These smoked mustard dry rub ribs are a crowd-pleaser, made with your own dry rub and a simple yellow mustard binder. If you’ve never prepared dry rub ribs before, you’re in for a real treat. The beauty of dry rubs lies in their simplicity and the robust flavours they create.
This recipe includes how to smoke dry rub ribs and my simple homemade dry rub recipe for flavoursome, perfectly cooked pork ribs.
Smoked Mustard Dry Rub Ribs Recipe
Dry rub ribs are a popular choice among BBQ enthusiasts and for good reason.
The dry rub creates a flavourful crust on the outside of the ribs while allowing the meat to cook low and slow, resulting in tender, juicy ribs.
I’ve used pork ribs on this occasion, however, you can also use this same rub mix for beef ribs or other types of ribs.
Pork Dry Rub Ingredients
Having a simple yet flavourful dry rub is essential for creating delicious smoked pork ribs.
To make this homemade dry rub, you will need the following ingredients:
- 4 tablespoons of smoked Paprika
- 4 tables spoons of brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons of Garlic Powder
- 1 tablespoon of Onion Powder
- 1 Tablespoon of Mustard powder
- 4 tablespoons of Salt
- 4 Tablespoons of cracked black pepper
Simply combine all these dry ingredients in a small bowl until well mixed.
You can make up a larger batch of this pork dry rub, stored in an airtight container. It works great for rib seasoning, pork butt seasoning and plenty of other cuts of meat as well.
If you like a bit more spice, you can add chilli powder or cayenne pepper for your rib rub recipe too.
Garlic Butter Mix
For this recipe, you will also need a garlic butter to apply to your ribs before you wrap them. This will ensure that the ribs stay moist and tender while they smoke. To make this garlic butter mix, you will need:
- 1/2 cup of melted butter
- 3 cloves of minced garlic
Combine the melted butter and minced garlic in a bowl and set it aside for later use.
Or you can do as I did and freeze your garlic butter in an ice cube tray ready for use. Then place these frozen garlic butter cubes on your ribs before wrapping them in butcher paper and foil.
How To Make Dry Rub Smoked Ribs
To make your mustard dry rub ribs, follow these steps to prepare your meat and smoker and cook your smoked ribs:
Prepare The Smoker
Light briquettes and heat till ashed over. Aim to have the internal air temp of your smoker between 110 & 120 degrees Celsius.
Place your favourite wood chunk on the hot briquettes and allow the smoke to settle.
You are looking for a good consistent blue smoke.
If it’s grey and thick don’t put your meat on just yet until it’s under control.
Prepare The Ribs
Remove the membrane skin from the pork ribs using paper towels.
Pick the end of the bone until the membrane lifts up and pull it across the set of ribs.
Use a binder to coat the ribs all over.
I use American mustard as a binder, however, you can experiment with any other type of mustard and sauces of your choice.
Sprinkle the dry rub liberally all over the pork ribs covering all surfaces along the sides of the ribs.
Smoking The Ribs
Place the ribs bone side down on the smoking rack on your smoker and smoke for approximately 1.5 hours using your choice of smoking wood.
Note: I use cherry or apple for pork most of the time.
Fill the water pan or use an aluminium foil tray with water and place it in between the directly heated briquettes and the ribs. This will help with keeping the ribs moist during the cook.
Spritz your pork ribs using a spray bottle with a mix of half apple cider vinegar and half water at approximately the one-hour mark.
This will help keep the pork moist and stop the BBQ ribs from drying out.
At the 1.5hr mark wrap the ribs in pink butcher paper and aluminium foil, adding the garlic butter mix and a tablespoon of sweetener like honey or maple syrup if that is more to your taste.
Place ribs back on the smoker and cook for another hour while wrapped.
After being wrapped for an hour, unwrap the ribs, increase the temperature of your smoker to 180 degrees and cook for another 20 – 30 minutes giving the ribs that crusty BBQ burn edges that look and taste great.
Depending on your preference is how the next step proceeds – if you like a really saucy messy ribs then baste the ribs after the cook is done, during the rest step.
During rest, the sauce will bind and warm up ready for eating.
If you like a deeper, sticky BBQ taste then baste with your favourite BBQ sauce during the last unwrap step every 5-10 minutes until you have a golden dark brown colour on your ribs.
Rest for approximately 20 minutes covered, then serve with your favourite side dishes.
Dry Rib Binders
A binder is an essential way to help your dry rub adhere to the meat and create a delicious crust.
While I like using American mustard for its tangy flavour, there are a lot of different options you can try that will each have slight to larger flavour variations for your smoked ribs.
Experiment with different binders and see which one you prefer.
Here are a few different types of binders to try:
- American mustard
- Barbeque sauce
- Sweet chilli sauce
- Dijon mustard
- Olive oil
- Mustard barbeque sauces
- Or even a buffalo sauce for something with a bit more bite.
Best Smoking Woods For Pork Ribs
Choosing the right smoking wood is crucial for achieving that perfect flavour and aroma in your smoked ribs.
While everyone has their own preferences, here are some of the top recommended smoking woods for pork ribs:
- Fruitwoods: Apple, Cherry, Mango, Pear, peach
- Hardwoods: Hickory, Oak, Pecan, Mesquite
Experiment with different combinations or use a blend of these woods to find your perfect flavour profile for dry rub barbeque ribs.
Cherry and apple woods are my preferred options for smoking pork.
What To Serve With Smoked Ribs?
Smoked ribs are often the star of any BBQ menu, but it’s not a complete meal without some delicious side dishes to complement them.
Here are a few options for side dishes that go well with mustard dry rub ribs:
- Mac and Cheese
- Baked potatoes
- Grilled vegetables
- Garden salad
- Potato salad
Check out these make-ahead BBQ side dishes for some more ideas.
You can also serve your smoked ribs with your choice of sauce, whether it’s a classic barbeque sauce or something more unique like a mustard-based sauce.
Conclusion: Pork Dry Rub Ribs
Now that you have all the tips and tricks for making delicious dry rub smoked pork ribs, it’s time to fire up the smoker and start cooking! Experiment with different wood combinations, binders, and sauces to find your perfect flavour profile and enjoy the mouth-watering results of your BBQ skills.
Check out more pork recipes below:
Mustard Dry Rub Ribs
- 2 Pork rib racks
Pork Dry Rub
- 4 tbsp Smoked Paprika
- 4 tbsp Brown Sugar
- 2 tbsp Garlic Powder
- 1 tbsp Onion Powder
- 1 tbsp Mustard Powder
- 4 tbsp Salt
- 4 tbsp Cracked Back Pepper
- 1/2 cup Butter, melted
- 3 cloves Minced Garlic
Apple Cider Vinegar Spritz
- 1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1/2 cup Water
- Light briquettes and heat till ashed over. Aim to have the internal air temp of your smoker between 110 & 120 degrees Celsius.
- Combine melted butter and garlic, put in an ice cube tray and freeze until needed.
- Combine ingredients of dry rub and set aside.
- Remove the membrane skin from the pork ribs using a paper towel. Pick the end of the bone until the membrane lift up and pull across the set of ribs
- Use a binder to coat the ribs all over.
- Sprinkle the dry rub liberally all over the pork ribs covering all surfaces
- Place wood chunks on the hot briquettes and allow the smoke to settleto a consistent blue smoke. If grey and thick, wait until it's under control to put ribs on.
- Place the ribs bone side down on the smoking rack on smoker and smoke for approx 1.5hrs. Fill the water pan or use an alimumium foil tray with water and place it in between the direct briquettes and the ribs.
- Spritz ribs with a mix of half apple cider vinegar and half water at appox the 1 hr mark to keep the pork moist.
- At the 1.5hr mark, wrap the ribs in butcher paper and aluminium foil adding the frozen garlic butter mix and an optional tablespoon of sweetner like honey or maple syrup. Put back on the smoker and cook for another hour.
- After an hour, unwrap ribs, increase the temp of your smoker to 180 degrees and cook for another 20 – 30 minutes giving the ribs that crusty bbq burn edges.
- Rest for approx 20 minutes covered then serve with your favorite side.
- Once done, either baste with sauce during rest period or do this at the unwrap point, re-basting every 5 to 10 minutes if you prefer a stickier sauce texture.