• Sticky beef short ribs with bourbon-laced barbecue sauce (Smith Street Books)Source: Smith Street Books

Slow roasted for 2.5 hours then basted and barbecued, sticky and tender ribs take time, but pay dividends - big time. 






Skill level

Average: 2.8 (168 votes)


  • 2 kg (4 lb 6 oz) beef short ribs, cut between bones into single ribs
  • apple & cabbage slaw, to serve (optional)

Spice rub

  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tsp sea salt flakes
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 80 ml (2½ fl oz/⅓ cup) olive oil

Barbecue sauce

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 long red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 80 ml (2½ fl oz/⅓ cup) cider vinegar
  • 45 g (1½ oz/¼ cup softly packed) soft brown sugar
  • 170 ml (5½ fl oz/⅔ cup) tomato passata (puréed tomatoes)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 80 ml (2½ fl oz/⅓ cup) pure maple syrup
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 80 ml (2½ fl oz/⅓ cup) bourbon

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Marinating time: 2 hours

To make the spice rub, combine the ingredients in a small bowl. Coat the ribs with the rub, massaging the seasoning in well. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F).

Place the ribs in a baking tin in a single layer. Cook for 2–2½ hours until tender.

Meanwhile, to make the barbecue sauce, heat the oil in a medium-sized saucepan over medium–low heat. Cook the onion, stirring occasionally for 8–10 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and chilli and cook for a further 4 minutes. Add the vinegar, sugar, passata, lemon juice, maple syrup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce and bourbon. Stir to combine and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes or until it develops a thick pouring consistency. Season to taste and set aside to cool.

Preheat a barbecue grill to medium high and lightly grease with oil.

Brush the ribs with barbecue sauce and cook, turning regularly and basting, for 20–30 minutes until a charred and sticky crust forms. Serve with remaining barbecue sauce and, if desired, apple & cabbage slaw.


Recipe from Feed The Man Meat (Smith Street Books).