Recipe courtesy of Joe Haracz

Tailgator's Baby Back Ribs

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 7 hr 30 min
  • Prep: 30 min
  • Inactive: 4 hr
  • Cook: 3 hr
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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1/2 cup Tailgator's Rib Rub, recipe follows

4 slabs back ribs, skin removed

1 hickory log

Basting Liquid, recipe follows

1 1/2 cup BBQ sauce, your favorite 

Tailgator's Rib Rub:

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup kosher salt

1 cup paprika

3/4 cup garlic powder

1/2 cup onion powder

1/2 cup chili powder

1/2 cup cayenne pepper

1/4 cup dried oregano

1/4 cup ground black pepper

1/4 cup ground cumin

Basting Liquid: 1/2 cup white vinegar

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

2 dashes hot sauce



  1. Using 1 tablespoon of Tailgator's Rib Rub, evenly season the rack of ribs on both sides, Do not over-season; this may cause a crust on ribs. Allow seasoned ribs to rest covered in the refrigerator for at least 4 to 5 hours.
  2. According to your smoker's manufacturer's instructions, smoke the ribs concave side down for 2 hours and 45 minutes at 220 degrees F, using hickory wood.
  3. After the first hour of smoking, begin to spray ribs with basting liquid every half hour until cook cycle is finished.
  4. After the cook cycle, remove ribs, mop them with BBQ sauce and allow to rest.
  5. In a large foil pan place cooking racks on the bottom and fill with water just below the rack line. Place the ribs so the bones are vertical and layer them in the pan. Do not allow the meat side of the ribs to touch the walls of the pan.
  6. Place foil pan over medium-high heat and cook for 7 minutes. Remove ribs from the pan and place ribs on a medium-high grill and mop with BBQ sauce, turning frequently in order to not allow the sauce to burn.

Tailgator's Rib Rub:

  1. Mix all above ingredients by hand. Store in an air-tight container.

Basting Liquid: 1/2 cup white vinegar

Yield: about 1 cup
  1. Place first 4 ingredients in a labeled spray bottle. Add water to fill the spray bottle and shake to mix thoroughly. Refrigerate until ready to use.