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Looking for A better dry rub for my babybacks

I love to cook pork ribs and most people love my finished product but i'm not happy with them. i feel that they can be better and i know that the dry rub is the area that needs most improvement. i'm using just a basic rub of the common seasoning mixture of sugar, cumin, chili powder, onion salt, pepper, salt and red pepper. i'm not sure what direction to go in to give it more charactor. i'm looking to have one that starts sweet and finishes spicy that will compliment the wet sauce. can anyone point me in the right direction?

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  1. You'll be happier developing your own rubs..but you might wanna add garlic and black pepper for sure...Coriander and/or Jamaican Pepper if you're adventurous........

    Have Fun!

    1. Go back to basics and start with kosher salt and black pepper. After you've done a few racks with this Dalmatian rub, add other ingredients to suit your tastes. You may be surprised and find that you prefer just the Dalmatian rub. Pork is quite a magical meat on it's own, ya know...

      1. I add a very small amount of ground cinnamon and ground cloves to my pork bbq rub. Not a lot, just enough to detect a hint of something different.

        1. SMOKED PAPRIKA!

          Yeah I know all caps is bad, but it is my wonder herb/spice.

          Hot paprika adds a good bit of heat on the back end. I got mine at an italian store.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Bryn

            Yes, I use sweet pimenton, which is smoked spanish paprika. It's delicious. Do you leave the dry rub on for at least a day? I find it helps a lot with more flavor in the meat.

          2. I know this is cheating and I often make homemade, but sometimes I'll use Trader Joe's chipotle seasoning mixed with a TBS of brown sugar. I rub it on, wrap them in plastic overnight and bring to room temp before smoking them for an hour or two. I agree heartily with the recommendations for smoked paprika.

            1 Reply
            1. re: mcf

              Penzey's has some great BBQ rubs. I used to make my own all the time, but their's is so good and convienent. I like the Galena Rub for Baby Back Ribs. I let them sit all day in the rub and then cook those puppies up, OH YEA RIBS!!!

            2. I always put some ground coffee and some brown sugar in mine, which gives it an added depth of flavor that we love. (Other ingredients: kosher salt, black pepper, onion and garlic powders, dry mustard, smoked paprika, ancho chili powder).

              2 Replies
              1. re: nomadchowwoman

                Bingo! Coffee was going to be my suggestion. The Coffee BBQ from the shop at work at is all I use for ribs anymore. Overnight in ziplock in the fridge. Flank steaks too.

                1. re: Scott D

                  Coffee has become my secret ingredient, sort of. Several years ago, a friend and I made a very laborious day of making crawfish bisque (w/200 stuffed heads), using her recipe, which I knew would be too tomato-ey (but I didn't speak up); in trying to fix it, I hit upon the idea of adding brewed coffee, which cut the sweetness and added another layer of flavor--and saved the bisque. Since then, I've used it in braises, soups, and my BBQ sauce. I use it in my favorite brownies--well, I use espresso powder mixed with a bit of water. I got the idea of putting ground coffee in my rubs when I saw someone (probably on the Food Network) rubbing it with brown sugar onto a ham.

              2. Your base rub is a good start. Mine includes all those plus Colman's dry mustard, paprika, garlic powder, and oregano. And don't skimp on the cayenne!

                1. thank you everyone for the suggestions and ideas. i really appreciate you taking the time to help me out.