These are my favorite ribs to make. They are spicy, sticky, salty and I love messing my hands up with them. When the baby backs are on sale, we look for people to invite to dinner who won’t judge us while watching us trying to tear meat off of a bone with utmost delicacy. These would be perfect for the Superbowl or when you are looking for a winter BBQ. Here is why. You start these cooking in the oven for two hours and then finish them off on the grill for about twenty minutes. So, if you are just a little bit brave about the cold weather you can enjoy these little beauties. Another bonus is that there are only six ingredients. That’s it.
The thing that is a little bit of a pain about making pork ribs is that you need to take the membrane off of the back of the rack so that the ribs will absorb all of the marinade. This is an easy task if you can convince someone in your house to do it for you so that you can take pictures while he/she does it. You need to get a small paring knife and very carefully weasel it in between the first and second bone of the rib, try and pry the membrane loose there. When the opening is large enough, insert your first and second finger and start pulling the membrane. If you do it right, you can pull the membrane off in one piece. If you aren’t as lucky, you will have to keep loosening it with the paring knife and inserting your fingers and pulling. Go slow and pull. (I didn’t marry the man for his thumbs.)
You are going to mix the marinade and marinate the ribs for four to six hours. Keep the ribs in the fridge covered in plastic wrap.
When the ribs are finished marinating, you want to remove all the extra marinade so that it doesn’t burn and so that you can make a yummy sauce for the ribs. Place the extra marinade in a small saucepan and boil it for a couple of minutes to get all the germs out. (If you like extra sauce for dumping over rice, double the marinade recipe and cook it along with the extra marinade you removed from the ribs.)
Next step is tenting the ribs so that you can cook them in the oven for the first little bit and not freeze of your tush outside. Just lay two massive sheets of foil to form a cross. Put the ribs down lengthwise, fold over the two long sides, then tent up the foil around the short side of the ribs. If you cook more than one rack of ribs, repeat this for each rack of ribs.
Don’t roll the tent up too tight, the ribs need room to breathe in there.
Place the ribs on a baking pan in an oven at 275 degrees. Cook for about two and one half hours. I’d check on them at two hours to see where they are at. Ribs should be 190 degrees on an instant read digital thermometer.
Now is the fun part. Fire up that grill to high for a few minutes to heat up the grate. Reduce the heat to medium and set down the ribs, bone side facing the fire. While the bone side is cooking, use your reserved and boiled marinade. Spread it liberally over the meat side of the ribs. After ten minutes on the bone side, flip the ribs and cook for ten-fifteen more on the meat side until the sauce is all crusty and sticky.
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup soy sauce (gluten-free if you want this gluten-free)
- 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce (Not all Hoisin is gluten-free. Double check before you buy.)
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 2-3 slabs baby back park ribs
- Make the marinade: in a medium bowl stir together the marinade ingredients.
- Place the ribs in a single layer in a large roasting pan or baking sheet with sides. Pour the marinade over the ribs and massage the marinade into the meat. Cover the ribs with plastic wrap and refrigerate for four to six hours, turning the ribs occasionally.
- Use a spoon or rubber spatula and remove excess marinade. Reserve the marinade for later use.
- Tent the ribs in aluminum foil.
- Cook at 275 degrees for 2.5 hours or until an instant-read digital thermometer registers at 190 degrees. I'd check the ribs after two hours to see where they are at.
- Remove the ribs from oven. Carefully remove the foil, you don't want to get burned by the steam.
- Heat up your grill and cook the ribs bone side facing the fire for ten minutes. While the ribs are cooking, coat generously with the marinade on the meat side. After the ten minutes, flip the ribs and cook for an additional 10-15 minutes or until the marinade is nice and brown and sticky.
- Let the ribs rest for about ten minutes before slicing. Serve with any additional marinade for a dipping sauce.