: Flavor sticks – I get mine from Seasoning Stix, which tasted amazing. Shove them in  Then, add the dry rub. Pack it on, both sides because you want your meat to have flavor everywhere, right?



Next: Wrap the ribs up in foil and store in fridge for a few hours (or overnight, but that’s about the max time before things get too strongly seasoned).


Then: Pre-heat oven to 450F. Put ribs in, covered/wrapped loosely in foil but NOT SEALED. Bake for about 30 minutes.

And then: Uncover, apply light glaze of your favorite BBQ sauce, leave uncovered and bake at 350F until done and meat is receding from bones. Let rest for about 10 minutes before cutting to allow juices to redistribute evenly.



1/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 tbsp. chili powder
2 tsp. onion powder
2 tsp. smoked paprika (not regular, you need deeper flavor than that)
1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1. Combine all ingredients. If going sugar-free, double all the other stuff for a less sweet but still nicely balanced taste.
2. Get the dry rub all over the meat. Like, everywhere.
3. Cook according to your recipe.



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