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Grilled Ribs Recipe: Perfectly Tender and Flavorful Steps

I’ve included some videos below for those who prefer to watch rather than read.

Scrumptious homemade Grilled Ribs

Grilling ribs can seem tricky, but you can achieve tender, juicy, and flavorful ribs at home with a few easy steps. Preheat your grill to 300°F and ensure you have a spice rub ready.

Ribs need to be cooked low and slow to break down the tough meat and make it tender. After seasoning them with a flavorful dry rub, you can cook them in foil for added juiciness and finish them off with your favorite barbecue sauce.

Removing the membrane from the underside of the ribs is a key step that makes a big difference. This ensures the flavors fully penetrate the meat and helps it cook more evenly.


  1. Preheat the Grill
    Set your grill to 300°F. Make sure the coals or flames are on one side only, creating a hot and cool zone.

  2. Prepare the Ribs
    Remove the membrane from the back of the ribs. This helps the seasoning stick better. Rub the ribs with a mix of brown sugar, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper.

  3. Cook the Ribs
    Place the ribs on the cool side of the grill. Cover and let them cook for about 2 1/2 to 3 hours. This slow cooking keeps them juicy and tender.

  4. Add Barbecue Sauce
    After the ribs are cooked, remove them from the grill and unwrap any foil. Brush on your favorite barbecue sauce.

  5. Caramelize the Sauce
    Turn the grill to high heat. Place the ribs back on the hot side. Grill for 3-5 minutes, turning the ribs as needed, until the sauce begins to bubble and caramelize.

  6. Rest and Serve
    Let the ribs rest for 10 minutes after removing them from the heat. This lets the juices redistribute. Slice between the bones and serve.

These steps will help you make delicious, tender, and flavorful ribs every time. Enjoy!

Tips, Tricks & Storing

Trim the Membrane
Before grilling, remove the thin membrane on the back of the ribs. This helps the seasoning penetrate the meat and makes the ribs more tender. Use a paper towel to get a good grip.

Season Generously
Use a dry rub featuring your favorite spices. Avoid too much sugar to prevent burnt spots during grilling.

Temperature Control
Keep the grill temperature steady between 225-250°F (107-121°C). This low and slow method breaks down connective tissues, making the ribs tender and juicy.

Use a Two-Zone Grill
Set up your grill with a hot side and a cooler side. Cook your ribs on the cooler side to ensure even cooking.

Foil Wrapping for Tenderness
Wrap the ribs in foil with a bit of apple juice, butter, brown sugar, and honey. This creates a steamy environment, softening the meat before finishing on high heat.

Apple Juice1/2 cup
Salted Butter1/2 cup
Brown Sugar1/4 cup
Honey1/4 cup

Final Searing
After removing from foil, brush with barbecue sauce. Grill on high heat for 3-5 minutes until the sauce bubbles and caramelizes.

Storing Leftovers
Let ribs cool to room temperature before storing. Place them in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days. For longer storage, freeze the ribs for up to 2 months. Reheat gently to avoid drying out.

Reheating Tips
For best results, reheat ribs in the oven at 250°F (121°C) wrapped in foil until warmed through. You can also use a microwave, but the ribs may dry out more quickly.

Recipe Variations & Serving Suggestions


Spice Rub Options:

  • Sweet and Spicy: Use brown sugar, smoked paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper.
  • Herb-Infused: Try rosemary, thyme, garlic powder, salt, and black pepper.
  • Classic BBQ: Use a mix of brown sugar, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper.

Cooking Methods:

  • Slow and Low: Cook the ribs over low heat for 2.5 to 3 hours to keep them tender.
  • Quick and High: Grill at a higher temperature for a shorter time if you’re in a hurry.
  • Oven Finished: Start on the grill, then move to a preheated oven to finish cooking.

Serving Suggestions

Side Dishes:

  • Coleslaw: Adds a crunchy, refreshing texture.
  • Corn on the Cob: Grilled or boiled, it’s always a hit.
  • Baked Beans: A hearty addition that complements the ribs well.


  • Classic BBQ: Brush on during the last few minutes of grilling.
  • Honey Mustard: For a tangy twist, mix honey and mustard and apply generously.
  • Spicy Sriracha: Add a kick with a sriracha and honey mix.


  • Fresh Herbs: Sprinkle chopped parsley or cilantro on top.
  • Lemon Wedges: Add a zesty touch by squeezing lemon juice over the ribs.
  • Pickles: Serve with pickles to balance the richness of the ribs.

Enjoy experimenting with different combinations to find your favorite way to enjoy grilled ribs!

Benjamin Happy Muncher

Hi, I'm Benjamin. I love cooking, long walks, and my girlfriend! Here you’ll find simple and delicious recipes that you can make in 30 minutes or less.