Finger-Licking Bourbon BBQ Pork Ribs

This is the best ribs recipe I have ever tried.

The deliciousness starts by cooking these slowly in the oven with pineapple juice – that makes the ribs ultra-tender. Then you add the marinade and BBQ – the bourbon gives them a smoky flavour, and the honey and treacle make them good and sticky.

You might be worried when you see the length of the list of ingredients below but, believe me, even if you have to buy every single item it will be worth it (that is what I had to do when I first tried this recipe). I’ve made these a few times and they have been a hit on every occasion, including with people who don’t usually enjoy ribs.

A great thing about this recipe is that you can do most of the work the day before you want to eat, then they take just 25 minutes to finish off on the BBQ. I love to serve these either with a salad and crusty bread, or with mashed potatoes and green beans.

I found this recipe on Epicurious and have changed the method only very slightly. To the person that originally came up with it, I say a big thank you.

Ingredients – serves 4:

  • 2 racks of pork ribs (‘baby back’ if you can get them), approx 1.25kg/2.8 lbs
  • 1 cup pineapple juice, preferably unsweetened


  • 1/4 cup bourbon (I used Jack Daniels as that is what my husband buys)
  • 5 tbsp honey (cheap honey is fine, it doesn’t need to be fancy)
  • 1 and 1/2 tbsp Hoisin sauce
  • 1 tbsp french mustard (or Dijon if you have it)
  • 1 tbsp plum sauce
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons treacle
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce (I used Lea & Perrins)
  • 1 teaspoon chilli sauce (I used Sambal Olek)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  • Heat your oven to 150C/130C fan forced/300F.
  • You will need a large baking tray and two large pieces of good quality aluminium foil which are each big enough to enclose one of your racks of ribs.
  • Place the foil on the tray and then place your ribs on each piece of foil. Fold up the foil to form a boat shape around each rack of ribs – make sure to fold up the ends of the foil as well as the sides.
  • Once you have your boat-shaped foil around your ribs, pour 1/2 cup of the pineapple juice over each of the rib racks. Lift each rack slightly to allow the pineapple juice to get underneath, then put back down.
  • Now fold up the foil completely to enclose each rack, ensuring that the seals are good,(this keeps the pineapple juice in the parcels whilst the ribs cook).
  • Place the tray in the oven and cook for one hour, then turn the tray around and cook for another hour.
  • Remove from the oven, open the foil parcels and, if you have cooked the ribs in advance, leave to cool before storing in the fridge in an airtight container. (Tip: you can cut the racks into pieces of about 4 ribs if that makes storing easier.)
  • You can also make the marinade in advance – put all the ingredients in a screw-top glass jar and shake to mix. If you don’t have a spare jar then put the ingredients into a small bowl, whisk together and then cover with cling wrap.
  • When you are ready to cook the ribs, heat your BBQ to a medium heat – use the flat plate if you have one, as that will help keep the marinade on the ribs.
  • If you have not done so already, cut the racks into pieces (about 4 ribs per piece).
  • Using a basting brush, cover each rib piece liberally with the marinade. Reserve the remaining marinade so you can continue to baste as the ribs cook on the BBQ.
  • Grill the ribs, frequently turning and basting with the sauce for about 25 minutes, or until the marinade on the ribs goes sticky and a deep golden brown.
  • Serve the ribs on a large plate with your choice of sides. You will also need plenty of napkins or even a finger bowl 🙂
  • Enjoy!

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9 Responses to Finger-Licking Bourbon BBQ Pork Ribs

  1. That rack of ribs looks extremely good…

  2. Finger licking good- indeed! What is treacle?

  3. Brian says:

    Having made these myself, I can confirm that they are the best baby backs I have tasted.

  4. Pingback: 4th July: BBQ Recipe round-up | Recipe Adaptors

  5. Pingback: BBQ Ginger Beer Pork Ribs | Recipe Adaptors

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