Yield: 4 to 6 servings 


tablespoons kosher salt

tablespoons smoked paprika

tablespoons firmly packed light brown sugar

tablespoon sugar

tablespoon ground black pepper  

teaspoons dried oregano

teaspoons ground mustard

teaspoon garlic powder

teaspoon onion powder

teaspoon dried thyme leaves

teaspoon ground cumin

teaspoon celery seeds 

½ teaspoon ground red pepper

cup water

¼ cup apple-cider vinegar

(3½-pound) racks St. Louis–style pork spare ribs


1. In a medium bowl, combine salt, paprika, brown sugar, sugar, black pepper, oregano, mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, cumin, celery seeds, and red pepper.

2. Place 2 tablespoons spice mixture in a small bowl; add 1 cup water and apple-cider vinegar, whisking to combine to create mopping sauce. Set mixture aside.

3. Rinse ribs and pat dry. Remove thin membrane from back of ribs by piercing it with a sharp knife and pulling it off. Rub salt mixture evenly over ribs. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.

4. Preheat one side of grill to medium-low (250° to 300°).

5. Grill ribs, meaty side down, over indirect heat, with grill lid closed, for 2 hours, brushing ribs every 30 minutes with mopping sauce. Turn ribs over, and cook for 3 to 4 hours, brushing every 30 minutes with mopping sauce. Cook until meat is very tender. Serve immediately.