To Rub or Not to Rub?

Discussion in 'Pork' started by valien, Apr 2, 2010.

  1. valien

    valien Fire Starter

    Hi all,

    Getting ready to do 3 racks of baby backs this Saturday for the family. I've done ribs twice before and have used a nice rub (Coach's Low Country rub). It does give a slight kick to the ribs (which I like).

    Here's my question - I was thinking of doing a rack or so without any rub whatsoever. If I go that route, what do you suggest I put on the ribs? A little salt or pepper? Or will it taste any good just plain? Anyone have any thoughts on a nice non-spicy rub?


  2. rdknb

    rdknb Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    At the least salt and pepper. You can also add brown sugar to your normal rub to sweeten it up
  3. smokebuzz

    smokebuzz Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Salt and pepper is a good call for any meat, you could add some sauce if you feel you need it after you cook them. I like "naked" ribs at times, just finish with butter the last 1/2 hour, no other seasoning.
  4. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    At minimum use salt, pepper, and garlic.
  5. caveman

    caveman Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    I can tell you from experience, you really, really want to put some kind of seasoning or sauce or something on those ribs. Before I came here, I used to boil my ribs. [​IMG] (GASP!!!!! I had no clue. I hang my head in shame.)

    But now, I can hold my head up high because I have learned TWO things in life: Never boil your ribs & Always, always season them. Good Luck!!! [​IMG]
  6. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Look for a pork marinade recipe and try that- maybe something similar to what you find in Chinese or Asian cooking. If you do go that route be sure to give us an update and a couple of pics[​IMG]
  7. Experimentation is a good thing...Some say it's the mother of invention!
    If you wanna "see" what they taste like naked then do one slab that way...If you "see" what they taste like with only S&P then do that...Maybe you could take one slab and do both...S&P 1/2 of it...leave the other 1/2 naked...It's a good place to start experimenting...Over time you will develop your own rub recipes which should be your long term goal...Short term? Just ...

    Have Fun & Enjoy!!
  8. valien

    valien Fire Starter

    Well, I did 3 racks today.

    1 1/2 with my normal Coach's Low Country Rub and 1 1/2 with just salt, pepper and some brown sugar.

    Let them marinate all night and chucked them in at noon today.

    Smoker kept a steady 230-240 for the whole 6 hours which was awesome. Did the 2-2-1 technique and here are the results...

    Everyone loved them. Between the 6 of us all but 2-3 ribs were downed at dinner. I think this was my best effort yet (3rd time smoking ribs). What made it really smooth today is that I put the smoker in my garage instead of the back porch so there was very little wind to disrupt the temperature.

    Can't wait to smoke again!

    Link to the pictures on Flickr -->

  9. rdknb

    rdknb Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    nothing is better then the guest enjoying what we cook, congrats
  10. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Now isn't that why we do this is to feed the people we love and care for. I know thats why I do it so they enjoy the food and I like to feed people too. I get all giddy when someone just looks up with that face and they need not say anything I know.[​IMG] But did you smoke one naked??? Now I would also watch pitting the smoker in the garage for the fumes might get to be too much. I'm sure you are being safe I just wanted to say that.
  11. scpatterson

    scpatterson Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Im a very simple rub prson myself and usually only use Salt, Pepper, Onion powder....Nothing else..

    Those look awesome.
  12. valien

    valien Fire Starter

    I had it at the entrance of the garage. The damper was outside and the light breeze pulled 95% of the smoke out of the garage so it wasn't an issue.

    I did enjoy the garage setup cause I was able to pull up a chair and read a good bit of history book I'm trying to finish up.

    I did smoke 1 1/2 racks 'naked' - well, naked in a sense of no big rub - just salt, pepper, and some brown sugar.
  13. so i dont know if this is a bit of a tangent but i was wondering, for the salt that is included in rubs, is there usually a specific type of salt that is preferred?
  14. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Sea salt or Kosher salt have the best taste IMHO. Some grind it to a smaller crystal size. I don't use salt in any of my rubs, but occasionally dress up a steak with Kosher salt.
  15. thanks ! one more question though, on some rub recipes i see that they ask specifically for non-iodized salt...why is that?
  16. raptor700

    raptor700 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    That is a Great question Duggy, I have asked myself the same thing. I'm guessing the iodine in the salt toughens the meet, almost like a curing process  [​IMG]    I know someone will answer this age old question for both of us!!![​IMG]
  17.   I just did a rack of baby backs last weekend, with absolutely no seasoning, and it turned out great.  The smoke gave it all the flavor it needed.  (My wife doesn't react well to most types of sugars, and I haven't run across a rub without sugar yet, so I haven't used one.) 

    Okay, technically I did mop it once with sauce about half an hour before it was done, just because I like the moisture.  (The wife does okay with barbeque sauce, go figure.)  I had sauce on the side during consumption, but found myself taking more bites without dipping than with. 
  18. I had my sis a bday party last friday and smoked sprares using cherry and lump. Just created any kind of rub. WHen I took the ribs in to cut and plate them I forgot to put suace on them. They were the first things gone. I prefer a good rub over sauce now
  19. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    Things that make ya go Hmmmmmmmmm.

      None of my rubs or seasoning blends have salt in them .

     But when cooking w/ salt i have allways used kosher or sea salt .

     The reason is that the crystals are larger and my old eyes can see how much i have applied to what i am salting.

     as for iodized salt , i don't know why it's not used by most folks?
  20. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

     Apparently some think that iodized salt in rubs effects the taste of the cooked meat. This is a very good resource on salt-
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2010

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