Spicy Bourbon Caramel Ribs

Let’s be honest, do I really need to say why spicy bourbon caramel ribs are delicious and a great idea? I didn’t think so. This was a recipe that I threw together for a potluck I hosted, and I couldn’t get enough. For the recipe I used baby back ribs, but spare ribs would be just as amazing.


  • 2 racks ribs
  • 3 cups bourbon
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tbsp hot sauce
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • A couple drops liquid smoke
  • A dash worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper

In a medium saucepan reduce the bourbon over high heat until the alcohol has burned off and a little over half the liquid remains. About three to five minutes. Add i<n the brown sugar, vinegar, hot sauce, garlic, worcestershire, liquid smoke, and half a teaspoon of salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium and allow to simmer until the mixture becomes a caramel consistency, about five to 10 minutes. Season to taste. Set aside and allow to cool. The caramel can be made in advance and refrigerated for up to one week.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Season your ribs with salt and pepper. Brush enough of the caramel onto the ribs to just coat them. Wrap the ribs in foil packages, place on a sheet tray, and bake for 90 minutes.

At this point the ribs should be cooked and tender, but still holding onto the bone. Switch the oven to a high broil. Brush a thin layer of caramel onto the ribs and broil on a foil lined baking sheet for about three to five minutes, but keep an eye on it because it can become charcoal in seconds. Repeat this process until you run out of caramel and the ribs have that beautiful, slightly charred, how barbecue is supposed to be consistency.

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