Dr Pepper Ribs: Sticky, Spicy And Sweet


I’ve been on a rib kick lately. I usually like my ribs simple—seasoned with nothing but a salt, cayenne and black pepper rub, smoked low and slow over post-oak wood. But when I’m trying to make outdoor fare inside, I tend to change my tune. Take my Dr Pepper ribs. These are sticky, spicy and sweet, which is the exact opposite of how I like my barbecue. And yet, I love my Dr Pepper ribs so much that I could eat a whole rack by myself.

Now if you know me well, you are aware that I’m a staunch opponent of sauce on barbecue. And yes, these ribs are wet and messy, so much in fact that if you don’t have a stack of napkins nearby you should probably wear a bib. So what changed my mind and why did I decide to make saucy ribs?

We Texans love to cook with Dr Pepper. I love to use Dr Pepper in my peanut brittle and a Dr Pepper chocolate cake is wonderful as well as it always turns out so moist. But I’d never tried using Dr Pepper with meat and I was curious if it would make that much of a difference.


I’ve tried making meat with my stove-top smoker in the style that I like it, but save for fish and vegetables, the results haven’t been great. So when it comes to oven-baked ribs, I decided to eschew outside authenticity and instead shoot for lots of flavor. Enter the Dr Pepper.
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