Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Oven-Baked Barbecued Baby Back Ribs

 Fall-off-the-bone tender ribs, slathered with a spicy homemade barbecue sauce, are irresistible. I wanted to cook these babies on the grill last week, but a thunderstorm forced me to cook them indoors in my oven. Sigh~
I had 2 racks of ribs I wanted to cook, but when it started raining, I put 1 rack in the freezer to save for another time. I don't have a dry place to grill when it is stormy. But ribs cooked in the oven are certainly very tasty too. The color is off in my photos, as the sun came out again when it was time to take pictures, so I took them out on my front porch. For some reason, the ribs look almost black, but they were not.
 I use a rub and sprinkle it all over the ribs, cover with plastic wrap, and keep in the refrigerator for a few hours. This time I prepared them in the morning, and cooked them later in the afternoon, for about 3 hours total. Barbecue sauce is applied the last 30-45 minutes of cooking to ensure a spicy, sticky glaze. Baby back ribs are delicious prepared this way, they just won't have the fresh smoked flavor of the outdoor grill. We still love them though. Easy to prepare, you will need about 2 1/2 - 3 hours cooking time. 
Oven-Baked Baby Back Ribs
From Lynda's Recipe Box

1 or 2 racks of Baby Back ribs
about 1 tablespoon rub, either your own mix, or a purchased rub-recipe below)
liquid smoke-about 2 teaspoons
Barbecue sauce- I used this homemade version

1. Rinse the ribs with cold water. Dry them well with paper towels.

2. Remove the membrane from the underside of the ribs. To do that, loosen the membrane at one corner with a paring knife. Using a paper towel, or a kitchen towel, take hold of the membrane and slowly pull it off. For a picture, go here. Rub a little liquid smoke over the ribs. Sprinkle the ribs with the rub. Place on a baking pan and cover with plastic wrap. Place in fridge for 8 to 24 hours. ( I have skipped this step before, and cooked the ribs right away, and you will still have really tender ribs. But waiting longer gives the rub flavors longer to penetrate the meat.)

3. Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F. Remove the plastic wrap from the ribs, and allow them to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Place ribs fat side up on baking pan. Cover pan well with aluminum foil, or wrap the ribs in foil, either way. Place baking pan with ribs into the oven and bake for
 2-2 1/2 hours.

4. Remove the ribs from the oven. Pull back the foil and insert a paring knife between the bones into the thickest piece of meat. If the knife goes in easily and the meat feels tender, then the ribs are ready for the BBQ sauce. If the ribs need more cooking time, cover with the foil and cook for 30 more minutes.

5. When done, remove the ribs from the oven. Pour off any accumulated juices. Brush BBQ sauce liberally all over the ribs. Increase oven temperature to 350 degrees. Place ribs back in oven, uncovered. Bake for 20-30 minutes, turning the ribs over once, until the sauce is sticky. Baste again if desired and remove from oven. Let ribs rest about 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

For an easy rub, I mixed together 2 teaspoons sweet paprika, 1 teaspoon black pepper, 2 teaspoons coarse salt, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/4 teaspoon onion powder, and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper. Or use a purchased rub, if desired.


  1. Now you've done it. I will be obsessed with all-things-ribs until I make this.

  2. They look great - nice and moist.

  3. rub-a-dub-dub! these ribs look marvelous indeed!

  4. I forget about baking ribs in the oven and its usually something we do only in dry weather. Your ribs look delicious, Lynda, and I'm going to try your recipe this weekend. You solved my questions about what to serve on Sunday.


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