Taste Of Now: Super Simple New Year’s Rib Rub


By the time we get to the New Year holiday, my cooking inspiration is burned out. I’m a Southern girl, so as long as I have been alive, it has been tradition to cook black-eyed peas, cabbage, and cornbread to usher in luck and prosperity for the new year. Call it an almost ready-made meal. Thanks to this tradition, we only have one aspect of our New Year’s meal to worry about- what meat am I going to cook? To celebrate 2017, we smoked a Boston butt. 2016? We smoked chicken. 2018? It’s going to be ribs.

In partnership with The Pork Board, we’re (@letmegrill and I) going to show you how to create the simplest pork rib rub ever. It’s simple, smoky, sweet, flavorful and you can easily customize it to fit your needs.

Prep time

Start by washing your ribs once removed from the packaging. Cutting the ribs into s St. Louis style cut is ultimately up to you. We do, because it makes slicing the ribs down after smoking easier.

This is also a great time to get your grill ready to smoke your ribs. You could, of course, throw your ribs in the oven, but it really takes away from the smoke flavor. I’m pro grill when it comes to ribs, roasts, and briskets. We are smoking these ribs, not barbecuing them (yes, there’s a difference), so we prepared the grill to smoke via offset.

Soak some applewood in water while your grill is burning off. You’re going to throw this wood on the grill over the course of the next 6-8 hours.

The grill is going to take care of the smoke factor, so the only thing you *need* is a little salt and a little sweetness. Rub your washed ribs down with some yellow mustard and proceed to season. We only use 5 items per slab:

  • 2 tablespoons of kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon of black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon of paprika

You can add other things like cayenne for heat, or chili powder for Southwestern flare, but I prefer my ribs simple, smoky and sweet.

Smoke session 

Those ribs from Sunday #letmegrill #ribs #spareribs

A post shared by Letmegrill (@letmegrillofficial) on

By now, your charcoal should be white, your wood should be soaked and your ribs should be seasoned. Take a handful of those wet chips and throw over the charcoal. On the opposite side of the hot coals (remember, we are offset smoking, so charcoal should only be on one side of the grill) lay your ribs down and close the grill. Check your ribs every 2 hours and add some wood when needed. If your temperature is not holding well, add a few coals to heat things up. My grill stays consistent at 375 degrees.

8 hours later 

You should have sweet, smoky, savory, tender, delicious ribs. Throw some cabbage, black-eyed peas and cornbread on your plate and chow down. Delish.

More about Aprill

Aprill Coleman is an award-winning beauty, lifestyle and wellness blogger and freelance writer based in Jackson, Mississippi.

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