BBQ Baby Back Ribs

Have I mentioned that I was like the pickiest eater on the face of the earth while growing up. I was. It was bad. I only ate noodles and grilled cheese until I was 13 years old. Thank goodness I’ve turned it around because I would not want to miss out on a dish like these Dr. Pepper BBQ Baby Back Ribs! A while back, my boyfriend ripped a recipe from one of his magazines and insisted I make them.  Me, being the fantastic girlfriend that I am, happily went to the store to pick up all the fixings. Ha – not a chance. I said if he wanted them, he better get himself to the market and pick up the ribs. About 10 minutes later he was back and waiting for me to get to work.

To be honest the idea of having Dr. Pepper in my BBQ Sauce totally freaked me out – but boy was I wrong. It adds a hint of sweetness that compliments these ribs. And let’s not forget about the fact that the meat seriously falls off the bone in this recipe. It’s super tender and juicy – and perfect for making a mess :) With only about 10 minutes of actual prep time these ribs will become a staple in your kitchen! Not to mention they are a great guy pleasing dish! Perhaps a special birthday dinner for your man?!?

BBQ Baby Back Ribs

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours

Total Time: 2 hours, 10 minutes

Yield: Serves 4 - 6

BBQ Baby Back Ribs


  • 2 racks baby back ribs
  • 1 large (2 liter) bottle of Dr Pepper
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 2 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper


  1. Place the ribs in a large baking dish and cover with most of the Dr Pepper (leave about 1/2 cup of Dr. Pepper for later) Add the salt and soak the ribs for 2 -24 hours in the fridge.
  2. Heat the oven to 350°F.
  3. Remove the ribs from the liquid, place on a baking sheet and pat them dry. Give them a good rub with the chili powder. Pour 1 cup of water into the baking sheet, and cover tightly with foil. Bake for 2 hours, until the meat nearly falls off the bone.
  4. While the ribs are in the over, heat the oil in a small pot over medium heat. Saute the onion and garlic until they're soft and add the ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire, apple cider vinegar, cayenne, and remaining 1/2 cup of Dr Pepper. Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the sauce thickens.
  5. Once the ribs have done their thing for 2 hours, remove from the oven and fire up the grill. Liberally brush the ribs with bbq sauce. When the grill is hot, cook them for 7-8 minutes on each side so they get the nice charred flavor. Remove from grill and add more sauce if desired.

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  1. I’ve actually heard of putting Dr. Pepper (or other types of soda) in BBQ sauce or in with the meat, but I’ve never tried it. Your ribs look delicious, and they just might have pushed me over the edge!

  2. Can’t ever get enough BBQ! This sounds like a great sweet and tangy flavor – what a fantastic idea. Looks tender, tasty and tantalizing – can’t wait to cook ‘em up

  3. I never considered myself a rib fan. But then I broke my jaw, had to get my mouth wired shut, followed by 14 months of braces. Now I dream about ribs! Only 3 more weeks til my teeth are freed. So, yes, I am bookmarking this! GREG

  4. Nice recipe…the only thing you are missing is smoke. Follow the same recipe but smoke for 3 hours at 250. Add sauce to the ribs, wrap in foil and continue the smoke 2 hours. Remove the ribs from the foil, place in the smoker and finish off in 1 hour, painting them with the sauce and juices that were in the foil. Your life will be rocked!

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