Oven Baby Back Ribs with Hoisin BBQ Sauce (OXO Recipe Contest Winner!)

4 stars based on 1 votes

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A big thank you to everyone who participated in my OXO recipe contest! I received many wonderful recipes but these baby back ribs with an Asian flair won me over. Slow-baked in a delicious hoisin barbecue sauce until the meat falls off the bone, they’re some of the best ribs I’ve ever tasted. Congrats to Ellen from McLean, Virginia for submitting the recipe!


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The recipe is easy, you just have to think ahead because the ribs need a long time to marinate and cook.

Begin by preparing the meat. The first step is to remove the membrane that coats the underside of the ribs. If possible, ask your butcher to do this for you. Otherwise, loosen it with a butter knife and peel it off. If you’re lucky, it will come off in one piece. Sometimes it’s a little stubborn; if it shreds, you’ll have to pull it off in bits and pieces. This ensures the ribs will be nice and tender.

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Next, trim away any excess fat or flaps of meat. Ellen suggests trimming any scrappy meat off the ends of the racks and scraping away any large areas of fat. The smaller areas of fat will render during the cooking process and also add flavor and moisture. Finally, cut the racks in half so they’re easier to handle.

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Make the barbecue sauce. Be sure to use a good quality hoisin sauce such as Kikkoman or Lee Kum Kee; it’s the main ingredient and makes a big difference.

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Place the ribs on a baking sheet lined with heavy duty aluminum foil. (The foil is important, otherwise you’ll be soaking the pan for days afterward.) Reserve some of the sauce and use the rest to coat the ribs. Cover the pan tightly with foil and let marinate for at least four hours or overnight.

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Cook the ribs in a low oven for 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until just tender.

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Baste generously with the reserved sauce, then turn up the heat and finish cooking for about 30 minutes more.

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Let cool slightly, then slice into individual ribs and enjoy. They’re sticky and messy — in a good way — so serve with plenty of napkins!

One last note: Ellen says these ribs are also delicious finished on the grill. After cooking them in the oven for 1½ hours, she throws them on the grill, basting occasionally with the reserved barbecue sauce. I didn’t try it myself but imagine it’s very good.

Oven Baby Back Ribs with Hoisin BBQ Sauce

Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 2 racks baby back pork ribs (4-5 pounds), membrane removed (see note below)
  • 1 cup hoisin sauce, best quality such as Kikkoman or Lee Kum Kee
  • 1/2 cup chili sauce (preferably Heinz)
  • 2-1/2 tablespoons dry Sherry
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Asian sesame oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

Instructions

  1. Make the hoisin barbecue sauce by combining all of the ingredients except for the ribs in a medium bowl.
  2. Trim any excess fat or flaps of meat and cut racks in half into 6- to 7-rib sections. Line a baking sheet with heavy duty aluminum foil. Place the rib racks on the baking sheet. Reserve 1 cup of the sauce and pour the rest over the rib racks. Coat both sides of racks evenly with sauce and arrange in a single layer, meaty sides up. Cover tightly with heavy duty aluminum foil and refrigerate for a minimum of four hours or overnight.
  3. Preheat the oven to 300°F. Place the covered ribs in the oven and bake, undisturbed, for 1½ hours. Remove the ribs from the oven and carefully remove the foil (the steam will be very hot and can burn). Using a pastry brush or back of a spoon, coat the racks generously with the reserved barbecue sauce. Turn the oven heat up to 350 degrees. Return pan to the oven, uncovered, and cook until the ribs are tender and starting to brown, about 30 minutes. Let cool briefly before cutting in-between the ribs to serve.
  4. Note: Ask your butcher to remove the white membrane on the underside of the ribs. If you need to remove it yourself, loosen it at the edge with a butter knife and peel it off (if it's slippery, grab it with a paper towel). Note that there appears to be another layer of membrane underneath the one you remove; you shouldn't remove it as it's what holds the meat and bones together.

Reviews & Comments

  • 4 stars

    After you peel a small part of the membrane away at thinner end of b&b ribs use a paper towel to help you get a good grip on the membrane as you pull diagonally to the other side.

    - Joe Coppola on June 15, 2014 Reply
  • Plan on making these for July 4th for about 30-35 people along with a chicken entree, appetizers and sides. How may lbs would you suggest?

    - Jeff T on April 28, 2014 Reply
    • Hi Jeff, Usually I’d count on about a pound per person, but since you’ll have a lot of other food as well, I think 4 ribs per person (or about 1/3 a rack) would be good.

      - Jenn on April 30, 2014 Reply
  • Ribs – the messier the better! I stuck with the Asian influence and served with Thai cucumber salad and veggie fried rice. Yum!!

    - Cherie F. on March 9, 2013 Reply
  • We love ribs…. all kinds of ribs! So glad you specified Heinz chili sauce – there are so many different kinds of chili sauce… sweet, hot, thai… never know which one I need.

    - Cherie on June 20, 2012 Reply
  • what’s not to love about a gooey bbq sauce…these ribs were delicious and left my family wanting for more.

    - darlaBE on May 19, 2012 Reply
  • This is getting added to my recipe book. I LOVE Hoison!

    - GrillMaster on May 15, 2012 Reply
  • This looks amazing

    - Meagan on May 15, 2012 Reply
  • Can cream sherry be used in place of dry?

    - Martha on April 10, 2012 Reply
    • Hi Martha, It’s better to use dry, as cream sherry could make the sauce too sweet.

      - Jenn on April 10, 2012 Reply
  • These were AMAZING!! Best oven cooked ribs ever and the sauce was perfect!! Thanks!

    - Jess on April 10, 2012 Reply
  • These were great! I ended up finding baby back ribs in a smaller package after all. The consensus was that I probably could have cooked the ribs uncovered for 45 minutes instead of 30–some were ever-so-slightly underdone for our taste—but overall these were a huge hit and I’ll definitely be making them again. The sauce was finger-licking good!

    - Allie on March 11, 2012 Reply
  • Jenn: I plan on making these this week, but my supermarket only has “pork back ribs” in 8- to 11-pound packages, which is way too much for us. They sell pork spare ribs in 3- to 4-pound packages, so I’m thinking of using those instead. Would I need to alter the cooking time or anything else if I’m using spare ribs? I’ve never made ribs before, so I’m not even sure what the difference between the two is…would it matter for this recipe?

    - Allie on March 6, 2012 Reply
    • Hi Allie, Spare ribs are bigger than baby backs so you’ll probably need to cook them a bit longer. Just keep an eye on them…they’re done when they’re tender. Hope you enjoy and please let me know how the spare ribs come out.

      - Jenn on March 6, 2012 Reply
  • These are the best ribs I have ever had. If you want to impress your dinner guests make these! We like to finish them off on the grill for the last 20-30 minutes.

    - Mary on March 6, 2012 Reply
  • They are delicious!! Tried it last night, loved it!
    Great recipe

    - Miora on March 2, 2012 Reply
  • I made this last summer after you posted the recipe, and now all my friends request that I make it at every summer bbq/party! Thanks for the great recipe!

    - Sandy on March 1, 2012 Reply
  • does the chili sauce make these spicy?

    - Eliana on March 1, 2012 Reply
    • Eliana, The chili sauce does not make them spicy. Hope that helps :)

      - Jenn on March 1, 2012 Reply
  • Sticky AND messy….my favorite kind of ribs!

    - leslie on May 14, 2011 Reply

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