Main Content

Chef Jamie Gwen’s brown sugar baby back ribs

Chef Jamie Gwen’s brown sugar baby back ribs

Baking the ribs before grilling creates fall-off-the-bone, tender, delicious baby backs. Be sure to peel off the membrane (or better yet, have the butcher do it!) on the underside of the ribs to allow the seasonings to penetrate and the meat to fall off the bone. Serve these sensational, succulent ribs with a Stout or a Porter or Pinot Noir and lots of napkins!

Chef Jamie Gwen's brown sugar baby back ribs

Yields: Serves 4


2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 cup ketchup
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
3/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup molasses
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons instant Espresso Powder
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

For the Ribs:

3 racks baby back pork ribs (about 3 pounds)
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup chili powder
2 tablespoons Kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Freshly ground pepper

To make the BBQ Sauce, heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté 5 minutes or until tender. Add the remaining ingredients and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring often, until reduced to about 3 cups, about 30 minutes. (The BBQ Sauce can be prepared up to 3 days ahead and refrigerated until ready to use.)

To make the Ribs, remove the white membrane on the underside of the ribs by slipping the tip of a sharp knife under the membrane to loosen a corner. Then use a paper towel to get a good grip on the edge of the membrane, and pull the membrane from the underside of each rack of ribs. Place the ribs in a large roasting pan. Combine the brown sugar, chili powder, salt, cumin and garlic powder and pepper in a mixing bowl and stir to combine. Rub the ribs, on both sides, with the spice mixture.

Preheat the oven to 300°F. Line a shallow roasting pan or baking sheet with aluminum foil and place the ribs, meat side down in a single layer) in the pan. Cover the pan with aluminum foil, sealing the edges tightly and roast the ribs for 2 hours. Remove the foil and pour out any liquid from the roasting pan. Let the ribs cool until ready to grill.

Preheat your Twin Eagles Grill to medium-high. Brush both sides of the ribs with the BBQ sauce. Place the ribs on the grill and cook for 5 minutes on each side, turning often. Brush the ribs with the sauce again and grill 3 minutes longer. Serve the ribs with the remaining sauce.

Jamie Gwen is a CIA Grad, Celebrity Chef

Jamie Gwen

Jamie Gwen is a CIA Grad, Celebrity Chef, Certified Sommelier, Lifestyle Expert and four-time Cookbook Author who can be seen stirring up something delicious on television, on the radio and in print from coast-to-coast. She brings the best to radio with her weekly Syndicated Radio Show heard every Sunday on Radio Stations across the country and in SoCal on Talk Radio 790 KABC. Jamie can be seen on KTLA Channel 5, on HSN and on national television news shows sharing her seasonal lifestyle approach and her passion for food. Her recipes are featured on and on Microsoft’s worldwide Food & Drink App. Jamie’s most recent cookbook, Co-Authored by Lana Sills and entitled “Good Food For Good Times 2”, is now available as an eBook and has been featured on The Talk, Emeril Live and Martha Stewart.