A barbecue dry rub or spice rub is simply a mixture of spices to rub on your barbecue meats before going on the grill. Most recipes will call for rubs to be put on the raw meat in advance so the meat can marinate in the spices. This is an excellent way to add flavor to the meat without relying on barbecue sauce. All the spices in your rub should be ground down (like cracked peppercorns, rosemary seeds, etc). Ground spices normally have a shelf-life of about a year before they start to lose their flavor, so use freshly ground herbs and spices to get the most out of your rubs.
There are almost as many rubs on the market as barbecue sauces, but there's no need to buy them when you can make your own signature spice rub with fresher spices and customize it to your liking.
Here's my recipe for a great go-to pork rub/rib rub for any pork recipe. Its subtle enough for the leaner cuts and has a great flavor for pork ribs or even my Easy Pulled Pork recipe.
Yield: Makes about 3 cups
Prep time: 10 minutes
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup turbinado sugar (Sugar in the Raw)
1/3 cup sweet Hungarian paprika
1/4 cup kosher salt
1 tbsp black pepper
1/2 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp ground ginger
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp ground rosemary
1/2 tsp basil (grind if large)
Combine all ingredients and mix with a whisk to break up the ingredients. Grind the rosemary and basil in a coffee grinder or with a mortar/pestl to make a uniform mix of spices.>
The rub will store for months in a tightly sealed jar or zip-loc bag. Just run a whisk through it to break up any chunks.
Enjoy your barbecue!