Neely's Southwest Style Ribs

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 6 hr 15 min
  • Prep: 15 min
  • Inactive: 2 hr
  • Cook: 4 hr
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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2 tablespoons ancho chili powder

2 tablespoons smoked paprika

2 tablespoons dried oregano

1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder

1 tablespoon garlic powder

1 tablespoon ground mustard

1 tablespoon ground cumin

2 tablespoons kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 (3-pound) slabs pork spareribs

Hickory chips

Southwest Barbecue Sauce, recipe follows

Southwest Barbecue Sauce:

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 yellow onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, diced

2 tablespoons tomato paste

2 tablespoons reserved spice rub

2 cups ketchup

1/4 cup water

1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup peach nectar

1/2 cup light brown sugar

2 tablespoons dry mustard

1 lemon, juiced

1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Pinch kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a small glass bowl to create the spice rub. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the spice mixture for the BBQ Sauce.
  2. Rinse and the dry ribs, then put on a clean cutting board and pull off the thin fatty skin that lines the underside of the ribs. Trim the ribs of excess fat and meat. Liberally season both sides of the ribs with the spice rub. Wrap the ribs with plastic wrap or foil and refrigerate for at least 2 hours so flavors can develop and permeate the meat.
  3. Soak the wood chips in water for 1 hour before grilling.
  4. Preheat the grill to 250 degrees F. Using the hickory and charcoal, set up the grill for indirect heat.
  5. Arrange the ribs, meatier side down, on the far side of the grill away from the coals. Close the cover of the grill and cook the ribs for 3 hours. Turn and cook until the ribs bend, about 1 more hour.
  6. You will need to check on the charcoal and chips during the smoking process and replenish as needed. You will also need to maintain a temperature of 250 degrees F.
  7. Remove ribs from grill to a cutting board and sprinkle with more spice rub. Cut each slab into individual ribs and transfer to a serving platter. Serve the ribs with Southwest Barbecue Sauce.
  8. For dry ribs: Sprinkle Neely's BBQ seasoning over the ribs, cut between the bones and serve.

Southwest Barbecue Sauce:

  1. Heat the canola oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute until the onions are soft. Stir in the remaining ingredients and simmer until thick and the sauce is flavorful, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper, if necessary.
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