Grilled/ Main Dishes/ Pork/ Seasonal

St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs

This post has been sponsored by Kingsford®. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Who is ready to fire up the grill? *raises hand* This recipe for St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs is at the top of my list of all-time grilling faves. First, in true STL style, we start with meaty pork ribs. Then, we sprinkle them with an easy homemade spice rub. And of course, we make them lip-smacking good with a signature bbq sauce. Hungry yet?

St Louis Style BBQ RibsThis recipe for St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs is lip-smacking good. Slow roasted with charcoal, this rib recipe features a homemade spice rub and sauce.

St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs

BBQ ribs are one of my all-time favorite things to eat. I love the sweet + sticky sauce on the tender, spiced pork. Plus, the meatiness of the St. Louis style ribs makes them a hit with my family.

St. Louis Style ribs are from the meatier belly section of pork. A butcher trims them down by cutting away the cartilage and breastbone, leaving a flatter, smaller rack of ribs. They are a perfect cut of pork to cook in the oven, roast, slow smoke, and grill. Plus, they are typically less expensive than their counterpart, the baby back rib.

Kingsford ® Original Charcoal has partnered with Major League Baseball to create a fantastic cookbook featuring 30 recipes. There’s one for every team. Including our recreation of their St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs for the St. Louis Cardinals.

We are proud to create this recipe using Kingsford Charcoal from Kroger. It is our preferred charcoal we use for all of our grilling recipes. It gives our food that signature smoky taste we love. Kingsford lights faster* and burns longer** than competitive brands, giving you the ultimate grilling experience, every time.

*Compared to nationally available conventional charcoal in the USA

**Compared to the leading store brand charcoal in the USA

St Louis Style BBQ Ribs slow smoked with Kingsford Original Charcoal from Kroger

Ingredients Needed:

  • St. Louis Style Ribs
  • Kingsford ® Original Charcoal
  • Brown sugar
  • Spices (including paprika, onion powder, coriander, cayenne, and oregano)
  • Ketchup
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Molasses or honey
  • Seasonings (including mustard and liquid smoke)

Although you can buy pre-made spice rub and bbq sauce, we are going to share two easy recipes to make your own. Everything tastes better when it is homemade, right?

TIP: The spice rub and bbq sauce recipe in this post makes enough to keep for later. Just seal in a jar and store.

A jar of homemade spice rub

Before you get started, the first step is to prep the ribs. You can ask your butcher to do this for you, but it is easy to do at home. Using a sharp knife, trim away any excess fat. Then, carefully remove the “silver skin” membrane on the bone side of the ribs.

To do this, loosen one end of the membrane with a knife. Hold the membrane with a paper towel because this helps you get a good grip. Next, gently pull the skin away from the bones.

How to trim St. Louis style ribs before bbq

Ribs ready? Now we are ready to get started.

Two racks of St. Louis style pork ribs generously coated with homemade spice rub

How to Make St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs:

  1. First, in a small jar, combine brown sugar, onion powder, paprika, dry mustard, garlic powder, oregano, coriander, cayenne pepper, salt, and black pepper.
  2. Reserving 2 tablespoons of the rub for the sauce, sprinkle both sides of the trimmed ribs generously with the spice rub. Break up any chunks of brown sugar with your fingers.
  3. Next, build a charcoal fire using Kingsford Charcoal for indirect grilling. Place the coals on only one side of the grill. Leave the other side of the grill with nothing. Preheat the grill to about 250 degrees Fahrenheit.
  4. Then place the seasoned ribs MEAT SIDE UP on the blank side of the grill. Cook for 3 – 4 hours until the ribs are tender.
  5. Every 15 – 30 minutes, ROTATE the ribs to ensure even cooking. DO NOT FLIP. The ribs will cook the entire time MEAT SIDE UP.
  6. While the ribs are cooking, prepare the sauce on the stovetop or grill. Combine the ketchup, reserved spice rub, water, vinegar, brown sugar, molasses, mustard, Worcestershire, and liquid smoke.
  7. Stir to combine and bring the sauce to a low boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat, simmer, and stir occasionally until the sauce has thickened to desired consistency. Set aside.
  8. During the last 30 minutes of cooking, baste the ribs two or three times with the bbq sauce.
  9. Finally, transfer ribs to a serving platter. Cover loosely with foil and let rest for 10 minutes. Carve the bbq ribs and serve!

TIP: Use a grill with an thermometer for best results. You want to keep the grill temperature between 250 – 325 degrees Fahrenheit during the cooking process. If the grill gets too hot or too cold, adjust the air flow using the grill vents.

A charcoal fire

St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs are the perfect grilling recipe on a weekend afternoon, listening to the game on the radio, or tossing the ball around with the kids. The secret is to enjoy the day and take your time while the ribs are slow roasting over the charcoal fire.

BBQ Ribs roasting over indirect charcoal grill

More Grilling Recipes to Try:

Wild Blackberry BBQ Sauce

Honey Bourbon Pork Steaks

Grilled Fresh Salmon Patties

This recipe for St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs is lip-smacking good. Slow roasted with charcoal, this rib recipe features a homemade spice rub and sauce.

Using the sweet and spicy rub on the bbq ribs helps lock in moisture and gives the ribs a nice bark on the outside. Then, we really ramp up the bbq flavor with the easy bbq sauce recipe.

If there is one thing we know about St. Louis Style, they love their sports and their big barbecue flavors!

Slow roasted with charcoal, this rib recipe features a homemade spice rub and sauce.

Be sure to check out this savings offer from Kroger and Kingsford Charcoal. You can find it near the paper goods and housewares section at your local store.

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St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs | Buy This Cook That

Tips + Tricks on the best BBQ Ribs:

  • Look for nice, meaty racks of ribs. Ask your butcher to trim them for you if you prefer.
  • Don’t forget to remove the membrane on the back of the ribs. This is very important and results in better ribs that everyone will enjoy.
  • Make up the spice rub and bbq sauce ahead of time if you’d like. This way all you have to do is heat the grill, sprinkle the ribs, and go.
  • Use a grill thermometer to monitor the temperature of your charcoal grill. The key to tender juicy ribs is to cook them low and slow.
  • Serve these ribs with your favorite cook out side dishes: baked beans, potato salad, and corn on the cob. Talk about a feast!
  • Do not flip the ribs while they are cooking. This method of grilling the ribs requires they stay meat side up at all times.
  • You can tell the ribs are done when they bend easily when you pick them up with tongs in the center of the rack of ribs.
  • Make clean up easy and keep plenty of wet naps on hand. Because these ribs are deliciously messy!

Which MLB team is your favorite? Check out Kingsford’s MLB Inspired Cookbook here to find your team’s recipe. But it will be hard to beat these St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs, don’t you think?

St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs
5 from 1 vote
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St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs

This recipe for St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs is lip-smacking good. Slow roasted with charcoal, this rib recipe features a homemade spice rub and sauce.

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword BBQ ribs
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Resting Time 15 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 30 minutes
Servings 8 Servings
Calories 1076 kcal
Author Buy This Cook That

Buy This

  • 2 racks St. Louis style ribs trimmed, membrane removed

For the Spice Rub

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

For the BBQ Sauce

  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup molasses or honey
  • 2 tablespoons prepared mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke seasoning
  • Plus 2 Tablespoons of prepared spice rub

Cook That

  1. First, in a small jar, combine brown sugar, onion powder, paprika, dry mustard, garlic powder, oregano, coriander, cayenne pepper, salt, and black pepper.

  2. Reserving 2 tablespoons of the rub for the sauce, sprinkle both sides of the trimmed ribs generously with the spice rub. Break up any chunks of brown sugar with your fingers.

  3. Next, build a charcoal fire using Kingsford Charcoal for indirect grilling. Place the coals on only one side of the grill. Leave the other side of the grill with nothing. Preheat the grill to about 250 degrees Fahrenheit.

  4. Then place the seasoned ribs MEAT SIDE UP on the blank side of the grill. Cook for 3 – 4 hours until the ribs are tender.

    Every 15 – 30 minutes, ROTATE the ribs to ensure even cooking. DO NOT FLIP. The ribs will cook the entire time MEAT SIDE UP.

  5. While the ribs are cooking, prepare the sauce on the stovetop or grill. Combine the ketchup, reserved spice rub, water, vinegar, brown sugar, molasses, mustard, Worcestershire, and liquid smoke.

    Stir to combine and bring the sauce to a low boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat, simmer, and stir occasionally until the sauce has thickened to desired consistency. Set aside.

  6. During the last 30 minutes of cooking, baste the ribs two or three times with the bbq sauce.

    Finally, transfer ribs to a serving platter. Cover loosely with foil and let rest for 15 minutes. Carve the bbq ribs and serve,

Recipe Notes

The nutritional value is based on using ALL of the BBQ sauce prepared. However, you likely will not use all of the sauce and the caloric / sugar content is less than stated. 

Any left over spice rub can be sealed in a jar and stored at room temperature for several weeks. Left over sauce can be sealed and refrigerated and stored for 7 – 10 days.

Nutrition Facts
St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs
Amount Per Serving (1 One quarter of a rack of ribs)
Calories 1076 Calories from Fat 684
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 76g 117%
Saturated Fat 24g 120%
Cholesterol 260mg 87%
Sodium 1755mg 73%
Potassium 1253mg 36%
Total Carbohydrates 41g 14%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Sugars 34g
Protein 52g 104%
Vitamin A 24.4%
Vitamin C 3.8%
Calcium 11.6%
Iron 26%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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