Grilled Babyback Ribs

If you love Memphis style ribs, this grilled babyback ribs recipe will tickle your fancy! Seasoned with a spicy Memphis rub, the baby back ribs are basted with a sweet, tart mop sauce, giving the slabs a glistening glaze.

This recipe makes enough Memphis rub and basting liquid to grill three slabs. To make them fit your grill nicely, roll the slabs, securing with bamboo skewers. They just look cool this way too!


  • Three racks of baby back ribs, membrane removed
  • One-quarter cup paprika
  • Two tablespoons chili powder
  • Two tablespoons brown sugar
  • One tablespoon onion powder
  • One teaspoon black pepper
  • One teaspoon garlic powder
  • One teaspoon salt
  • One-half teaspoon ground red pepper
  • One-quarter teaspoon allspice
  • One-quarter teaspoon ground cumin

Combine the Memphis rub ingredients. Reserve two tablespoons of the rub for the mop sauce and finishing the ribs. Season all sides of the baby back slabs. Wrap in plastic wrap and allow the ribs to warm up on the countertop for on hour.

I prefer the taste of charcoal grilled ribs over that of ribs grilled in a gas grill, but either one will work. Use the indirect grilling method.

Wrap two cups of soaked, drained hickory chips in foil and lay the packet directly on the charcoal or over the lit gas burner. Add the ribs to the grill when the smoke begins pouring out.

Grill the babyback ribs for 4 to 5 hours, until nice and tender. Baste with mop sauce every 45 minutes. The sweet and tangy mop sauce adds great flavor while glazing the ribs.

Memphis Rib Basting Mop

  • One-half cup of cider vinegar
  • Two cups apple juice
  • One-half teaspoon Franks Red Hot Louisiana hot sauce
  • Two teaspoons of the Memphis rib rub

When the ribs are done, remove the skewers and cut the slabs into 3 or 4 rib sections. Brush on a final coat of the basting mop, then sprinkle on some of the reserved Memphis rub to finish. Enjoy your magnificent creation! No sauce needed for these ribs!

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