Not only a family favourite dinner recipe, these paleo baked ribs are just as perfect to serve to a crowd at parties, as a main or appetizer. You will soon be addicted to the flavourful pork ribs. The secret is in the dry rub, which can be used on pork or chicken. Sichuan peppercorn is a key ingredient and the twist in this dry rub blend. Pack it into a jar as an edible gift – the ratio for a giftable batch of dry rub is included in the recipe notes below.
My favourite dry rub for pork ribs inevitably has some Chinese element in there, combined with the more standard ingredients in dry rubs. It’s a fusion but simple blend to incorporate spices I loved growing up.
Paleo Dry Rub Ingredients
Cumin for one, is heavily used in Chinese Uyghur cuisine that’s popular across the country. Since cumin is a common spice on grilled meats all over the world, it’s hard to attribute the origin of its flavour. Nonetheless, I grew up eating a lot of cumin!
Sichuan peppercorn (花椒, Szechuan peppercorn), however, is distinctively Chinese, with a characteristic described as numbing instead of spicy. Not only Sichuan peppercorn is used in great amounts in the famous Chinese Szechuan cuisine, it’s a staple spice for all Chinese cooking – one may not have black peppers, but will surly have Sichuan peppercorns in her traditional Chinese kitchen. I recommend grinding your Sichuan peppercorn fresh to harvest the amazing flavour, instead of buying pre-ground.
Now to make the dry rub blend paleo, use coconut sugar or maple sugar instead of regular table sugar.
Make a Big Batch of Dry Rub
I like to make a big batch of the dry rub. It speeds up cooking whenever I want to use it for a quick dinner. I included a pre-made dry rub ratio in the recipe section below. Use 1 tablespoon of the dry rub for 1 pound or pork ribs or chicken wings.
A large batch of the dry rub blend makes a great edible gift to friends and families!
More Paleo Dinner Recipes You Will Love:
- Sausage & Mussels in Tomato Broth (Paleo, Low-Carb)
- Sheet-Pan Keto Zucchini Noodles and Shrimp (Paleo, Whole 30, Keto)
- Instant Pot Osso Buco (Low-Carb, Paleo)
- Grilled Beef Liver (Keto, Paleo, Low-Carb)
- Cozy Winter Meatball Soup (Gluten-Free, Paleo, Whole 30)
Paleo Baked Ribs + A Family Favourite Dry Rub Recipe
- 3 pounds all-natural pork ribs
- 2 1/2 teaspoons fine sea salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons organic coconut sugar or maple sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin or 1 teaspoon ground cumin plus 1 teaspoon whole cumin for a nuttier taste
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground red Sichuan peppercorn see notes
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- a pinch of cayenne pepper to taste optional; add if you like spicy
- Cut the pork ribs in between bones. Individual ribs take less time to cook and will be better seasoned than a whole slab.
- Combine all seasoning ingredients: fine sea salt, coconut or maple sugar, ground cumin (or a mix of ground and whole), ground Sichuan peppercorn, sweet paprika, ground black pepper.
- Evenly mix the dry rub with pork ribs. If time permits, let it marinate for a few hours or overnight.
- Spread the ribs on a large baking tray, allowing space in between ribs so they don't touch each other. Cover the tray with foil to prevent drying out in the oven.
- In a pre-heated oven, bake the ribs for 1.5 hour at 275ºF.
- Remove the foil cover and bake for another half an hour in order for the outside to brown. Flip the ribs half way through.
- I recommend grinding your Sichuan peppercorn fresh to harvest the amazing flavour, instead of buying pre-ground.
- The following ratio makes a 1.5-cup batch: 6 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons fine sea salt, 1/3 cup cumin, 1/4 cup coconut or maple sugar, 1/4 cup ground Sichuan peppercorn, 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon ground brack pepper, 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons sweet paprika. Use 1 tablespoon of the dry rub blend per pound of pork ribs or chicken wings.