Baking low and slow is the secret to these fall-off-the-bone oven baked ribs. Jump to the full Fall-Off-The-Bone Oven Baked Ribs Recipe now or read on to see our tips.
Some might have the impression that ribs are one of those dishes that should be left to the “pit masters” — it’s just not true.
Baking ribs in the oven is seriously easy. All you need is time — 95% of the recipe time is sitting back and relaxing waiting while the ribs bake.
You May Also Like our recipe for Tender Bacon Bourbon Oven Baked Ribs. We bake the ribs in the oven just like these sweet and spicy ribs, but swap the sauce for our homemade bacon-bourbon barbecue sauce.
Secrets for How to Make Tender Ribs in the Oven
We learned how to make oven baked ribs from Steamy Kitchen and have never looked back! So we suggest you prep the ribs, pick out a favorite movie, open a beer and relax until done. We shared this secret for how to bake ribs with Betty Crocker a while back and just had to share with you, too!
Warning: This oven baked ribs recipe requires lots of napkins!
These baked ribs are so easy — all you need is a little time. We bake the ribs before adding any sauce, once baked you can brush on your favorite barbecue sauce or make our sweet and spicy sauce.
For the most tender ribs, we like to remove the thin membrane covering the rack. It can be a bit tough when cooked and since we really love ribs that literally fall of the bone, the membrane has to go. If you prefer that your ribs stay a bit more intact, leave it on — the ribs will still be extremely tender.
To remove it, use a butter knife to gently slide under the membrane then using your fingers pull the membrane away from the bones. If slippery or difficult to remove, use a kitchen towel to take hold of it and pull.
Then, all you need to do is season both sides with salt and pepper and cover with aluminum foil. Slide the ribs into the oven for and bake for 3 to 4 hours.
Sweet and Spicy Barbecue Sauce
You could use any bbq sauce you like, but for us, we like to cook up this quick sauce — it only takes a few minutes.
You’ll need a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until soft and translucent. Add the cumin for smokiness and stir; this just toasts the spice a bit to bring out flavor. Next, add the ketchup, sriracha, brown sugar and apple cider vinegar for a slight tang. Stir to combine, season with salt then cook for 2 minutes. Set aside in preparation for the ribs to finish baking.
You could always make a double batch of the sauce and serve with chicken, on a burger or as a dip for fries. In fact, we make a similar sauce to coat our Brown Sugar Barbecue Wings Recipe.
Another option is our Homemade Bacon Bourbon Barbecue Sauce Recipe (it’s decadent and delicious!)
Now, you just have to wait for the ribs to finish. We admit, this is the hard part — we are not the most patient individuals, but trust us, it’s worth it!
Remove the ribs from the oven, discard the aluminum foil and generously brush with sauce on both sides.
Then, for an added touch, caramelize the sauce just slightly by sliding the oven baked ribs under the broiler for a few minutes.
Recipe updated, originally posted September 2011. Since posting this in 2011, we have tweaked the recipe to be more clear and added a quick recipe video. – Adam and Joanne
- 2 to 2 1/2 lb baby back pork ribs
- Salt and black pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/4 cup finely diced red onion
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 cup ketchup, try our homemade ketchup recipe
- 1 tablespoon hot chili sauce (suggestion Sriracha)
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- salt and ground pepper to season
- Heat oven to 275° F (135° C).
- Place the ribs meat side down on a cutting board. Locate the thin membrane covering the rack. This membrane can be tough when cooked. To remove, use a knife to gently slide under the membrane then using your fingers, pull the membrane away from the bones. If slippery or difficult to remove, use a kitchen towel to take hold of it and pull.
- Season both sides of the ribs with salt and pepper then place into a large roasting pan. (It may be necessary to cut the ribs in half in order for them to fit into the pan). Cover with two sheets of aluminum foil.
- Roast for 3 1/2 to 4 hours, until the meat falls easily from the bones.
- To make the sweet and spicy sauce, heat a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until translucent. Add the cumin and stir. Next, add the ketchup, hot chili sauce, brown sugar and apple cider vinegar. Stir to combine, season with salt then cook for 2 minutes. Set aside in preparation for the ribs to finish roasting.
- Remove the ribs from the oven, discard the aluminum foil and generously brush both sides with barbeque sauce.
- Move an oven rack near to the top of the oven. Turn broiler to high and broil the ribs for 3-4 minutes, just until the barbeque sauce begins to caramelize.
- Serve and Enjoy.