Tender, juicy ribs cooked low and slow on the grill, with an amazing homemade Blueberry Maple BBQ Sauce – the perfect summer dish!
I love grilling our meals outdoors, and living in Florida, means we’re lucky enough to do it pretty much all year long. Being able to grill it up whenever we want *kind of* makes up for the humidity that is Florida.
But as much as I love to grill, the debate at Casa de Crews has always been ‘gas vs. charcoal’. Jason will only grill with our charcoal grill. And everything always tastes so amazing, and I prefer the flavor so much more when he cooks using charcoal. However, using the charcoal grill always intimidated me, so I’d use gas, or grill inside with a grill-pan.
…until my husband taught me the ropes with our charcoal grill. I asked for his guidance, after wanting to make a rack of ribs, and I am so glad I finally let him show me the way. It’s a lot easier than I thought, and I’m not looking back! We may have a new grillmaster in our house 😉
Jason’s biggest tip to me was to cook ribs is low, and slow on the grill. He used a chimney starter, and filled it with a bit of newspaper, followed by charcoal briquettes, and lit the newspaper on fire, to get those coals hot. You can add the coals directly to the grill if you prefer, but Jason showed me this technique, and states it allows for more even heat among the coals, which allows for more even cooking.
My husband makes an amazing dry rub, and while I love it as is, I wanted to make my own sauce for my grilled ribs, to add a little of myself to this recipe. Since it’s blueberry season, I knew I’d try my hand at a Blueberry Maple BBQ Sauce, and it did not disappoint!
I plan to make these ribs, with homemade sauce for friends, and family all summer long! This sauce will make 4-ish cups, and make a great hostess gift for the next bbq you’re invited to.
grilled ribs with blueberry maple bbq sauce
For the ribs
- ¼ cup paprika
- 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 3 tablespoons Kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 rack ribs
Homemade Blueberry Maple BBQ Sauce
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large sweet onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 cups fresh blueberries
- 2 cups tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup maple syrup - raw honey will also work
- 1 tablespoon dry rub - recipe above
- 1 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes - to taste
- salt and pepper - to taste
- About one hour before you plan to start grilling, make the rub: In a bowl, combine all dry ingredients. Pat the ribs dry with paper towels. Remove the thin membrane attached to the underside of the ribs. Sprinkle both sides ribs with the rub. Set aside at room temperature for one hour.
- Preheat the grill for indirect cooking at 250 to 300 degrees F.
- Place the ribs, meaty side down, over a drip pan, close the grill, and cook for 2 hours.
- Remove ribs from the grill. Double-wrap each rack in heavy-duty aluminum foil. Return wrapped ribs to the grill and cook until very tender, 2½ to 3 hours more.
- Remove from grill, and allow to cool. Cut into slabs of 3-4 and serve.
Homemade Blueberry Maple BBQ Sauce
- To a medium pan, heat olive oil. Add garlic and onion and cook until the onions are translucent, about 8-10 minutes.
- Add tomato sauce, blueberries, maple syrup, coconut aminos, bbq rub, and red pepper flakes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until sauce thickens slightly, about 20 minutes.
- Stir in the apple cider vinegar; and add salt and pepper to taste.
- Using an immersion blender, mix until all ingredients are smooth. You can also use a blender, or food processor.
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