Thursday, August 19, 2010

Dr Pepper Sauce for Baby Back Ribs

Vegetarians Beware. You may want to just leave this blog now because I am about to launch into singing the praises of meat, in particular, baby back ribs coated in Dr. Pepper sauce. Curtis and I have different opinions of this sauce--I think it is about the best rib sauce ever. Curtis is not convinced--I haven't figured out why, because it really doesn't get any better than this.

Before I go much farther, I must state a small disclaimer. I did not make these ribs. Curtis did. I made the Dr. Pepper sauce that went on the ribs. Curtis made the rub, marinated the ribs overnight, smoked the ribs on the Big Green Egg, and basted the ribs with the Dr. Pepper Sauce. I made the Dr. Pepper Sauce. Thus, the recipe I share is the recipe for the Dr. Pepper Sauce, not how to smoke ribs. I, unfortunately don't know how to do that. I could learn, I suppose, but barbeque is my one chance to get Curtis to cook, so why would I learn?

The Dr. Pepper Sauce gives the ribs more of a tangy flavor than an overly sweet flavor. Plus, I just love Dr. Pepper in general and anything with Dr. Pepper in it. (Yes, I am definitely becoming a full-fledged Texan--at least I don't love Big Red yet. I think that's the last step). I used Dr. Pepper made with cane sugar this time, instead of high fructose corn syrup. I don't think it made a significant taste difference--it was more just the idea of avoiding HFCS as much as possible in my life.

Enough rambling already. Without further ado, here is Dr. Pepper Sauce for Baby Back Ribs.

Dr. Pepper Sauce for Baby Back Ribs

3 T unsalted butter,
1 T onion powder (or 1 lg onion, chopped)
1 t garlic powder (or 4 cloves garlic, chopped)
12 oz (1 3/4 c) Dr. Pepper
1 c ketchup
1/2 c apple cider vinegar
1/2 c packed dark brown sugar
1/3 c Worcestershire sauce
3 T tomato paste
2 t ground ancho or New Mexican chile powder
1 t kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper

Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat. If using actual onions and garlic (not powder), add and cook until onions are translucent, about 10 minutes. If using powder, add them to the butter and all the other sauce ingredients. Cook until flavors are blended and sauce begins to thicken, about 30 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings with salt and pepper. If you used onion and garlic, let cool 10 minutes and puree. If you used powder, just cool and store in refrigerator until you are ready to use.

Use sauce to brush on ribs for the last 15 -20 minutes of smoking time to allow sauce to caramelize. Serve sauce alongside ribs.

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