I admit, I have never grilled a rack of ribs. There, I said it. I have consumed many, helped with the side dishes, cut them even, but I figured it was time I stepped up and grilled a rack of ribs all by myself. It seems challenging but an hour or so of research and planning got my head in the game and ready to do it.
After reading various methods for grilling, sans 6 hours of cook time, or a smoker, I opted to try the Weber.com tip of foil-packing the ribs to cook them first.
I started with a 2 lb slab of baby back ribs from my local butcher (yum!) that I rubbed with a little garlic powder, Real Salt, and pepper.
I set my grill to medium heat and began to wrap my ribs. You want to make a fully closed pack so I doubled the foil over the ribs and rolled all the sides and ends tightly.
Place in direct heat on the grill, close and set a timer for 15 minutes.
While your ribs are cooking, mix together:
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/3 cup maple syrup,
- tomato paste (small can)
- 1 to 2 tbsp of your favorite Teeny Tiny Spice
I chose Ethopian Berbere. I love the flavor, and the kick of spice it has cannot be topped (it’s become a fast favorite in this house.) I used 1 tbsp because I wanted the flavor, a little bit of heat, but I also wanted to maintain some of the flavor from the vinegar and syrup.
Who knew BBQ sauce could be this easy?
Now, when the first 15 minutes is up CAREFULLY flip the rack of ribs (the whole foil pack) without puncturing the foil, close the lid and cook another 15 minutes. Do this two more times, until ribs have cooked for an hour total. Remove from grill and rest them for 10 minutes.
Carefully remove the foil and place ribs directly on the grill.
Start slathering the meat with your sauce, however much you prefer. Make sure to cover all ends, edges, creases, etc.
Cook for about 5-10 minutes more on each side with the sauce on. I brushed the sauce on multiple times during this final cooking as I love a thick sauce, especially one that begins to crisp up a bit when cooked on the fire.
Don’t forget to flip and coat (see the nice crispy edges I’m getting here? The maple syrup reduces bit and makes a nice “crust”)
After your ribs look good and crispy, carefully remove from the grill and dig in.
I was very nervous to make these, honestly, but they came out PERFECTLY. They were insanely tender, and had little bits of fattier meat that literally melted in my mouth. The sauce was slightly sweet with just enough kick- needless to say I had some very happy diners.
Now go grab your favorite spice and get to grilling! If you give these a try, let me know how they work out for you- I’d love to hear how they turn out!