Apple Butter BBQ Ribs

Apple Butter BBQ Ribs


Try a new twist on your go-to rib recipe with our Apple Butter BBQ Ribs, a classic pork and apple flavor combination. Cooked slow on a charcoal grill over indirect heat, tangy dry rub flavors mingle with the sweetness of the homemade apple butter bbq sauce. You should know that the tantalizing aroma of these succulent ribs can attract the envious a...

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Serves 6-8
For the Ribs
full slabs of baby back ribs
tablespoon brown sugar
tablespoon paprika
tablespoon salt
tablespoon black pepper
teaspoon cayenne powder
teaspoon ground ginger
teaspoon dried thyme
apple wood chunks
For the Apple Butter BBQ Sauce
cup apple butter
cup ketchup
cup brown sugar
tablespoon apple cider vinegar
tablespoon yellow mustard
teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper to taste

Ingredient Tips

There are a number of varieties of paprika and they range in flavor from sweet and mild to pungent and hot. Most grocery stores carry mild paprika. You’ll find the more pungent variety at ethnic and gourmet markets.


Prep: 30 Minutes, Cook: 3 Hours

Preheat your grill to 300°F with direct and indirect heat zones. Place an aluminum pan under the grill grate on one side and fill halfway with water. Wearing protective gloves, pour a chimney of hot coals on the other side. Toss a few apple wood chunks on top of the coals.

Hot Tip: Using a water pan to add moisture to the cooking chamber is optional and can increase condensation under the grill lid. Adding spices, beer or wine to the water pan can be used to infuse an added layer of flavor into your food.

Remove the membrane under each slab of ribs by inserting a butter knife between the membrane and one of the bones. Grab the membrane with a paper towel and pull to remove it completely.


Combine the brown sugar, salt, pepper, paprika, cayenne powder, ginger and thyme in a small bowl. Apply the rub on both sides of the ribs. Press with your hands for the rub to penetrate the meat.


Place the ribs on the grill grate over indirect heat. Close the lid and cook for 2 hours.


Combine apple butter, ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper in a saucepan. Simmer for 10 minutes and set aside.


After 2 hours of cooking, remove ribs from grill. Place each on a separate sheet of aluminum foil. Pour 1 cup of Apple Butter BBQ Sauce on top of each rack and wrap in foil. Place on indirect heat side of the grill and cook for another hour.


Once your ribs are fully cooked, remove the foil and sear over direct heat for 30 seconds per side to caramelize the BBQ sauce.

Hot Tip: The ribs are done when the meat has shrunk, exposing about 1 inch of the bone on both ends.

Slice between the bones and serve with some grilled potato salad and smoked corn on the cob.

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  • Mr. Babe | Feb 19, 2020

    Do you have a recipe that can be done on a gas grill? Like the one you just emailed for a charcoal grill.
    As I no longer have a charcoal grill. And I am not planning on getting one any time soon.

    This was Helpful (0)
    • Char-Broil | Feb 20, 2020

      You can cook this recipe on a gas grill. Check out our How To Smoke on a Gas Grill article.

      This was Helpful (0)
  • Donn | Feb 22, 2020

    How do you make the Apple Butter?

    This was Helpful (0)
    • Char-Broil | Feb 24, 2020

      Hi can find apple butter at most grocery stores. Here's a great recipe for homemade apple butter.

      This was Helpful (0)
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