Peachy Sweet Spare Ribs

Are you in a rib nut?  Do you have your method down to a science so your ribs come out perfect every time?  While the ribs are perfect are you starting to get tired of cooking them the exact same way every time?  Want to grill outside the box and try something new?  Then I give you Peachy Sweet Spare Ribs.  Well, my dad gives you peachy sweet spares.  I’m just giving you the intro.  I’ll hand it off to him now…

This effort is a tribute to Ray Lampe, Dr. BBQ, author of three books and a celebrity chef at a recent event attended by Grillin’ Fools Scott and Greg. I purchased his book, the NFL Gameday Cookbook, which he was kind enough to sign for me. Dr. BBQ was competing against two other celebrity chefs and we had the opportunity to sample some of his efforts. The ribs were quite tasty and I was very intrigued by his dessert offering – more to come on that in a future post.

Recently I’ve done a lot with Baby-Backs so for the sake of variety I decided to apply his recipe to St. Louis Style Ribs which are simply trimmed pork spare ribs with the rib tip removed, and sort of appropriate since the Grillin Fools hail from in and around St. Louis. The ingredients shown for the rub accommodate six sides of ribs so there was a bit leftover since only one side was being prepared for this posting:


I allowed the ribs to come to room temperature before skinning the membrane and applying the rub.  Click here to see how to skin ribs

Peachy Sweet Spare Ribs Ingredients:

1/2 cup of your favorite rub—I used some KC Sweet and Smoky Rub that I prepared in the past and kept in an airtight container which is comprised of the following ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup of turbinado Sugar or Sugar in the Raw.
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup paprika
  • 1/4 cup seasoned salt
  • 1/4 cup smoked salt or hickory-smoked salt
  • 1/4 cup onion salt
  • 1/4 cup celery salt
  • 2 tbsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp mustard powder
  • 1 tsp poultry seasoning
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

***Editor’s note ~ as you can see the rub above has a lengthy ingredient list which is why we Grillin’ Fools mix up extra whenever we make it.  The stuff keeps for weeks in an airtight container or plastic bag.***

These ingredients were mixed and patted onto the ribs:


Additional ingredients required, to be applied later, were as follows:

  • 1 1/2 cups of peach preserves
  • 3/4 cup of apple juice
  • 6 tbsp. brown sugar

The grill was set for indirect method with coals on the left and ribs on the right:


The left thermometer shows 400 degrees and the right is steady at 250 so the ribs are ready to go on.  With this method you are looking for between 275 and 300.  The thermometer is about 8 inches farther from the coals than where the ribs will be on the grill which will put the temp right at about 275:


As luck would have it I just happened to have on hand a bag of Peach wood chunks and thought that would be an appropriate match since I’m doing peach ribs:


Dr. BBQ suggested a combination of Cherry and Hickory which really appealed to me so I’ll give that mixture a try in a future episode.

I really prefer using chunks instead of chips for smoking. The chips tend to disappear rather quickly and increase you expense but then buying chunks isn’t cheap either. Recently friends and relatives have been providing us with chunks of different fruit trees that have been cut down or trimmed which is a bonus for any griller.

***Editor’s note ~ For those of you that are not seasoned vets at grilling ribs please pay special attention to the rib bones in the pictures below.  The bones are what let you know when the ribs are done.  As more and more of the bones peak out from the meat the closer the ribs are to being done.  In the pic below the bones closest to the fire are sticking out but no other bones sticking out.  This indicates that the one end is cooking much faster than the other end which needs to be corrected.  As you look through the pics you watch the progression of those bones.  With a little practice you will be able to tell when ribs are done simply by looking at the bones rather than touching them or actually cutting them open to see.***

Here’s a photo of the ribs about 45 minutes into grilling:


One edge is pulling back from the bone a bit so I flipped the side around then added another peach chunk and a little charcoal to the fire to keep the temp constant:


Here are a couple shots of the ribs about an hour and 45 minutes in:


And the flip side:


Now it’s time for the next step, applying the peach preserves and brown sugar. The ribs are nestled in three sheets of heavy duty foil and coated on the meat side with the preserves and sprinkled with brown sugar:


The apple juice is added and the foil sealed and back to the grill for 45 minutes to finish:


A few coals were added to maintain temperature.

Here are the ribs after 45 minutes in the foil:

Peachy Sweet Spare Ribs

After two and one half hours of total cooking time thus far the ribs were caramelized briefly over the direct fire:

Peachy Sweet Spare Ribs

The ribs were returned to the foil and allowed to rest off the heat while I worked on my side dishes.  Side dishes for this meal included sweet potatoes as well as sugar snap peas with mushrooms.  Both of which were done on the grill.  The write up and pictures of that preparing them can be found by clicking here.

After the ribs rested for 8-10 minutes they were sliced:

Peachy Sweet Spare Ribs

And plated:

Peachy Sweet Spare Ribs

The ribs were peachy, sweet and sticky as promised and paired with a spicy red.

Kudos to Dr. BBQ for a great, and easy, recipe which is certainly worth a try if you want to change things up a bit when grilling ribs.

Also, if you would like to see how those sides were prepared on the grill, click here.

If you have any questions about the above dish please feel free to comment below or email me.

For more rib recipes click here.

Greg Thomas

Greg Thomas

Greg Thomas

Latest posts by Greg Thomas (see all)

one comment

I tried this and the ribs were fantastic! I added some crushed red pepper flakes and also cooked the ribs in the foil meat side down. I also ommitted the apple juice (not intentionally). Thanks for sharing!


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