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Raspberry Chipotle BBQ Pork Ribs

Woohoo! Let’s kick off the grilling season with some Raspberry Chipotle BBQ Pork Ribs! These big, meaty pork ribs are fork tender, seasoned with a dry chipotle rub. We sauced them up with a savory-sweet roasted raspberry chipotle sauce. You will savor the best grilled ribs ever!
barbecue Ribs on a plate and sauce in the background

Ribs and sauce, ready for serving

These ribs!  They are tender, succulent and savory-sweet with a little heat….Nosh, Nosh!

There are several barbecue establishment in our area with some really, really good ribs. But, we don’t go to any of them anymore. Last year we grilled up our Easy Barbecue Pork Ribs and discovered the benefits of making our own ribs and hanging out in our back yard on a sunny day to enjoy our feast.
  • Home grilling is more cost-effective.
  • We can relax in a private setting.
  • Unselfconsciously, smear our faces with sauce from our delicious homemade ribs.
  • We can wipe our faces and hands with a real, full-size washcloth! 
  • Those tiny postage-stamp size, wet-wipes the restaurants provide have always been my pet peeve.
So, if you are thinking of a backyard barbecue for the up-coming ‘blast into summer’ holiday, may we suggest our raspberry chipotle BBQ pork ribs?
First off, are the ribs. We are working with one long, 2-1/2 pound rack of St. Louis pork ribs. There is a silvery membrane covering the boney side of the ribs and it has to come off.  Here is a method that works every time:
Starting at one end of the pork rack, bone side up,  slide a dinner knife between the thin membrane and a rib bone. Stretch and tug at the membrane with the knife until it tears loose. It will be slippery and hard to hold so grasp it with a paper towel and peel it off.

The dry rub for the ribs:

Mix up the dry rub blend in a small dish. This is our basic pork spice rub with salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder and brown sugar. We enhanced the flavor of the rub with chipotle powder and smoked paprika.  It is a great combination for pork that compliments the roasted raspberry chipotle sauce.
Raspberry Chipotle bbq Pork Ribs with a dry rub

Pork ribs with dry rub

Next, rip off a sheet of aluminum foil long enough to cover the ribs twice, with a couple of inches for crimping the top end closed. Lay the foil on top of a rimmed baking sheet with two or three inches over-hanging the baking sheet at the top end.

Oven-roasted pork ribs:

Position the rack of pork ribs in the center of the foil-covered baking sheet.  Coat each side of the ribs with the dry rub.  It’s perfectly OK to use your clean hands.  Just make sure you get that mix rubbed down into all the little nooks and crannies.
Once the ribs are well rubbed on both sides, fold the foil up over the ribs. Enclose both sides of the foil by crimping and sealing both the lower and upper layers of the foil together. Then, crimp and seal the foil at the top end to enclose the entire package.

Tip:   Turn the sealed edge up slightly to keep any juices from escaping.

Slide the baking sheet with the ribs into the oven, pre-heated to 250°F. Set your timer for 2-1/2 hours. These raspberry chipotle BBQ pork ribs will have an incredible flavor from that long, slow roasting.
About 15-minutes before the timer buzzes, fill your charcoal chimney about one-half full.  The sauced ribs should grill over medium-low heat.  It is important to not get the grill too hot as once the sauce goes on the ribs, the sugar in it will begin to burn if the heat is too hot.
BBQ pork ribs with raspberry chipotle sauce

Slab of ribs, hot off the grill

How to tell when the raspberry chipotle bbq pork ribs are done.

Ahh….this is the key! No guessing, no poking and no tasting.  As the pork ribs cook the meat shrinks and exposes the bones at the thinner side of the rack. When about 1/4-inch of the bones are exposed, the ribs should be done
Remember, they will still get a bit more cooking on the grill while the sauce is glazing.  If you let the ribs cook until the meat is ‘falling-off-the-bone’ you will have overcooked ribs. Then you will need a fork to eat them.
When the timer buzzes, transfer the baking sheet from the oven to a workspace. Open the foil and check the ribs. If you see some bones exposed your good to go. 
Use tongs and a long spatula/pancake turner and lift the ribs out of the foil and onto a platter and set them near the grill.
Pork Ribs cut into servings

Ribs cut into servings

The Sauce for our Raspberry Chipotle Pork BBQ Ribs:

Our homemade Roasted Raspberry Chipotle is a perfect compliment to the pork ribs. We used fresh raspberries and canned chipotles in adobo sauce for a well-balanced, not too sweet sauce that adds an amazing taste to these ribs.
You can roast the raspberries and put the sauce together easily in 30-minutes while the ribs are in the oven. Or, you can make it in advance.   It will keep in a lidded container for a week or more. 
The recipe makes about two cups of sauce so you will have more than enough to grill the ribs with some left over.  It is a multi-purpose sauce and the post gives a few ideas of how to make some awesome good eats with it.
When the charcoal is ready and all ashy, pour them into the spread them out and give the grill surface a brushing of non-stick oil. Slather the sauce on the meaty side of the ribs and transfer to the grill.
Add sauce to the exposed boney side and after 5-minutes, flip them over.  Repeat the saucing-flipping until a deep, brown crust forms, then transfer the ribs to a cutting board.
Plated serving of ribs, sauce, sides

Plated serving of ribs, sauce, sides

Slice the ribs between the bones and arrange on a serving platter.  Garnish with fresh herbs.  Serve some of the sauce in a small dish along with the ribs.

These ribs are easy, succulent and tender. I’m not saying ‘fall-off-the bones’ tender as then you would need a fork. We like to pick up that bone and nosh away. These are perfect!



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Ribs and sauce

Raspberry Chipotle BBQ Pork Ribs

Yield: 4-6 Servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes

Raspberry Chipotle BBQ Pork Ribs are first oven roasted low and slow, then glazed with our homemade Roasted Raspberry Chipotle Sauce and finished on the BBQ grill. They are savory-sweet with a little heat, tender and incredibly flavorful


For the Ribs:

  • 1 rack pork spareribs, about 2 1/2 pounds

For the Dry Rub:

  • 1 tablespoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard seed
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika

For the BBQ Sauce:


Start the ribs in the oven (long and slow for tender ribs)

  1. Preheat the oven to 250°F
  2. Remove the silvery membrane from the underside of the ribs: At one end of the rack, slide a dinner knife between the membrane and a rib bone. Pry the membrane up, stretching until it tears. Holding one end of the membrane with a paper towel, peel off the membrane and discard.
  3. In a small dish or canning jar, add the dry rub ingredients and combine thoroughly. 
  4. Pull off a sheet of foil twice the length of the ribs, plus 3 extra inches. Place the foil on a rimmed baking sheet with 3-inches extending one end. 
  5. Lay the rack of ribs, bone side up, on the foil-lined baking sheet and sprinkle the surface with 2 tablespoons of dry rub, massage it into all the cracks and crevices. 
  6. Flip the rack over to the meaty side and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of the rub and massage well. 
  7. Fold the foil up over the ribs, bringing it to the overhanging 3-inch portion. Crimp each side of the lower and upper pieces of foil together then crimp the 3-inch end together to form an enclosed package.  
  8. Transfer the baking sheet with the package of ribs to the center rack of the oven and bake for 2 1/2 hours. Remove from the oven and partially unwrap the foil to check for doneness. If a 1/4-inch of bones show at the thin side of the rack, the ribs should be done. If not, re-cover with the foil and give them another 10-15 minutes more oven time.  
  9. Remove the baking sheet from the oven, open the foil package and lift the rack of ribs onto a large platter or another baking sheet and set near the grill.

To Grill the Ribs:

  1. About 15-minutes before the ribs are finished roasting, fill the charcoal chimney about 1/3 to 1/2 full with charcoal for a medium-low heat. When the charcoal chunks become white with ash, spread them into the bottom of your unit with the grill grate.
  2. Coat the grill grate with non-stick oil.
  3. Brush the raspberry chipotle sauce on the meaty side of the pork ribs and transfer the ribs to the grill with the sauced side down.
  4. Brush the exposed side with a coating of the sauce. Grill for 3-5 minutes and flip the ribs over and grill another 3-5 minutes. Repeat this process once more, saucing and grilling until desired degree of color has been achieved being cautious that they do not burn.

To Serve:

  1. Remove the ribs from the grill, cut between the ribs and place the serving pieces on a platter. Serve with sides of your choice and enjoy. 


  1. The ribs will release their juices while cooking and infuse their flavor into the meat.
  2. Turn the crimped edges of the foil upward to eliminate any juices from escaping the package.
  3. The ribs will be done when 1/4-inch of bone show on the thin side of the ribs. If the bones don’t show at least 1/4-inch of bone, re-cover them with the foil and pop the baking sheet back into the oven for a few more minutes. I have never had to do this step as the ribs have always been ready. 
  4. A larger size rack of pork ribs will take a longer oven time, just watch for the 1/4-inch of bone to show.
  5. Spray non-stick oil spray into a small dish and brush it onto the grill. This will keep the oil spray from flaming up as it hits the hot coals.
  6. Apply the raspberry chipotle sauce generously and watch closely that it does not begin to burn, remove the ribs from the grill when the sauce is glazed with a rich brown crust. 
  7. These ribs can be enjoyed in the dead of winter when the outdoor grill is covered with snow. Simply slather on the sauce and finish them under the broiler.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 3 Ribs
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 353Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 73mgSodium: 2013mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 3gSugar: 14gProtein: 16g

Nutrition information is a guideline only, is calculated automatically by third party software, and absolute accuracy is not guaranteed.

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