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Favorite Short-cut Baby Back Ribs are made in the oven and come out consistently good time after time. This recipe is a delicious way to enjoy ribs all year round!

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Baby back ribs on cutting board


Finger-licking, fall-off-the-bone ribs are perfect for busy weeknights. I cook them in the oven then quickly sear them on the grill. However, you don’t have to turn on the grill at all if you don’t want to. You can broil them in the oven for a few minutes instead.

Short-cut Baby Back Ribs


For oven cooking, I prefer baby back ribs. They’re smaller and cook faster.

When buying baby back ribs make sure they have an even layer of meat across the rack. You do not want one end to be thick with meat and no meat on the other. Also look for no bone showing through, when cooked they’ll fall apart. The bones should be covered with meat.



After opening the package of ribs, dry them with paper towels. Meat side up, trim any dangling meat and excessive fat. Turn the ribs over and remove the tough membrane, called silver skin, connecting the ribs. You can run the tip of your knife under the membrane then pull it off holding it with a paper towel. Discard the membrane. Finally, inspect the ribs for any bone fragments and remove them.

Now you’re ready to season the ribs. Season both sides, ends, and edges.



There are 13 ribs in a slab of baby back ribs. One slab will feed two adults. (For spare ribs, you can feed 3 adults with one slab.)

ribs on smoker
This is a very tasty alternative to smoking. The addition of liquid smoke in the BBQ sauce helps get that smoky flavor. The key is baking them slowly until they’re done then charring them on the grill for 10 minutes with the sauce.
An optional cooking method for ribs and Boston butt is on a pellet smoker. We enjoy this recipe, Smoked Pulled Pork, that’s cooked on a Traeger. 

For our method for smoking ribs see this post.


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Favorite Short-cut Baby Back Ribs are made in the oven and come out consistently good time after time.

Favorite Short-cut Baby Back Ribs

Favorite Short-cut Baby Back Ribs are made in the oven and come out consistently good time after time. This recipe is a delicious way to enjoy ribs all year round!
Author: Paula
5 from 10 votes
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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
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  • 2 full racks baby back ribs
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons salt and pepper for ribs


  • 2 Tablespoons canola oil
  • cup minced onion
  • 1 and ½ cups water
  • ½ cup tomato paste
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons honey
  • 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 and ½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 Tablespoon whiskey
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika


  • Sprinkle salt and pepper on both sides of the ribs. Wrap each slab of ribs in aluminum foil and bake in a preheated 275°F oven for 2 and ½ hours.


  • While ribs are cooking, make the sauce. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Sauté onions until they begin to brown. Add remaining ingredients and simmer for 1 hour, uncovered, or until sauce thickens. Remove from heat and set aside.


  • Preheat the grill to 400°F. When ribs are finished cooking in the oven, the meat should have pulled away from the bone at the end about ½-inch. You can return them to the oven to cook longer if they're not as tender as you want. Remove the ribs from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes.
  • When the grill is heated, remove ribs from foil and put them on the grill. Grill for 4 to 5 minutes per side. They should be slightly charred when ready.
  • Brush BBQ sauce on the ribs just before they come off; careful not to add the sauce too early as it may burn. Remove the ribs from the grill and allow them to rest for 5 to 10 minutes (if you can wait that long) before serving.


Calories: 363kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 32mg | Sodium: 1253mg | Potassium: 565mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 41g | Vitamin A: 561IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 54mg | Iron: 2mg
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  1. I have cooked these ribs for my friends and myself and we just love them, don’t remember how I got the recipe, but am so glad, making them again tomorrow as they are so delicious. Thank you for sharing

  2. 5 stars
    Made this this weekend and they were a hit with everyone!! The homemade BBQ is so worth it!

  3. 5 stars
    Perfect for Sunday supper. I like the idea of using the grill for the added crispness and the sauce.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Wishes for tasty dishes,

  4. 5 stars
    Do you remove the silver skin on the backside of the ribs before you bake them?

  5. Looks great! Eighteen days a year — hmmmm —I agree it is WAY more than that. Even if it is 24 hour days they are talking about! Happy New Year and thanks so much for linking on Busy Monday!

5 from 10 votes (4 ratings without comment)

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Your email address will not be published. Have you tried this recipe? Consider giving it 5 stars!