Baby Back Ribs – Indirect Grilling Method

Baby Back Ribs - Plated and ready to eat!Do you like eating ribs when you go out to eat, but hate paying the money for them?  Well you can make them at home just as tasty and save a few bucks as well.  Making ribs is not that difficult.  This is my 4th attempt at making ribs at home and I have got it down to a science.  Each time I make them they get more and more tender.  This time they were better than any restaurant ribs I have ever had.

For this recipe, I cooked on a gas grill using the indirect grilling technique, but you could also use a charcoal grill or if you would like to step up to the next level check out my article on Smoked Baby Back Ribs using the 2-1-1 method.

Any one that has a grill can make ribs!  You just need a little bit of time and patience!


• 4 pounds pork baby back ribs or 2 racks

• 1 bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce

Kansas City Style Rib Rub

• 1/2 cup brown sugar

• 1/4 cup paprika

• 1 tablespoon black pepper

• 1 tablespoon salt

• 1 tablespoon chili powder

• 1 tablespoon garlic powder

• 1 tablespoon onion powder

• 1 teaspoon cayenne

Baby Back Ribs - Ingredients

Items used to make this recipe

• Serving Platter

• Gas Grill

• Tongs

• Knife

• Paper towels


1. Remove the ribs from the packaging.  Wash each rack of ribs off and then you will need to peel off the membrane from the bone side or the back of the ribs.  This can be done by using a knife to get under the membrane and then take a paper towel to get a good grip on the membrane and then peel it off.

2. Cut your racks of ribs in half.  Leave about 6 to 8 ribs for each one.

3. Next, combine all of the ingredients for your rub and mix them together well.  You will probably have extra so use an air tight bottle to save the rub mix for the next time you make ribs.

4. Now, take the rub mix and sprinkle it over the ribs and rub it in with your fingers.  That’s it your ribs are prepared.  Not to bad so far.  Now let your ribs sit out and get to room temperature which should take about 20 to 30 minutes.

Baby Back Ribs - Spice Rub Applied

5. While your ribs are sitting, preheat the grill and set it up for indirect grilling.  You want your grill to be at medium low heat or 250 degrees.  With a gas grill this is very simple.  Just turn on one side of the grill.  For a charcoal grill move all of your charcoal to one side of the grill so you have the other side not over direct heat.

6. Now you are ready to put your ribs on the grill.  Just put them onto the side of the grill that is not turned on.  Like shown in the picture.  Be sure to rotate your ribs every so often.

Baby Back Ribs - On the grill with indirect heat

7. The ribs will take about 2 to 3 hours to get done.  You will know they are done when the meat pulls back from the bone about a half inch or so.  This is demonstrated in the picture to the right.  You can see that the rack in the middle has started to pull back quite a bit so those are definitely ready to go.

8. During the last 15 minutes of cooking is when you’re able to baste the ribs with your barbecue sauce of choice.

Baby Back Ribs - Apply the sauce

9. After the 15 minutes, pull them off the grill and let them sit for 5 to 10 minutes to cool down.

Now your fingers better be ready to get sticky! Enjoy your homemade ribs.

These ribs were awesome this time.  I can’t wait to make them again in my new smoker!

Baby Back Ribs - Plated and ready to eat!

How about some Smoked Baby Back Ribs!

6 thoughts on “Baby Back Ribs – Indirect Grilling Method”

  1. Hey Average Joe,

    thanks a million for this simple but great recipie. Do you have any general rules for how often you rotate the ribs (i.e. every half hour). Also, is there any type of wash you brush on during the indirect cooking process to keep the ribs moist (I have seen some vinegar based ones on t.v.) or do you find this is not a problem.

  2. Hello Mike,

    With my grill since it doesn’t circulate air to well I try and rotate them about every half hour or so. I don’t usually brush the ribs and they come out ok but you could use that method. You could also keep a tin of water in the grill to keep the moisture level up.


  3. I’m cooking some baby back ribs now using the recipe describe here. But it’s taking longer than 3 hours to be done. Is there something I’m doing wrong?

    • Nope – I do mine about 4 hours with indirect heat {coals} off to the side and temp around 250 – 275 basting with a brush every 1/2 hour so with 1/2 &1/2 beer and bbq sauce mixed together and turning the slabs over about once an hour. When the meat pulls back from the bone tips and starts to come off the bones when turning over you’re ready go take them off the grill. Let rest for 15 to 20 minutes. I cut between every other rib to serve. BBQ sauce on the side.

  4. Joe, I have weber easy spirit 2(electric) and would like to find recipes using a rib rack for ribs. The rack is very helpful in time and basting. Hope have a helpful hint…


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