Rodney’s Grilled Ribs

Rodney Scott
Pitmaster, Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ
Charleston, SC
Rodney's Grilled Ribs Ingredients:
  • 3 slabs of pork spareribs, membranes removed (membrane: piece of tissue that is attached to the underside of pork ribs)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp Rodney’s Rib Rub Seasoning (see ingredients and steps below)
  • 2 to 3 cups Rodney’s BBQ Sauce (see ingredients and steps below)
Rodney’s Rib Rub Seasoning Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup MSG
  • 1/4 cup ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup sweet paprika
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 Tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • Quantity: makes 2 cups (recipe can be halved if preferred)
Rodney’s BBQ Sauce Ingredients:
  • 8 cups distilled white vinegar
  • 1 whole lemon, thinly sliced, seeds removed
  • 1/4 cup ground black pepper
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 Tbsp dried red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • Quantity: makes 8 cups or 1/2 gallon (recipe can be halved if preferred)
Serves Six
Rodney’s Rib Rub Seasoning Instructions:
  1. Mix all the ingredients for the rub and place them in an airtight container.
  2. Cover, and store in a cool, dry place until ready to use.
Rodney’s BBQ Sauce Instructions:
  1. Pour the vinegar in a small pot, and warm it over medium-high heat. When the vinegar reaches 150°F on an instant-read thermometer (about 5 minutes), add the lemon slices and continue to cook until the lemons are slightly translucent, about 10 minutes more.
  2. Whisk in the black pepper, cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, and sugar. Continue to cook over medium-high heat for about 10 minutes, until the sugar is completely dissolved, and the sauce reaches 190°F.
  3. Remove from the heat and allow to completely cool before using. In the meantime, move onto the ribs.
Rodney’s Grilled Ribs Instructions:
  1. Heat grill to between 200°F and 250°F.
  2. Season each slab with Rodney’s Rib Rub Seasoning, roughly 1 1/2 Tbsp per rib. Apply evenly, and do not rub in. Make sure you get under the flap, the little piece of meat that dangles on the bone side of the rib.
  3. Place the seasoned ribs on the hot grill with the bone side down and the fatty end toward the middle of the grill, which is the hotter area. Doing so ensures that the thicker part of the rib gets cooked properly. Close the grill lid.
  4. Grill for approximately 1.5 hours undisturbed. Then open the grill cover, and look for caramelization or mahogany brown on the bone. Flip the ribs to the meat side down, and continue cooking for another hour at 200-250°F.
  5. Once you have the caramelization, you are ready to use the “mop, flip, mop” method that Chef Rodney uses on all meats. Brush the visible side with Rodney’s BBQ Sauce. Flip the ribs over so that the meat is now bone side up. Mop the ribs again. Close the grill.
  6. Bring the grill back up to 200-250°F. Cook the ribs until they have reached an internal temperature of 160°F, or about 1-1.5 hours depending on grill heat. Then they are ready to be served!
  • Recipe is based on a charcoal grill, but a gas grill works as well.
  • For a charcoal grill, Rodney recommends wood “hardwood lump charcoal” to heat the grill.
  • Leftover rub can be used as an all-purpose seasoning for other meats, on potato salad and more! It can be stored in an airtight container at room temp for 6 months.
  • If you have used a brush to put the sauce on raw meat—dipping the same brush back into the sauce—do not save and re-use the sauce.
  • Unused, leftover sauce can be kept in the refrigerator for up to one month.