Making a rub for ribs isn’t really all that hard. You simply need the basic ingredients, a grinder of some kind to mix the ingredients together.
There are two kinds of grinders that I think are useful
- a Mortar and Pestle (this is one of the rock bowls with a hand-held grinder)
- a coffee grinder ( I use a Braun Grinder, but this KitchenAid Grinder would work fine as well).
There are advantages to both however I usually use my Braun grinder as it is fast. The main problem is that if I need more than about 1 cup of rub for ribs, I have to do several batches. I also find that a mortar and pestle tends to produce richer flavours since the spices are being ground up rather than chopped up.
To make a rub for ribs, simply put the ingredients you want into the grinder and chop them up until they are a good consistency. You need to pay some attention to this as you can end up with a really fine powder in an electric grinder. It is much better to do the grinding in pulses rather than full speed for a minute!
Also, some spices need less grinding than others, and so you will need to put them in at different times. If you are using any fresh herbs or spices, you will want to add them towards the end as they will add moisture to the rub and can make things a little sticky.
Here is how I make a very fast rub for ribs with my trusy Braun Grinder. It uses the Spicy Dry Rub for Ribs recipe I posted earlier.
I put these ingredients in first:
6 tablespoons paprika
2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons Onion Powder
1 teaspoon Cayanne pepper
and pulse them together for just a few seconds to get them nicely mixed together. Then I add the
3 teaspoons ground black pepper
I grind this up so it is still coarse and chunky. I don’t take it all the way to a powder because I like some texture, and the sharpness of the pepper corns and the sea salt I add in next help the rub cut into the ribs for slightly better penetration of the rub’s flavours. I then add in the
3 tablespoons kosher or sea salt
And only pulse this very briefly to get it mixed in with everything else, but not losing the big grains.
I then dump it out into a small bowl, make sure the rub is well mixed, and then rub it onto the ribs quite vigorously. It is best if the ribs are closer to room temperature when you do this. Also be sure to remove the membrane on the ‘bonier’ side of the ribs to be sure the rub gets maximum contact with all the ribs.
Cover the ribs with plastic wrap (or put in a sealable container) and let them get tasty in the fridge for a few hours before they hit the smoker.