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May 23, 2013

Sweet and Smoky Barbecued Ribs with Tequila SauceRecipe by Jamie Purviance

Rating: 5 stars

11 Reviews

Serves: 4 // Prep time: 30 minutes, plus about 25 minutes for the sauce | Grilling time: 3 to 4 hours | Special equipment: 3 fist-sized hickory wood chunks (for a charcoal grill) or 6 large handfuls hickory wood chips (for a gas grill)

Grocery List

Fresh Produce

  • 1 limes
  • 1 yellow onions

Meat / Poultry / Seafood

  • 2 racks St. Louis–style spareribs, each 3 to 3½ lb

Oil and Spices

  • .5 tsp chipotle chile powder
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp prepared chili powder
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika

Condiments

  • .5 cups cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • .75 cups ketchup

Dairy

  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter

Wine / Beer / Spirits

  • 1.5 fl oz tequila

Other

  • 3 hickory wood chunks (for a charcoal grill) or 6 handfuls hickory wood chips (for a gas grill)
  • .5 cups dark brown sugar

Ingredients

Rub

  • 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons granulated garlic
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon chipotle chile powder

  • 2 racks St. Louis–style spareribs, each 3 to 3-½ pounds

Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • ¾ cup ketchup
  • 3 tablespoons tequila
  • ⅓ cup cider vinegar
  • ⅓ cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon prepared chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl mix the rub ingredients. 

  2. If using wood chips, soak in water for at least 30 minutes (no need to soak wood chunks).

  3. Using a dull dinner knife, slide the tip under the membrane covering the back of each rack of ribs. Lift and loosen the membrane until it breaks, and then grab a corner with a paper towel and pull it off. Season the racks all over with the rub. Let the racks stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before grilling. 

  4. Prepare the grill for indirect cooking over low heat (250˚ to 300˚F).

  5. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the onion and cook until slightly softened, 4 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the ketchup, tequila, vinegar, brown sugar, honey, chili powder, and granulated garlic and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until thickened, 18 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and stir in the lime zest. 

  6. Brush the cooking grates clean. Add one wood chunk to the charcoal or one handful of the wood chips to the smoker box of a gas grill, following manufacturer’s instructions, and close the lid. When the wood begins to smoke, place the racks over indirect low heat, bone side down, and close the lid. Cook until the meat has shrunk back from the bones at least ½ inch in several places and the meat tears easily when you lift each rack, 3 to 4 hours. Keep the temperature of the grill between 250° and 300°F. If you’re using a charcoal grill, replenish the charcoal as needed to maintain a steady temperature. Leave the lid off the grill for about 5 minutes to help the new briquettes light. Add one wood chunk to the charcoal every 45 minutes, or drain and add one handful of the remaining wood chips to the smoker box every 20 minutes before the old chips burn out. During the last 30 minutes of cooking time, lightly brush the racks with some of the sauce. 

  7. Remove the racks from the grill and let rest for 10 minutes. Just before serving, lightly brush the racks with sauce again. Cut the racks into individual ribs and serve warm with remaining sauce. 

11 Reviews

Average Rating

Rating: 5 stars

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Rating: 5 stars

May 24, 2013

Alfonso E. S

Fingers...

Very good for the occasion, even if I have to tent the grill.

Type of Griller

Intermediate

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

Rating: 5 stars

May 25, 2013

WILLIAM B

Cook"s Illustrated

There is a grilling study for ribs that is very informative in this month's Cook's Illustrated, that shows you what is wrong with this "very good" technique, and your recipe is the way I have always done it, but I have been getting such good results out this "wrapped on foil" method during part of my cooking, that I can't wait to try this Cook's Illustrated technique, but it will have to involve more "smoke exposure" for our taste and less "California" BBQ sauce.

Type of Griller

Advanced

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

Rating: 5 stars

May 27, 2013

Rick R

SWEET AND SMOKY BARBECUED RIBS WITH TEQUILA SAUCE WAS DELISH!

As a Memorial Day tradition in our home, I try the latest rib recipe on my Weber grill. This one was a winner. The ribs were the "Fall off the bone"type and the sauce was really great when combined with the ribs. I did tweak the sauce just a bit with 2 tablespoons of bourbon, an additional 1/2 teaspoon of chili powder and the juice from the lime that was zested. The lime taste in the sauce was a good pairing with the ribs. I will try this one again!

Type of Griller

Advanced

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

Rating: stars

May 28, 2013

Linda M

AWESOME!!! BEST EVER!!

This recipe was awesome. My family loved it and it was so easy to prepare and cook. Thanks Weber! It's a keeper!!!

Type of Griller

Intermediate

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

Rating: 5 stars

Jun 3, 2013

Christine A

Total success

Everyone - everyone - loved this recipe. I used oak (it's a new favorite for me) and cayenne and it was a total success!

Type of Griller

Intermediate

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

Rating: 5 stars

Jun 9, 2013

Gary B

Exceptionally Good

I love ribs.... When they are good. I recently purchased my first Weber grill and found this recipe so I decided, let's try it. They took a while to cook but the end result was fall off the bone, finger licking good ribs. It is not hard at all. Just follow the recipe and you will have restaurant quality ribs for dinner. Give yourself 4 hours but go for it.
The sauce has a nice tang with just enough heat to give it a kick.

Can't wait to try a few other recipes in here. Try this one, you will like it, just keep the napkins handy and dive in.

Type of Griller

Intermediate

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

Rating: 5 stars

Jun 16, 2013

Tom W

Don't steam your ribs

This is a great recipe. William B. don't go with the Cook's Illustrated article. The 3-2-1 delivers a very nice tender rib that is steamed for two hours. But it will not win you any championship points. Just cook your ribs low and slow at 225 or so and you will have the best ribs ever made. Or use baby back ribs and you only need to cook them 3-4 hrs.

Type of Griller

Advanced

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

Rating: 5 stars

Jul 10, 2013

Joe A

Family loved it

Great recipe for ribs, chicken, and brisket. Grilled ribs following the instructions and it was very good. My family did feel the sauce was a bit sweet, we are used to Texas style ribs.

The second time I didn't use the sauce and it was a hit with everyone! I even used the rub on my brisket and chicken and it was very popular. On the chicken I smoked it for three hours with the rub and it was so tender and juicy.

Winner!

Type of Griller

Beginner

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

Rating: 5 stars

Aug 17, 2013

Wade S

Great results

Used this recipe for my first attempt at ribs over charcoal. They were delicious. The smoked paprika makes a great rub.

Type of Griller

Beginner

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

Rating: 5 stars

Nov 13, 2013

Brandon P

Great rib sauce

Good recipe I used Jim Bean whiskey instead of Tequila

Type of Griller

Advanced

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

Rating: 5 stars

Jul 14, 2014

George G

Great smokey flavor for a Gaser

My cook took exactly 3 hours plus 15-20 minutes at the end for saucing.
The main 3 hour cook was with one burner on med/high and other two off. I put the smoker box on top of the lit burner and added soaked chips as need for the first 2 hours, about a hand full at a time.
I put all burners on my EP-310 at medium for the saucing.
Very good smoke flavor for a gas grill cook.
The ribs were tender and juicy, not at all dried out. Almost as good as those done on my BGE.

Type of Griller

Intermediate

Would you recommend this recipe? YES

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Sweet and Smoky Barbecued Ribs with Tequila Sauce

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