Asian Dry Rub Baby Back Pork Ribs

By • December 31, 2013 • 14 Comments

Author Notes: My famiglia loves spices of all kinds, and I created this recipe using some of our most flavorful favorites. These ribs are a fast weeknight meal or great appetizer or snack food for entertaining.cucina di mammina

Food52 Review: WHO: Cucina di mammina is a wine lover and spice fiend who learned to cook as soon as she could walk.
WHAT: A rib recipe that’s weeknight-appropriate and satisfyingly spicy.
HOW: Cut the ribs, coat them in a mixture of turmeric, cardamom, garlic powder, ginger, and hot pepper, and let them marinate in the fridge. When you’re ready to roast, put the ribs into a hot oven until they’re golden-brown, crispy, and tender.
WHY WE LOVE IT: We were used to roasting entire racks of ribs, but this recipe introduced us to a new technique: Cutting the ribs before they’re coated in spices and roasted in the oven results in meat that’s crispy on the outside, tender on the inside, and uniformly flavorful.

Serves 2 to 4

For the baby back rack of pork ribs:

  • 1 large rack of baby back pork ribs, cut into segments
  • Sea salt
  • Black pepper
  • Vegetable oil

For the dry rub spice mix:

  • 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons turmeric
  • 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons cardamom
  • Cayenne pepper to taste
  1. Cut the ribs into individual ribs and place them on a flat work surface covered with wax paper. Coat with a bit of olive oil (about 1 tablespoon) and season both sides with sea salt and pepper to taste. Mix all of the remaining spices together in a small bowl and rub the spice blend on all sides of the ribs until evenly covered. Place the ribs in a well-sealed plastic bag and refrigerate for at least 2 to 3 hours (overnight is best).
  2. Remove the ribs from the fridge about 15 to 20 minutes before you want to roast them, and bring to room temperature. Line a metal baking sheet with aluminum foil and place the ribs on the foil.
  3. Set oven to anywhere between 400 to 425° F and roast the ribs until golden brown and cooked through (the time will vary depending on the heat of your oven and the thickness of the ribs, but start checking around 40 minutes). For crispier ribs, place them under the broiler a minute or two before they're finished. Remove from oven to cool and serve.
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Comments (14) Questions (0)


1 day ago Susan W

I actually don't like fall off the bone rib meat. I like it to have a little chew. I have never cooked ribs any other way than low and slow, so I am looking forward to trying this. My favorite part of a bone in prime rib roast are the ribs the next morning, so I am picturing them similar to that. We shall see.


1 day ago cucina di mammina

Thanks for the comments Susan W. I do so hope you like this version, please let me know as I love getting feedback from such a great group of talented cooks and foodies.


1 day ago nancy essig

I can't see these being very tender. The high heat would toughen them it seems. Please explain


1 day ago YenWhite

i agree. in my experience, a low and slow method would be more successful in achieving that.


1 day ago cucina di mammina

Ciao YenWhite,
These ribs are cooked at a higher heat to achieve a more meaty, somewhat toothy texture, vs. the slow cooked softer, fall off the bone texture. You can certainly choose to cook them in the slower method, but my famiglia prefers the original version. It's all about your personal taste and what you enjoy the most :)


1 day ago cucina di mammina

thanks for the question on the high heat vs. slow cooked method. my famiglia in italy would cook ribs like these over an open pit fire and the results were delicious! They are definitely different than your soft, tender fall off the bone variety but me and my famiglia and friends love this version for a meatier bit.

It is crucial, of course to purchase a high quality cut of ribs from your local meat purveyor and we love a good mixture of meat to fat to maintain best flavor and
texture. Hope this helps!


about 22 hours ago nancy essig

Good thought about fattier meat. The pork in super markets is so lean as to be inedible. I will go to a farmer. Thanks. These look wonderful


about 21 hours ago cucina di mammina

You are more than welcome, nancy essig :) I wish I could find more local farmers in my area who were raising heritage and organic style pigs and chickens. The flavor is so much more pure and healthy for you too!


2 days ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

What an inspiration. Great combination of spices. Congrats! ;o)


1 day ago cucina di mammina

grazie tante AntoniaJames! what a lovely compliment and i hope you try these for yourself and let me know what you think.


2 days ago Susan W

I can't wait to make this. Personally, I love powdered ginger in a rub. I do make a Korean wet marinated beef short rib that uses fresh ginger, but I have found that I prefer dry rubs on ribs. I also have always cooked ribs low and slow, so this method will be fun to try. It sounds like the ribs will have more of a "tooth" to them which I love.


1 day ago cucina di mammina

thanks for the comment Susan W! I too love the mix of spices and often change it up depending on my mood. And yes, these ribs are not the slow, fall off the bone kind but still tender with a great meaty bite.


5 months ago winejew

I'm not sure about this one. I made the dry rub and I hesitate to use it. It has a strange smell. I think the ground ginger overwhelms the aroma. If you're going for an asian character, fresh ginger would be far better. And I question the combination of both garlic and ginger powder.


5 months ago cucina di mammina

You can certainly use fresh ginger if you prefer here. I always tell my followers to adjust the amounts according to their personal taste, less garlic, more or less ginger etc. I do not use fresh ginger here as I prefer a true dry rub, but you can use fresh ginger if you prefer; it will however be more of a paste then a rub that you will need to distribute evenly before roasting.