Oven-Baked BBQ Ribs

Baked barbecued baby back ribs recipe

The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 2 hrs 45 mins
Total: 3 hrs
Servings: 4 to 6 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
312 Calories
11g Fat
43g Carbs
11g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 312
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 11g 14%
Saturated Fat 4g 18%
Cholesterol 39mg 13%
Sodium 4260mg 185%
Total Carbohydrate 43g 15%
Dietary Fiber 1g 5%
Protein 11g
Calcium 61mg 5%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

When you think of ribs, you probably think of firing up the grill or smoker. But the weather doesn't always permit outdoor cooking, and sometimes you're out of charcoal or not in the mood to refill the propane tank. Enter a gadget everyone has at home: the oven. Oven-baked ribs can be made any time of the year and turn out super tender every time.

This recipe is for pork baby back ribs, which are some of the easier ribs to find at the grocery store. We call for two racks of ribs, but you can adjust the ingredients to make more or less. After removing the membrane, coat the ribs in a flavorful spice rub, cover in aluminum foil, and bake low and slow. Add your favorite sauce before baking uncovered to form a nice, sticky crust.

Serve these oven-baked ribs as a surprisingly easy weekend family meal, on game day, Father's Day, or anytime a craving for ribs strikes. Serve barbecue ribs with classic sides like potato salad, corn on the cob, macaroni and cheese, and coleslaw.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar (packed)
  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon paprika (smoked or regular)
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups barbecue sauce
  • 2 full racks baby back pork ribs (trimmed of excess fat, patted dry)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. Preheat the oven to 250 F.

    Ingredients for baked barbecue baby back ribs

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  2. Combine the brown sugar, salt, paprika, pepper, chipotle, thyme, mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, and cayenne pepper in a small bowl and mix.

    Spice rub ingredients in a bowl

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  3. Place each rack of ribs in the center of its own large piece of heavy-duty aluminum foil and apply the dry rub to each side of the two racks (more so on the meat side).

    Rib rack covered in spices on a piece of aluminum foil

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  4. Wrap each rack in foil and place the two foil-wrapped racks on a baking sheet and place in oven.

    Ribs wrapped in foil on a baking sheet

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  5. Bake for 2 hours.

    Baked ribs in foil

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  6. Remove the ribs from the oven, and, using tongs, open the foil. Place racks on one piece of the foil on a baking sheet and brush barbecue sauce on both sides. Turn up the oven temperature to 350 F.

    Rib racks coated in barbecue sauce

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  7. Return ribs to the oven. Continue cooking, brushing on more barbecue sauce occasionally, until the ribs are fork-tender and well glazed, about 30 to 45 minutes.

    Cooked ribs being painted with more sauce

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu 

  8. Remove and let rest for 15 minutes before cutting and serving.

    Baked ribs on a baking sheet

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  9. Cut ribs can be tossed in additional sauce if desired.

    Cut ribs on a cutting board

    ​The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

How to Store

  • Leftover ribs should be tightly wrapped and refrigerated. They will keep for about 3 days.
  • To reheat, wrap the ribs in aluminum foil and bake at 350 F for 15 to 20 minutes. Open up the foil and bake until warmed through, adding more barbecue sauce if desired.

Tip

For super tender ribs, remove the membrane before cooking. You can ask the butcher to do it for you, but it's also easy to do at home. Position the ribs so that they are bone-side-up. Use a butter knife to separate the thin membrane from the meat. Once you have enough pried up, use your hand to pull it off the rack.

Recipe Variations

  • Feel free to use your favorite barbecue rub or spice blend instead.
  • Switch up the flavors a bit with different kinds of sauce, like a punchy Thai barbecue sauce.