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Featured Rub taste testing part deux...

Discussion in 'Pork' started by JC in GB, Sep 30, 2019.

  1. JC in GB

    JC in GB Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Happy Monday all. I did another rib taste test this weekend and am here to give my report.

    I started out with St Louis cut ribs from GFS. Trimmed and removed the membrane.

    Rib rubs used from top left to right:

    Jeff's Original Rub
    Head Country Rub
    Killer Hogs The BBQ Rub
    Slap Yo Daddy AP Rub
    Jeff's Original Rub with Lawry's seasoned salt

    BBQ Sauce used:

    Head Country Oringinal

    ribs 9-28_1.jpg

    Both Jeff's and the Killer Hogs rubs gave the best color. I think the Killer Hogs rub edged Jeff's Original out by a hair. If I added annatto to Jeff's rub, I would expect to get a nice red color like the Killer Hogs rub.

    ribs 9-28_2.jpg

    All ribs were cooked in the same manner. 3 hours naked with Cherry/Hickory smoke.
    1.5 hours in foil with brown sugar, butter, and Head Country BBQ sauce mixed with water. About 5:1 water to sauce. Rested ribs in foil for 45 minutes then back to the smoker for saucing.

    ribs 9-28_3.jpg

    Blue plate: Jeff's Original
    Red Plate: Head Country
    Yellow plate: Killer Hogs
    White Plate: Slap Yo Daddy AP

    Ribs turned out great. Perfectly done with just the right amount of smoke.

    I had 5 people judging the ribs and here are where things came out.

    Head Country and Killer Hogs edged out the other ribs by a very slight margin.

    Jeff's Original was the solid second place with every judge.

    I was surprised that the Harry Soo rub came out on the bottom as with my last taste test, Harry Soo's rub came out on top.

    I am sure the sauce is what made the difference. Last time I used Harry Soo's sauce. This time, I used Head Country.

    This has made me rethink my approach to BBQ sauces as well. Clearly the proper pairing of rub and sauce is critical to get flavor pop you are looking for in a BBQ rib.

    One of these days I will have to do a rub and sauce test to find the best combo.

    All this said, this is my second taste test throw down and I have to say this. Both batches of ribs were perfectly cooked and seasoned. Every rack was delicious. I now feel that any commercially available rub will produce satisfactory results if used properly and complimented with a matched sauce.

    I think that my next task will be to test different BBQ sauces on Jeff's Original Rub. I have found that Jeff's Original Rub is a top notch quality rub that can compete with the best out there. I also like being able to mix up my own rubs.

    Thanks for reading.

    JC in GB :emoji_cat::emoji_cat:
  2. sauced

    sauced Master of the Pit

    Thanks for the review...nice job and they all looked real good!!!
    JC in GB likes this.
  3. xray

    xray Master of the Pit

    Thanks for the write up. If I’m looking at the picture correctly, the killer hogs rub really pops with some red color (top right)

    I like watching Malcolm Reed’s YouTube videos, and everybody seems to enjoy his rubs...I’ll have to order some.

    My wife got me a grillmasters subscription box for my birthday. I wasn’t impressed with it, so we canceled it. I have no use for a handful of woodchips and a fire starter, so it’s essentially $30-$40 for one rub and one bottle of bbq sauce. Instead my wife said she’ll give me a $40 monthly stipend for a couple of months and I could go hog wild and order whatever sauces/rubs online or spend it at a hot sauce store. It’s a much better use of the money.

    So thanks again for doing this, I’m interested in the stuff you’re trying.

    And the best thing is you’re eating the results.
    JC in GB likes this.
  4. radio

    radio Master of the Pit

    Great review and food!
    The results of the rub comparisons are skewed by the addition of the sauce though. For a true rub shootout, do the ribs memphis style with dry rub only and no butter and brown sugar when foiled. A bit of apple juice does a great job of adding moisture without changing the flavor profile.
    If I walk into a bbq joint the first thing I ask is if the ribs are sauced. If they are, I say a polite thank you and walk out
    JC in GB likes this.
  5. JC in GB

    JC in GB Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    I agree that a rub shoot out should be un-sauced. The only problem is my judges all expect sauced ribs. I may try it the way you suggested if I ever do this with other pit masters. I am sure I would get far better feedback that way as well. On a personal note, I like sauced ribs better than Memphis style. Maybe I haven't gotten a hold of a proper Memphis rib yet?

    Last edited: Sep 30, 2019
  6. JC in GB

    JC in GB Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Yes, the Killer Hogs rub gives a very nice red color to the ribs. That is the rack top right on the foil.

    I took a look at the grill master boxes and came to the same conclusion you did, kind of pricey for a one and done cook.

    Now that I have a variety of rubs, I must say I like the versatility I now have for choosing what seasoning I should use for a specific purpose.

    Last night, I injected some chicken breasts with chicken stock, butter, and Harry Soo's Jailbird chicken rub. Indirect on my Weber gasser with amazn pellet tube going. Just simply delicious flavor.

    I want to try some different sauces now.

    I am hoping to find the magic combo so I can do some competitions.

    Looking forward to my next taste test throw down.

    Fueling Around likes this.
  7. tallbm

    tallbm Master of the Pit OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    For ribs have you ever done equal parts granualted Garlic, granulated or minced/dehydrated Onion, cracked black Pepper, and Paprika? Add salt separately because ribs are easy to over salt.

    That is a super simple and super tasty mix for ribs and pork butt that you can mix up on your own for cheap.
    JC in GB likes this.
  8. JC in GB

    JC in GB Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    I have done that but with mustard powder added. Yes, you are correct, that simple preparation makes some very good ribs.

    I also agree with you on monitoring salt content. Ribs that are too salty are hard to eat. Blah...

    JC :emoji_cat:
    tallbm likes this.
  9. Hawging It

    Hawging It Master of the Pit

    Killer Hogs is all I use anymore. We love it. Low salt content. Never tried Head Country but going to get some.
    JC in GB likes this.
  10. texomakid

    texomakid Smoking Fanatic

    Great test, review & write up JC. Very informative. This is where these threads come in so handy. Of that group Jeff's is the only rub I've used. I'm gonna have to branch out a little more. So many rubs.........
    JC in GB likes this.
  11. JC in GB

    JC in GB Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    I agree the number of rubs available is quite daunting. I watched you tube videos and got a few products from those guys. Cosmos-Q, Harry Soo, and Killer Hogs. I think that you would be happy with most rubs that are out there. I really want to try a pecan rub next.
  12. JC in GB

    JC in GB Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    I got the Head Country rub and sauce as a gift from a co worker. I likely would not have tried it otherwise.
    I thought both the rub and sauce were very good. The rub and sauce was fantastic on chicken! I will buy more Head Country products in the future.
  13. xray

    xray Master of the Pit

    Here’s some of the rubs I’m interested in:

    Sasquatch bbq Moss
    Caribeque Big & Bold
    And a few rubs from spiceology

    Ever try any?
    JC in GB likes this.
  14. tallbm

    tallbm Master of the Pit OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I hesitate to say this because there is a chance you may get ruined but... if you are ever feeling adventurous and ready to thoroughly enjoy a good BBQ sauce then order you some Rudy's Bar BQ Sause. It's 38floz so you get a lot for the price BUT be prepared for it to go FAST!

    Enjoy being ruined for life on this stuff :emoji_smiling_imp:
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2019
    JC in GB and xray like this.
  15. noboundaries

    noboundaries Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Great pics and write-up.

    This is just a question and not a judgment, but have you tried using less rub? On TV, the "pros" pack on the rub. I tried that once and all I could taste was rub, and it was kind of dusty in my mouth. It overpowered the meat. Now, I lightly dust my ribs so I taste the meat enhanced slightly by the smoke and the rub.
    JC in GB likes this.
  16. Hawging It

    Hawging It Master of the Pit

    What is the flavor profile. Sweet? Sweet Spicy? Smokey Sweet Spicy? Tart? HaHaHaHa!
  17. radio

    radio Master of the Pit

    PM me your address and I will mail you a few ounces of what has become my favorite rub. I always have been, and still am a fan of Jeff's rub, but after trying this rub from Big D's BBQ, I use it almost exclusively on pork.
  18. Norwester55

    Norwester55 Smoke Blower SMF Premier Member

    Heres a copy cat recipe I've been meaning to try. Tomatoey. Sounds good I might mix a batch up tomorrow. I was going to order from their site or Amazon but with shipping it'd be $20-$23 a bottle. irk.
    JC in GB likes this.
  19. tropics

    tropics Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    JC Looks good sounds like it was fun. LIKES
    JC in GB likes this.
  20. SmokinAl

    SmokinAl SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    They all look excellent from here!
    JC in GB likes this.