Pecan Pie Ribs on the Deep South Smokers GC42

Pecan Pie Ribs on the Deep South Smokers GC42

If you like taking a walk on the wild side, you’re going to love experimenting with my Pecan Pie Ribs. This delicious recipe has “holidays” written all over it. I took juicy ribs and seasoned them with my best-selling Pecan Rub.  I finished the ribs with a delicious pecan pie glaze that will give anyone a sweet tooth.

I love creating new recipes that are off the beaten path and the holidays always seem to strike inspiration. These ribs would be a fabulous addition to any party, game day, or family gathering. I know you’ll be just as obsessed with them as I am! 

Pecan Pie Ribs on the Deep South Smokers GC42

If you love hands-on recipes, you’ll have a blast making my Pecan Pie Ribs. These ribs are seasoned, wrapped, and glazed with a homemade topping. I find it incredibly relaxing to be in the kitchen, especially when the return on investment is this tasty. 

The Ingredients

Like most of my recipes, these Pecan Pie Ribs come together with less than 10 ingredients. A lot of these elements are found in most kitchens. Here’s what you need to add to your shopping cart. 

  • Heath Riles BBQ Pecan Rub. This unique rub has a savory flavor with a hint of sweetness on the back end. It’s a great addition to pork, beef, ribs, chicken, seafood, and fish. I recommend adding nutty wood chips when you cook your food. It’s the perfect combination! 
  • Heath Riles BBQ Hot BBQ Rub. I used this rub in my entry for the 2022 Memphis in May Rib Championship. It helped me bring home the gold! I know it’ll be a winner in your book, too. This rub features brown sugar, paprika, and a blend of spices that give chicken, beef, and pork a kick. I sprinkled this rub over my sweet glaze to add a hint of heat. Don’t let the name fool you; this rub is mild enough that even children adore it. 
  • Prairie Fresh Prime Baby Back Ribs. If you’ve been around for a while, you’ve heard me rave about Prairie Fresh. This brand uses only the best ingredients in their meat, and everything I’ve made turns out superb. You can find this brand at many local grocery stores, such as Costco.
  • Apple Juice. Since these ribs are sweet, I chose to wrap them in apple juice. Apple juice and pork are a great combination. I often use apple juice in my injection mixture, but this recipe called for strong fruit notes without fuss. It added a lot of moisture even though I didn’t use much. 
  • Glaze. I created a homemade glaze by combining butter, brown sugar, heavy cream, Karo syrup, and butter extract. The texture of this glaze is wonderful; not too sticky or sweet when paired with my amazing rubs. 

Homemade glazes taste so much better than storebought and are easy to make. Once you try them, you’ll never go back. Don’t just take my word for it; try it for yourself! 

The Smoker Setup

Here’s the main equipment I used for this recipe. You can find more of my favorite grilling accessories in the equipment and tools section. 

  • Gravity-fed smoker. I used the Deep South Smokers GC42 for this cook. This pit is a gravity-fed smoker, meaning the heat is indirect. Usually, the heat source will be off the side, and gravity works its magic to pull the heat where it needs to go. This smoker is amazing if you cook a lot of dishes at once. It has three racks with room for three big pans on each one. That’s about 8-10 pork butts! To see this pit in action, check out the recipe video.
  • Charcoal. I stoked the pit with Royal Oak Charcoal. I love this brand because they don’t include any fillers in their product. The charcoal holds its heat and releases a good, pure smoke. I use this charcoal almost every time I cook and have never had a bad experience. 

The Process for Making Pecan Pie Ribs

You can find a detailed demonstration of this recipe in the video and recipe card near the bottom of this post. For now, enjoy this brief overview of how I made my Pecan Pie Ribs. 

  • Fire up the pit. I stoked the GC42 with Royal Oak Charcoal and fired it up to 300℉. 
  • Prep the ribs. While the grill was heating up, I removed the ribs from their packaging and took off the membrane. The ribs in my video and featured image are trimmed “competition-style,” so they look smaller. I used them because I had them on hand, but any style of ribs works like a charm. You can trim the ribs to your liking - your kitchen, your rules. 
  • Add seasoning. I usually use a binder, but this recipe does not need one. I laid down a thick layer of my Pecan Rub, then let it sweat in for 5 minutes. I turned the ribs over and repeated the process. 
  • Start smoking. I laid the ribs straight on the grill racks and let them go for about 1 ½ hours. I knew the ribs were done when I ran my finger across them, and no rub came off. That’s what I call the smear test, which comes in handy during competitions. 
  • Wrap the ribs. Once the ribs passed the smear test, I took them off the grill. I double-lined a baking sheet with heavy-duty aluminum foil.  I folded the foil over the ribs, leaving a small opening for the juice. Then, I poured in about ½ a small bottle of apple juice. I repeated the process for every slab of ribs. I set the wrapped ribs back on the grill for another hour.
  • Make the glaze. When the ribs were close to done, I made my glaze. I placed the butter, brown sugar, heavy cream, Karo syrup, and butter extract in a saucepan over medium-low heat. I warmed the ingredients until homogenous and set them aside. The mixture should look glossy and smooth.
  • Glaze the ribs. I let the ribs rest until they were cool enough to handle. Then, I sprinkled them with a little Hot BBQ Rub. I brushed the glaze over the ribs, then turned them over and coated the other side. I sprinkled just a little more Hot Rub over the top. I finished the ribs off with a sprinkle of pecan halves. The only thing left to do is dig in! 

The Results

The ribs came off the grill with a gorgeous bark. They were so juicy and tender that I could tear them apart with my hands. Every bite was filled with decadent seasoning, and the nutty notes shone through. 

The glaze added the perfect balance of sweet and savory, making these off-the-wall ribs a total winner in my book. This recipe is sure to please a crowd. 

Serving Suggestions for Pecan Pie Ribs

These ribs are fabulous on their own, but if you want a spread, you can always pair them with cornbread, a side salad, and a nice cold beer. 

Storing Leftover Pecan Pie Ribs

You can store leftover ribs in the fridge for up to 4 days. You can also freeze them for up to 4 months. To reheat the ribs, thaw them in the refrigerator, then heat them at 350℉ until warmed through. 

Equipment and Tools

Gravity-fed smoker, Royal Oak Charcoal , paper towels, cutting board, heavy-duty aluminum foil, baking pansThermoWorks Thermapen ONE, YETI Tundra 65 Hard Cooler, and insulated gloves for handling meat.

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