Applewood Smoked Ribs

These have been a favourite among my friends for years. In fact, should you ever find yourself lonely, throw a rack (or six) on the barbecue. You'll soon find yourself surrounded with those you love or ... as I've found, you will make many, MANY new friends. Just don't tell them how easy it is.


4 racks baby back pork ribs

applewood wood chips

Spice rub:

  • 4 tsp kosher salt

  • 2 tsp ancho chile powder

  • 2 tsp HAWT paprika

  • 1 tsp brown sugar

  • 2 tsp onion powder

  • 1 tsp ground cumin

  • 1 tsp oregano

  • 1 tsp celery seed

  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper


BBQ sauce and mop:

  • 3/4 cup apple juice concentrate

  • 5 tbsp apple cider vinegar

  • 1/2 cup ketchup

  • 2 tsp worcestershire sauce

  • 1/2 tsp ancho chili powder

  • 1/2 tsp hawt paprika

  • 1/2 tsp onion powder

  • 1/4 tsp cumin

  • 1/4 tsp celery seed

  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper


Rub dat rub all over the ribs, paying extra attention to the meaty sides and working the rub in. Stand the ribs upright in a rib rack so that the meaty sides face the same direction. Leave as much room as possible between the racks; they shouldn’t touch. Let the racks sit at room temperature for 30 to 60 minutes while you prepare the grill.

If you're new to smoking on the barbecue, it's not hard. You can buy wood chips at most retail locations that sell barbecues (and even at some grocery stores now). Simply soak the wood chips in water, drain them and wrap in tin foil.  Poke a few holes and place directly on the burner of your barbecue. Close the lid and wait for smoke. When it appears, turn the burner down (you want a temperature of 250 F for these ribs). Once smoke appears and you've hit your desired temperature, you're ready to roll.

Set the ribs on the side of bbq opposite the lit burner, with the bone sides of the racks facing the lit burner. (The bones will protect the meat from cooking too quickly.) Close the lid and adjust the remaining burner until the temperature is 250 F and smoke the ribs for 1 hour; meanwhile – make the sawce:

Add 1/4 cup apple concentrate, 3 tbsp cider vinegar, ketchup, worcestershire sauce, chile powder, paprika, onion powder, cumin, celery seed and pepper to saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking until smooth and once begins to boil, remove from heat. You got your sauce ready (well done, easy, huh?).

To another small saucepan add 1/2 cup of apple juice concentrate and 2 tblsp cider vinegar. Bring to a simmer and remove from heat (this is your mop - you're a productivity machine). 

After one hour of smoking, lightly brush the ribs on both sides with about half of the mop. Close the lid. 

Let the ribs cook 2-3 hours longer, until the meat shrinks 1/4 to 1/2 inch from the ends. Open up the lid occasionally and baste the ribs with the remaining mop - keep those ribs succulent!

When close to done, lift each rib rack one at a time holding the meat at one end with tongs. Turn the ribs bone side up and let them hang so that the weight of the other end bends the rack in an arc. If the meat separates and tears easily near the middle of the arc ....

you're ready to eat!