Baby Back Ribs with Cola Barbecue Sauce

If you stay up to date with my Instagram, then you saw me sharing the photos of these ribs on my feed and in my InstaStories. When I posted it on Instagram it was intended for Father’s Day, but come-on—ribs go well with any occasion, especially summer.

A few of you asked for the recipe, so I’m sharing it here. Needless to say, start with a good set of rib meat. Next up, grab a dry rub and wet —yes, you need both. Now this is where you need to plan ahead – ribs need to be cooked nice and slow.

For the recipe, I’m using one from Weber. They are always reliable and I’m a big fan of their new cookbook – it has detailed written and photo instructions for how to do ribs like this. (Small note: this is not a sponsored post, but I do work with Weber.)

One word of caution about this recipe that the book doesn’t include – the ribs go fast, so either be prepared to make a big batch or make sure there are plenty of sides to go with it.

That’s it – done and done. Enjoy the ribs and all the rest of what summer has to offer.

Yield: Serves 4 - 6

Baby Back Ribs with Cola Barbecue Sauce

Baby Back Ribs with Cola Barbecue Sauce

Ingredients

  • DRY RUB
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 racks baby back ribs, each about 3 pounds
  • 2 tablespoons yellow mustard
  • BASTING MIXTURE
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • COLA BARBECUE SAUCE
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 cup cola
  • 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 tablespoons yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon prepared chili powder

Instructions

  1. In a small bow mix together all the dry rub ingredients. Set aside 2 teaspoons for the basing mixture.
  2. Trim any excess fat from the ribs. Using a dull knife, slide the tip under the membrane covering the back of each rib rack. Lift and loosen the membrane until you can pry it up. then grab a corner of it with a paper towel or your fingers and pull it off.
  3. Lightly coat the ribs evenly with the mustard and then season them all over with the rub. The mustard will help the seasoning to stick to the meat. Let the ribs stand at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour before cooking.
  4. Meanwhile, prepare the a grill of smoker for indirect cooking over very low heat (250 to 350 degree F). Melt the butter with the vinegar in a small sauce pan or skillet over low heat on the stove and stir in the reserved 2 teaspoons rub. Set aside off the heat for basting.
  5. Brush the cooking grates clean. Add the wood chunks to the coals (or drain and add wood chips to the grill) and close the lid. When smoke appears grill the ribs flat, bone side down, over indirect very low heat, with the lid closed, for 1 1/2 hours. During that time maintain the temperature between 250 and 300 F.
  6. Meanwhile, combine the sauce ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a gentle boil over medium-high heat on the stove, stirring often. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the mixture thickens to a consistency that coats the back of a spoon, 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. You should have about 1 1/2 cups sauce.
  7. When the rib have cooked for 1 1/2 hours, swap the positions of the racks for even cooking. Lightly baste both sides of the ribs with the butter mixture. Continue cooking, bone side down, over indirect very low heat, with the lid closed, for 1 1/2 hour longer.
  8. After 3 hours of cooking, work quickly to brush the ribs on both sides with some of the sauce. Close the lid quickly to maintain the temperature. Continue to cook the ribs bone side down, over the indirect very low heat for about 15 minutes.
  9. Check for doneness. The should have shrunk back from the ends most of the bones by 1/4 inch or more. If it has not, continue to cooking until nearly done, about 15 minutes. Lightly brush each rack again on both sides with more sauce.
  10. The ribs are done if when you pick up a rack at one end with tongs and bend it, the mean near the middle begins to tear. Remove from the grill, lightly brush with more sauce, and cut between the bones into individual ribs. Serve warm with the remaining sauce on the side.

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