BBQ Spare Ribs with Grilled Romaine

Cook ribs lightning-fast with this easy method.

Total Time:
Level: Easy
Yield: 4 servings


  • 1 rack St. Louis–style spare ribs (about 3 lbs.)
  • kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp. mayonnaise
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp. chopped chives, plus more for garnish
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 3 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. hot paprika
  • 1 tsp. fennel seeds
  • 1 orange
  • 2 tbsp. ketchup
  • 2 romaine hearts, cut in half lengthwise


  1. Preheat grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. Cut ribs into 3 sections. Add to a large pot filled with water and 1 tablespoon salt. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Drain ribs and place on sheet pan. Dry well with paper towels.
  2. Meanwhile in a medium jar add mayonnaise, 3 tablespoons olive oil, Dijon, chives, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Shake well and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  3. In the bowl of a mini prep or food processor add garlic, brown sugar, paprika, fennel seed, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Pulse until well incorporated. Spoon half of this rub mixture onto the ribs and rub all over with hands. To the remaining rub add the zest of 1 orange, 1/2 cup fresh orange juice, and ketchup. Stir well.
  4. Place ribs on grill or grill pan and cook for 10 minutes. Place romaine on grill for last minute. Brush glaze on ribs and cook for 1 minute more until lightly charred. Serve ribs with grilled romaine and drizzle of dressing. Garnish with chives.
Judy Kim is a NYC-based food stylist, recipe developer, and photographer. She also writes recipes for her website The Judy Lab.


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