The only dry rub recipe for beef ribs you'll need. For short ribs in the oven, smoked or grilled. Plus, a delicious coffee dry rub variation!
This easy homemade beef rib rub will make every short ribs recipe so much more tasty, regardless of the cooking method you'll choose.
It will work perfectly with smoked short ribs, grilled and ribs baked in the oven.
However, don't limit yourself by applying it only on beef ribs. Experiment by using it as brisket or steak seasoning or try it with another kind of protein such as pork chops or grilled chicken. I have also used it on these crunchy roasted chickpeas and loved it.
Some of the spices and herbs used in this rib rub blend are classic dry rub ingredients like paprika, black pepper and garlic powder. Others were chosen because they pair very well with beef like the dried thyme, coriander and cloves.
How long should dry rub sit on beef?
Though you can cook the beef as soon as you rub it with the spice blend, it is advised to leave it on the meat for at least 30 minutes so that it can penetrate deeper and flavor the whole cut of meat.
For the best results, leave it on the beef overnight.
For more details, read the article what are dry rubs and how to use them from deadrooster.co.
For this simple dry rub you'll need the following ingredients:
- Brown sugar or dark brown sugar
- Ancho chile powder
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Dried thyme
- Black pepper (freshly ground if possible)
- Ground coriander
- Ground cloves
Because this beef rub recipe already contains salt, remember not to add any extra salt to the meat before cooking.
If you are cooking your meat in a pan it's advised to omit the sugar because it will burn at high heat.
In a small bowl, combine all the dry rub ingredients. Use a fork to crush or remove any lumps that may form.
Once all of the ingredients are combined, transfer to glass jar with a lid or another suitable container.
Coffee rub: To make a coffee dry rub add 2 teaspoons of freshly ground coffee and ¼ teaspoon of ground cinnamon.
For the coffee I prefer to use a light roast variety because dark roasted coffee tastes a bit burned in my opinion. The cinnamon also pairs vere well with the beef flavor and you can't really taste it, just enhances the rest of the flavors.
Hot and spicy: For some extra heat, add ½ to 1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper.
Dry rub with cocoa powder: Add 1 teaspoon of Dutch processed cocoa powder and ¼ teaspoon of ground cinnamon.
Here, the amount of cocoa powder is just one teaspoon because it has a strong taste which can overpower the rest of the ingredients. The cinnamon is used for the same reason as with the coffee rub.
Instead of ground cloves you can use ground cinnamon or ground star anise.
Instead of cumin you can use ground allspice.
You can substitute the dried thyme with dried oregano without changing too much the original flavor, since those herbs are similar in taste.
An alternative for the ancho chile powder is regular chili powder. Many types of chili powder contain cumin, oregano and onion powder, so if you use that in your spice blend you may want to reduce the quantities of the other spices.
Store this dry rub for beef short ribs in a sealed glass jar or another suitable air-tight container and place in a cool, dry place for up to 6 months.
How to use the dry rub
Remove the membrane from the back of the rack. Lift the membrane from the bone at one corner using a kitchen knife. Then, use a clean kitchen towel or a paper towel to get a good grip and peel it off.
Using a sharp knife, trim any excess fat off the beef ribs
Rinse under cold water and pat dry with paper towels.
Place the meat in a large container and store in the refrigerator for a few hours or over night.
Other ways to use this rub:
Baked short ribs in oven
Brush the ribs with BBQ sauce (optional) and apply the dry rub. Wrap each piece with aluminum foil and store in the fridge for a few hours or over night.
Transfer the aluminum foil packets on a baking sheet and bake in a preheated oven at 300 °F (150 °C) for 2.5 to 3 hours until the meat is fork-tender.
Open the foil packets and turn on the broiler for 5 minutes to give them that barbecued flavor.
Cooking other cuts of meat in a pan.
According to the article dry rubs 101 by nimanranch.com you can make compound butter with the dry rub and use it for roasts and steaks.
Mix equal quantities of room temperature butter and dry rub until you get a homogenous mixture and refrigerate. When cooking your meat, add 1 tablespoon of the compound butter when the meat is almost done and there are only a few minutes left of cooking time.
This compound butter will create a flavorful, rich sauce.
Side dishes for beef short ribs
Short ribs can be served with a variety of side dishes such as this Israeli couscous salad, a crunchy Greek cabbage salad, or this Arugula and goat cheese salad. Some roasted potatoes or Italian mashed potatoes are also very nice, as well as this authentic Baba Ganoush recipe (Lebanese eggplant dip).
Here are some more pairing ideas:
Best dry rub recipe for beef short ribs
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar or dark brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons ancho chile powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon black pepper, (freshly ground if possible)
- ½ teaspoon ground coriander
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- Place all of the ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together to thoroughly combine. Use a fork to crush or remove any lumps that may form.
- Once all of the ingredients are combined, transfer to glass jar with a lid or another suitable air-tight container.
Using a marinade with a dry rub is totally optional.
In fact, many cooks when using dry rubs that contain salt, prefer not to use a marinade because the rub acts like a dry brine.
If you decide to use a marinade, it's best to use one that matches the flavors of the rib rub or just season the marinade with some of the rub.
Paprika and chili powder are not the same. Their main difference is that paprika is a single dried chile powder while chili is often a combination of dried chiles and other spices/herbs such as oregano, cumin, garlic powder and onion powder.