Let's get grilling

1 Prepare grill* for indirect cooking, placing a water filled aluminum half pan in the center of the charcoal grate and placing preheated charcoal briquets on each side of the pan. Add 3–4 chunks of your favorite smoking wood to the charcoal briquets and adjust the grill vents to bring the temperature to 250°F.
2 Combine espresso, brown sugar, salt, paprika, ground fennel, onion powder, garlic powder, and black pepper in a small bowl and blend well. Remove the membrane from the bone side of the ribs then rub the ribs with yellow mustard, and season both sides of the ribs liberally with the BBQ dry rub. Place the ribs on the smoker or grill.
3 Cover and allow the ribs to smoke for approximately 3½–4 hours until tender (note: ribs should bend at a 45 degree angle when held on one end with tongs). Brush both sides of the ribs with the espresso barbecue sauce then cover the smoker or grill and allow them to cook for 3–4 minutes until the sauce has set and is tacky. Remove the ribs from the smoker or grill, slice and serve.
4 * Alternatively you can use a smoker according to manufacturer’s instructions.
5 Espresso BBQ Sauce Instructions: Place ingredients in a small saucepan, stir to combine, then warm over medium-low heat for approximately 5 minutes until most of the juice has reduced and the sauce coats the back of a spoon. Set aside until ready to use or place in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to one week.
Cooking for 2 people


  • ground espresso
    2 tablespoons
  • brown sugar
    2 tablespoons
  • kosher salt
    1 tablespoon
  • smoked paprika
    1 tablespoon
  • ground fennel
    2 teaspoons
  • onion powder
    1 teaspoon
  • garlic powder
    1 teaspoon
  • ground black pepper
    ½ teaspoon
  • baby back ribs
    1 rack
  • yellow mustard
    ¼ cup
  • Espresso BBQ Sauce (recipe follows)

Espresso BBQ Sauce

  • Kingsford® Original Smoked Hickory Barbecue Sauce
    1 bottle (18 oz.)
  • espresso or very strong coffee
    ¼ cup
Credit: Clint Cantwell

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