Super Bowl Recipes: Grilled Ribs with Spicy Barbecue Sauce

Cherry Cola Rib Recipe

About 10 years ago, I ran across a recipe for spicy barbecue ribs that just had to be tried. It was met with rave reviews at a party for friends and family, and I vowed to put that one in the ‘keeper’ list.

That being said, the dish was only made once, with my next set of ‘grilling’ ideas turning toward other interests-new methods, new flavors, new ingredients.  The idea of always making the “same thing” bores me, and I love the challenge of a dish not accomplished. Tuesday Taco night will never happen in my house, no matter how many times I’ve tried.

In spite of the lack of repetition, every summer, someone I know will bump into me, and ask when I’m going to make it again. It’s funny how food memories stick with us.

My original recipe appears to have flown the coop, but here’s a rather close rendition.


Grilled Ribs with Spicy Barbecue Sauce


5 to 6 lb pork baby back ribs

1 teaspoon seasoned salt

1 teaspoon garlic pepper blend

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 cup premade barbecue sauce

1 can (12 oz) cola, or 1/2 cup of molasses

1/4 cup apricot preserves

1/2 teaspoon ground mustard

1 to 2 teaspoons Tabasco brand hot sauce


1. Heat oven to 350°F. Cut ribs into serving-size sections. Rub ribs with seasoned salt, garlic pepper and pepper flakes. Place ribs in 15x10x1-inch pan, overlapping slightly. Bake uncovered about 1 hour 30 minutes or until tender.

2. Meanwhile, in 2-quart saucepan, mix barbecue sauce, cola or molasses, apricot preserves, mustard and hot sauce. Heat to boiling; reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer uncovered 30 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until flavors are blended and sauce is slightly thickened.

3. Heat coals or gas grill for direct heat. Cover and grill ribs over medium heat 10 to 15 minutes, turning and brushing occasionally with barbecue sauce mixture to glaze.

4. Heat remaining barbecue sauce mixture to boiling; boil and stir 1 minute. Serve sauce with ribs.

Photo credit: Flickr.

About Editor

Cassandra Rosen is the co-founder and Editor for Crave Local Media Network, an internationally recognized food, wine, and lifestyle blog. With a diverse career including international finance, design, and architecture, Cassandra has put her expertise at understanding buyer purchasing patterns and strategic partnerships to work for highly successful startups, as well as Fortune 500 brands. As a food and wine expert and judge, she has consulted on industry topics and cocktail trends for Bravo TV, Shape, Prevention, Reader's Digest, Swaay, Brides Magazine, and more. Along with her husband, she is now co-founder and lead partner at FK Interactive, a wine and spirits brand consulting and product development agency, located in Winter Park, Florida. She specializes in consumer analytics and strategic partnerships, and volunteers in the community each weekend as an educator.