Despite there being a quite a few ingredients, this is actually a very easy recipe: marinate, bundle into silver foil, roast and then simply finish unwrapped in the oven – or transfer to the BBQ. The result should be beautifully soft, moist and flavorful ribs.

ribBeing from the UK, we are not as geared up for BBQs as our American cousins: smokers are rare, indeed BBQ weather too! We tend to use our BBQs more as a charcoal grill rather than a hot smoker, or oven. For that reason, this is based on being cooked in the oven – then finished on the BBQ (if you are blessed with suitable weather) or simply finishing uncovered until you get a nice colour and crispiness.


Baby back ribs are from the inner end of the ribs – closest to the spine – spareribs are the thicker meatier outer end. Therefore, spareribs have more meat – but need to cook for longer. The St. Louis Cut is a very neatly trimmed sparerib.


  • 1.8 kg (4 lb) pork babyback or spareribs
  • 1 lemon’s juice (or half an orange, but use a little less honey unless you want a sweeter marinade)
  • 230 ml (1 cup) honey
  • 60 ml (0.25 cup) tomato ketchup
  • 60 ml (0.25 cup) soy sauce
  • 60 ml (0.25 cup) Worcestershire sauce
  • 5 ml (1 tsp.) chilli sauce (less if you want, or 15ml if you want more of a kick)
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp.) paprika
  • 5 ml (1 tsp.) dry mustard
  • 10 ml (2 tsp. / 1 dsp. oregano)
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp.) garlic powder, or 3 cloves garlic, crushed


  1. Ideally, the ribs should marinate overnight, so prep the first part the day before. Mix all the marinade ingredients together (everything but the ribs!)
  2. Trim the ribs, if required, and remove the membrane from the underside (non-meaty side) of the ribs. Its quite easy to do, but too things to remember:
    1. Use a kitchen towel if you need to to get a better grip.
    2. Peel from the narrow to the wide end.
  3. Take a large peace of foil, double and a bit the length of the ribs, place the ribs in the middle – meat side down – liberally cover with marinade, then turn over apply again.
  4. Seal up the rack and place in the fridge until needed.
  5. Heat the oven to 160C / 320F and roast for 2½ hours (3 hours if you are using spareribs). Then open up the foil and cook for another 30 minutes (or until the the meat turn a deep golden brown) or transfer to the BBQ and cook until the desired colour has been reached.

The marinade needs to be cooked – it is not a dipping sauce – if you want to serve the ribs with extra sauce, reserve the juices when you remove the rack from the foil, you can either serve ‘as is’ or, if required, add a little cornstarch to thicken it. (Mix about a tsp. of cornstarch with a little water, bring the sauce to the boil and while stirring vigorously pour in the cornstarch mixture).

For those that are lucky enough to have one, then a Traeger or similar low temperature closed-lid barbecue would be great for the whole process. ‘3-2-1’ seems to be a popular method: 3 hours uncovered, 2 wrapped in foil then a final hour unwrapped – but I find 3 hours of cooking time sufficient to have ribs where the meat will just fall off the bone.