Kansas City Mop Ribs

Char-Broil, America's Test Kitchen, Milk Street, Overland Gourmet, Overland Journal


  • 6 to 8 pounds pork spare ribs, long ends only

Kansas City-Style Barbecue Sauce

  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne chili 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup water or more if needed

Kansas City Dry Rub

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar 2 tablespoons ground paprika 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon garlic salt
  • 1 tablespoon celery salt
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne chili 
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard


For the sauce: Sauté onion and garlic in oil until onions are soft. Add remaining ingredients; simmer for 30 minutes or until thickened.
For the rub: Combine all dry rub ingredients in a bowl, and mix well. Store any unused rub in a sealed container in the freezer.

Sprinkle rub evenly over ribs, and let marinate for 2 hours at room temperature or overnight in a refrigerator. Prepare smoker, and place ribs on grates. Smoke at approximately 200°F for 4 hours. Baste frequently with sauce during last 30 minutes of smoking. Serve with additional sauce on the side.


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Publication of this recipe is thanks to Fox Chapel Publishing.