Ribs are a classic for summer grilling, and this recipe for Brown Sugar Applewood Ribs is a keeper! Just don’t expect any leftovers!
Every summer, my wife’s family has a huge picnic down in Maryland. As it’s Maryland, one night involves lots and lots of blue crabs. But the next day involves a huge potluck featuring all sorts of pasta salads, appetizers and other summer deliciousness.
But the real star of the show that 2nd day is the sheer volume and variety of smoked meats that Laura’s uncle makes. He has no less than 3 smokers/grills, and he has all of ’em going bright and early in the morning so that we have plenty of ribs, smoked chicken and smoked sweet potatoes for the picnic. There’s nothing quite like standing outside early on a summer morning with a mug of coffee while you watch the smokers and grills chug away!
As I love to grill, I’ve moved into the role of assistant grill master for the family picnic. Trust me…this isn’t a role you take lightly! There will be 25-30 hungry people showing up mid-morning, and those ribs better be fallin’ off the bone and delicious by noon! In preparation for this year’s picnic, we invited some friends over last weekend and grilled up a batch of these Brown Sugar Applewood Ribs.
I know ribs are one of those mysterious and often-avoided items on the grill. Sure, they take some time, but most of that time is inactive. For these Brown Sugar Applewood Ribs, I used a recipe created by Pitmaster Chris Lilly (of Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q) that he developed for Kingsford® Charcoal. These ribs start with a nice, flavorful rub and then finish with a generous coating of Kingsford’s® new Brown Sugar Applewood Sauce. Let me tell ya–these ribs were amazing! Laura proclaimed this recipe a winner, and she said they’re good enough to make again for this year’s family picnic down in Maryland. That’s a high standard!
The brown sugar rub creates a nice, crispy crust on the outside of these ribs while the meat itself stays moist and juicy thanks to a brown sugar liquid seasoning that goes on about an hour before the ribs are done. These ribs literally fall off the bone! I had 5 hungry people and 2 hungry dogs circling the grill last weekend as I was finishing up these ribs. I still had to snap these photos, so I made everyone wait patiently for a few extra minutes. I think these were the fastest pictures I’ve ever taken!
The key to these ribs is the generous coating of Kingsford’s® new Brown Sugar Applewood Sauce that gets brushed on at the very end. Laura is pretty picky when it comes to BBQ sauces, and she give this one a 2-thumbs up. In fact, everyone at the table gave this sauce a 2-thumbs up…so that makes these Brown Sugar Applewood Ribs a 10-thumbs up recipe!
Kingsford® has been making charcoal since 1920, and they’ve recently launched their very first line of sauces and rubs. Our group of friends sampled all 3 new flavors (Brown Sugar Applewood BBQ Sauce, Honey Jalapeno Mesquite BBQ Sauce and Original Smoked Hickory BBQ Sauce), and all 3 received high ratings! Which one of these new Kingsford® sauces would you want to try first?
I’m personally thinking that Honey Jalapeno Mesquite BBQ Sauce will be excellent brushed on smoked chicken…so that might have to be on our weekend plans this weekend! Have a great weekend everyone, and make sure to pull that grill out!
Brown Sugar Applewood Ribs
For the Dry Rub
- ¼ cup dark brown sugar
- 2 Tbsp garlic salt
- 4 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp black pepper
- ½ tsp celery salt
- ¼ tsp red pepper
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
For the Ribs
- 2 slabs spare ribs or baby back ribs
- 1½ cups Kingsford® Brown Sugar Applewood Sauce
For the Liquid Seasoning
- ½ cup apple cider
- ½ cup brown sugar
For the Ribs
- In a small bowl, combine the dry rub ingredients and mix well. Generously apply the dry rub to both sides of the ribs.
- Build a charcoal fire for indirect cooking using Kingsford® Charcoal by situating the coals on only one side of the grill, leaving the other side void. Preheat the grill to 250°F.
- Place the ribs over the void side of the grill, close the lid and cook the ribs for 2 hours 15 minutes.
- Remove the ribs from the grill. Place each rack of ribs meat-side down on its own doubled aluminum foil square. The foil should be large enough to completely wrap each rack.
- In a small bowl, mix the apple cider and brown sugar. Pour half of the liquid over each slab. At the same time, tightly wrap and seal each rack of ribs with aluminum foil. Place the wrapped ribs back over the void side of the grill for 1 hour.
- Remove the ribs from the grill, unwrap each rack of ribs and discard foil. Brush both sides of the ribs with Kingsford® Brown Sugar Applewood Sauce, and place the ribs back on the grill for 5 minutes, or until sauce caramelizes. Remove from the grill, cut, and serve warm.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Kingsford. The opinions and text are all mine.