A Complete Guide: Grilled Baby Back Ribs and Brandied-Strawberry BBQ Sauce


As dog days of summer, backyard barbecue and swimsuit season simultaneously roll into full swing, we begin considering the paradox and reality of June, July & August… We want to look our best on the beach while devouring blue-cheese stuffed grilled burgers, smoked pulled pork sandwiches slathered in heavenly bourbon barbeque sauce and infrared seared porterhouses encrusted with herbed butters, followed by bowls of stone fruit shortcake.  And, all washed down with a locally crafted beer (or 6).


Okay.  I’m sold.  The gym and beach can always wait another day.


Bring on that barbecue!


Simple Baby Back Dry Rub

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Total Time10 mins
Servings: 1 /2 cup
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill


  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground pepper


  • Pulse the olive oil and all the other spices and herbs in a food processor to create the rub.
  • Season additionally to taste. Reserve.


Baby Back Ribs with Brandied Strawberry BBQ Sauce

Baby Back Ribs with Brandied Strawberry BBQ Sauce


Brandied Strawberry BBQ Sauce

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time45 mins
Servings: 3 Cups
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill


  • 4 cups strawberries skewered
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2-3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 medium sweet onion diced
  • 2 1/2 ounces brandy
  • 1 cup all-natural ketchup
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar packed
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3-4 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons dried ground mustard
  • 1 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper or to taste
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  • Preheat the grill to medium high.
  • Skewer the strawberries and brush with oil. Lay over direct heat for 1-2 minutes per side, or until char marks are well-defined. Remove and set aside.
  • In heavy bottom pan over indirect heat, bring 1 tablespoon of oil to a gentle simmer. Toss in the garlic and onion, then sauté 5-7 minutes or until fragrant and beginning to caramelize.
  • Turn down heat of the grill to low-medium and add the grilled strawberries along with all remaining ingredients to the pan. Cook for 20 minutes, stirring regularly, until the sauce thickens.
  • Remove the pan from the heat, let cool slightly and puree in a food processor until smooth. Reserve.


A Complete Guide: Grilled Baby Back Ribs and Brandied-Stawberry BBQ Sauce

Prep Time4 hrs 15 mins
Cook Time2 hrs 30 mins
Total Time6 hrs 45 mins
Servings: 4
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill


  • 2 slabs baby back ribs trimmed and membranes removed
  • Kosher salt
  • Canola Oil
  • A Bachelor and His Grill's Baby Back Dry Rub
  • Hickory wood chips wrapped in tin foil use knife to slit vents in foil packet
  • A Bachelor and His Grill's Brandied Strawberry BBQ Sauce


  • Lay the trimmed ribs over a plastic wrap-lined baking sheet. Pat the ribs dry with a paper towel. Lightly salt the meat, then brush with olive oil & massage a liberal degree of dry rub across all portions of the slab. Wrap ribs tightly with underlying plastic wrap & marinate 4-6 hours, up to over night.
  • Remove ribs from refrigeration 1 hour prior to grilling.
  • At least 30 minutes prior to cooking, preheat the grill to low-medium (225 degrees), using the 2-zone cooking method (see notes below). Place your tin foil pouch filled with wood chips in back corner of the hot zone.
  • Once the grill is at the proper temperature and smoke is visible, re-wrap the ribs tightly in tin foil, then lay bone-side down over the cool zone grill grates. Cook for 90 minutes, rotating once after 45 minutes.
  • Remove ribs from grill and tin foil. Place the ribs back over the cool zone grill grates, unwrapped, bone-side down, for an additional 45 minutes, basting with oil intermittently and rotating every 15 minutes.
  • Remove ribs from the grill grates and turn both sides of the grill to maximum heat.
  • Slather all sides of ribs with Brandied Strawberry BBQ Sauce for 15 minutes while grilling over direct heat. Baste consistently caramelizing one layer upon another.
  • Remove the slab from grill when juices run clear and the internal temp has reached 180 degrees (see additional notes below).
  • Place on a cutting board, brush one final time with sauce and rest 10 minutes prior to serving.


When purchasing ribs from the butcher: Request they be trimmed and the tough membrane removed. If the membrane is not removed in advance, simply lay the ribs, bone-side up, on a cutting board. Create an incision in the membrane by slicing through the tough flap with a sharp knife. Then, with a paper towel in hand, grip the membrane and pull away from the bone - slicing and pulling until it's entirely removed.
Two-Zone Cooking Method: Heat only one side of the grill, creating one hot direct heat zone and one cooler indirect heat zone.
Doneness: There are several tests for ensuring appropriate cooking of ribs, but this is as much an art as it is a science.
1. Ribs meat should not fall off the bone - overcooked.
2. Rib slabs should nearly break when lifted with tongs, not wilt - undercooked.
3. Internal temperature is difficult to measure due to the thinness of the meat, proximity of bones and variances in size from one end of the slab to the other.
4. With a toothpick inserted, juices should run clear and if cut into for a sneak peek, the meat should appear white with no pink remaining.
5. If able to accurately measure internal temp, remove from grill when ribs reach 180 degrees.


Written by Live Fire Republic
David Olson is a nationally-recognized American Culinary Federation Chef, television personality and international social media influencer, award-winning recipe developer, live fire grill master, global adventurer-extraordinaire, and the creator behind, "Live Fire Republic." David has an organic and attentive audience of more than two million households weekly via countless television and event appearances, his blog, and various print, radio and social media channels. Meanwhile his recipes and creative content continue to be shared across the web and in print publications from sea to shining sea. For all media inquiries, please email PR agency, The Lisa Ekus Group; Boston, MA - Jaimee Constantine, 413.247.9325 or jaimee@lisaekus.com.