Dave's Rib Rub and Pit Barbecue Ribs

Total Time
6hrs 45mins
Prep 45 mins
Cook 6 hrs

Posted for a request....this is from Famous Dave's Backroads and Sidestreets Barbecue Cookbook.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Mix rib rub ingredients (first 14 ingredients) and store in an airtight container.
  2. The night before cooking, trim the ribs of all excess fat and place them in a large plastic bag; pour in Italian dressing to coat; seal bag well, refrigerate for 4 hours, turning occasionally; remove and wipe dressing off then sprinkle each rib with pepper then 1/4 cup of the brown sugar and 1/2 cup of the onion flakes.
  3. Wrap each rib in plastic and refrigerate overnight.
  4. Next day: remove from wrap and wipe sludge off ribs; generously coat front and back of ribs with rib rub and, using your hands, rub seasoning into meat and set aside.
  5. Smoking takes 6 hours.
  6. Prepare about 15 briquettes until they're red hot; place coals on one end of grill and place 1 pound of green hickory around coals (use water-soaked hickory chunks if you can't find freshly cut hickory).
  7. Keep internal temperature of the grill at 200-225°F and add more charcoal and hickory chunks every hour as needed.
  8. Place ribs bone side down but not directly over hot coals; after 3 hours, remove ribs from grill and wrap in foil; hold in covered grill at 180-200°F for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until fork tender.
  9. Build a really hot bed of coals over the entire bottom of the grill.
  10. This goes fast- place ribs back on grill to add char flavor; when meat becomes bubbly it's done.
  11. Slather with barbecue sauce and let the heat caramelize the sauce.
  12. According to Dave, this caramelizing with the charring and slow smoking is the secret to tender, smoky ribs the way it's in the deep south.
  13. Take your time, visit with friends and drink some beer while slow cooking these ribs.
Most Helpful

First off let me say these ribs tasted so great and are such full of wonderful different flavors! We did three St. Louis cut racks of spareribs and they turned out perfect. I followed your recipe exactly except I used recipe Garlic Seasoning #115793 by Dancer for the garlic seasoning in the recipe. I wanted to let you know I checked this recipe out online and found it also took 1/4 cup of celery salt and I didn't see that ingredient listed in your recipe so you might want to check that out. Thank you for posting such a wonderful recipe Hey Jude....

Sheri-BDB April 26, 2006

The rub provides a great flavor but it's far too salty. Cut the salt and it would be very good. Haven't compared the authenticity of the recipe side-by-side with ribs from Famous Dave's.

sdf s. September 02, 2015

This is by far the worst barbecue ribs I ever had. The amount of salt used in this recipe has got to be a joke. After six hours of grilling the only flavor that comes through is salt.
Save your money and do not waste your time on this one By the way the ribs at Famous Daves were great, but this cannot be the recipe.
By mike & flo

mike & flo September 05, 2012