For years I thought Grilled Baby Back Ribs were difficult to make. As it turns out they couldn't be easier to make. Using a dry rub adds a lot of flavor and can be adjusted to the seasonings you enjoy. Add in your favorite barbecue sauce and you've got ribs better and less expensive than ordering out.
Have you ever wished you could make Grilled Baby Back Ribs? Keep reading and learn the secrets to making tender, juicy and perfectly seasoned ribs every time.
I’m very happy to announce that I’m a 2020 Reynolds Wrap Ambassador. This is a sponsored post but all opinions are my own.
When I started dating my wife I was on a non-red meat diet. She loved baby back ribs and it was one of those foods I had never gotten into.
I had never worked at a restaurant that served ribs, so I never needed to learn how to cook them. That meant unless we went out to dinner, Lisa was stuck eating precooked packaged varieties of ribs that were sold at the grocery store.
I’m almost ashamed to admit that…sigh.
But I have learned the secret of Grilled Baby Back Ribs and how amazingly easy they are to prepare especially using Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil! And I’m going to share what I’ve learned with you.
What do I need to make Grilled Baby Back Ribs?
Let’s start by gathering the ingredients we need to make Grilled Baby Back Ribs. In Chef Speak this is called the Mise en Place which translates into Everything in its Place.
Not only does setting your ingredients up ahead of time speed the cooking process, but it also helps ensure you have everything you need to make the dish.
Remove the membrane from the back of the rack of ribs
The ribs I purchased already had the membrane removed from the back of the racks so I didn’t have to do this before coating with my dry rub. It’s important to remove this part of the ribs before cooking.
- At one end of the rack, slide a dinner knife under the membrane and over a bone.
- Lift and loosen the membrane until it tears.
- Grab the edge of the membrane with a paper towel and pull it off.
- The membrane may come off in one whole piece, or you may need to remove it in smaller pieces.
Do I need to make a dry rub for my Grilled Baby Back Ribs?
That’s a tricky question, because you really don’t have to make a dry rub, but you do have to season the ribs. So the short is yes you do.
What is a Dry Rub?
A dry rub is a mixture of spices, salt, sugar, herbs, zest and just about any other aromatics you’d like to flavor meat and poultry with.
It can be as simple as you like or layered with complex flavors for a perfect bite every time.
Remember, this is your dinner, make it like you want it to taste.
After preparing the dry rub, the next step is placing a generous coating of the rub on the ribs and actually rubbing it in a bit. Coat both sides of the ribs with the dry rub.
Believe it or not your almost ready to grill the ribs!
Cut 8 sections of Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil approximately 15 inches by 18 inches. (or if you’re using the 12-inch roll of foil, make the sections 12 inches by 15 inches)
Wrap each section in one piece of foil, tucking the end pieces in to make a package.
Repeat this process with another piece of foil for each half rack. Place the rack in the opposite direction so the seams aren’t running the same way.
*I like to cut the racks in half before cooking because it makes it easier to serve the individual pre-cut portions. And the smaller racks are easier to flip during the final grilling process when you sauce and brown the ribs.
I’ve been using Reynolds Wrap® Aluminum Foil for as long as I can remember. It’s been a fixture in my kitchens both at home and at work and I’d be lost without it.
At work, I always purchase the 18-inch rolls of Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty Foil. And as my wife will attest to old habits die hard, because that’s the only foil I use at home. My job description may have changed since retirement, but I still cook like a chef at home. The 18-inch foil covers just about everything I make, without having to overlap the sheets. Like I always say, work smarter not harder.
Because everyones needs are different, Reynolds Wrap® Aluminum Foil offers a variety of different cooking foil in sizes that accommodates just about any task. I love the versatility of kitchen foil, it withstands high heat and extreme cold, making it perfect for everything from grilling to freezer storage.
And, did I mention how quick and easy clean up is with kitchen foil? After preparing a delicious meal for my friends and family, the last thing I want to do is spend extra time cleaning up.
How do I cook the ribs and how high should the grill temperature be?
Place the double wrapped ribs on the preheated grill (350 degrees F). You’re going to use indirect heat to cook the ribs for 2.5 hours.
This means the heat will come from the grill elements on each side of the ribs, not directly under it. This makes your grill more like an oven, allowing you to slow roast the ribs until that perfect stage of tenderness where they almost fall apart on their own.
*Chef Dennis Tip
If you have trouble regulating the temperature of the grill, you may have to adjust your cooking time. A 400 degree grill will only take 2 hours, and a 300 degree grill will take an extra 30 minutes to cook. So keep an eye on the grill temperature!
*Chef Dennis Tip
Rotate the foil packages halfway through the process, switching the ribs in the front with the ribs in the back. Don’t open the grill often to check on things, trust in the process.
Another thing I love about Reynolds Wrap® is it’s proudly made in the U.S.A. in Louisville, KY.
After carefully unwrapping the ribs, coat them with your favorite barbecue sauce and place them back over direct heat on clean and oil-coated grill racks to finish the grilling process.
If there is any juice in the foil packets, add it to your barbecue sauce before coating the ribs.
*Chef Dennis Tip
The ribs will be fall-apart tender at this point so make sure to either oil the grill or use grill pan spray before placing the sauced ribs back on the grill to brown and get those lovely grill marks.
Can I cook the Baby Back Ribs in the Oven?
Yes you can. The process is exactly the same for the grill or for the oven.
Place a sheet pan under the foil packets to catch any juice that may find its way out of the packet.
Finish the ribs under the broiler after saucing. You won’t get the pretty grill marks under the broiler but the barbecue sauce will still caramelize adding extra flavor to the ribs.
You can also finish the ribs on your grill if you want to make everyone think you made Grilled Baby Back Ribs.
Any way you cook up these ribs, they’re going to be fall-apart tender, moist and oh so delicious. Making ribs at home will not only save you money but impress your friends and family will your grilling prowess!
And the best part is there are no pans to clean up afterwards. Just toss the used foil and enjoy the ribs and your evening!
If you enjoyed this recipe, you may also like these:
- Grilled Dry Rub Chicken Wings
- How to Grill a Steakhouse Style Steak
- Grilled Lamb Chops with Watermelon Feta Salad
- The Ultimate Grilled Chicken Sandwich