Bourbon Baby Back Ribs

 bourbon ribs

Baby back ribs smoked with oak barrel staves and glazed with a delicious bourbon bbq sauce.

Baby back ribs are one of my favorite things to smoke. They are certainly something I grew up loving. I've also made the finals at the Memphis in May World Championship cooking back back ribs while partnered with my buddy Curtis Nations, so they are near and dear to my heart!

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Meat Church Bourbon & BBQ Pairings:


Prepare your smoker or pellet grill
Prepare your smoker at 275 degrees. We used oak barrel staves for this cook. Otherwise we recommend hickory, pecan or apple wood for this smoke.

Prep the ribs
Flip the ribs meat side down and remove the membrane off the back of the rack. This is very easily accomplished by grabbing the membrane with a paper towel and pulling it off. Removing the membrane will allow your rub to penetrate into the meat more effectively and also provide a more pleasant eating experience.

Apply a light coat of mustard all over the ribs to act as a binder for the seasoning. 

bourbon ribs

Season both sides of the the ribs with The Gospel All Purpose seasoning.

bourbon bbq ribs

Allow the seasoning to adhere for one hour if time allows.  

bourbon ribs

Smoke the Ribs
Place the ribs meat side up in the smoker.

Optionally, spritz the ribs with apple cider vinegar about 90 minutes into the cook if they look dry. 

Make the Bourbon BBQ Sauce
While the ribs are smoking, make your bourbon bbq sauce.

bourbon bbq sauce

Continue smoking the ribs
Smoke the ribs until you get to a beautiful mahogany color. In this video that took 2 hours. 

Bourbon baby back ribs

Wrap the ribs in aluminum foil to protect that perfect color. Lay out 2 long pieces of aluminum foil. Create a bed with 5 pats of butter, 1 small handful of brown sugar and a heavy bead of agave nectar. Lay the ribs meat side down on the sweet concoction. Close the foil tightly.  

baby back ribs

Return the ribs to the smoker and continue to cook until meat has started to pull back. You are looking for tenderness while probing with an instant read thermometer which is typically around an internal temp of 203 - 205. This typically takes 90 minutes or so depending on the size of the ribs.

Finish the Ribs
Remove the ribs from the smoker. Open the foil and create a foil boat with the ribs meat side up.

bourbon bbq sauce

Apply the bourbon BBQ sauce. 

bourbon bbq sauce

Return the ribs to the smoker just long enough for the sauce to tack up which is about 10 minutes.

bourbon bbq sauce

Remove the ribs from the smoker.

baby back ribs

Allow to sit for a few minutes. Then slice and enjoy!

bourbon ribs

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