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How to Make a Dry Rub for Barbecue

Learn what ingredients to put in a dry rub from Pork Barrel BBQ pitmasters Heath Hall and Brett Thompson in this Howcast video.


There are a number of ways to impart flavor in your next bar-b-que meal. One of the simplest is through a dry-rub. Today we're going to talk about dry-rub fundamentals. The most important thing is a well balanced rub that has sweetness, has heat, and has an earthy undertone.

Some of the seasonings and spices you may chose to use include sugars, like turbinado sugar, brown sugar, even white sugar. Also salt. We prefer kosher salt to regular table salt. Chilies. This really depends on the heat level that you're looking for. Are you looking for something really spicy, moderately spicy, or lightly spicy? You could use chipotle or crushed red pepper flakes, like ground cayenne, ancho chili, jalapeno chilies. There's just a lot of chilies out there. Really depends on your preference and heat level you're going for.

In the earthy level, look for garlic. We like granulated garlic, onion, cumin, coriander. Also in the herbs, it's nice to incorporate some herbs into a real balanced rub. You might choose some oregano or some cilantro or some basil.

The real important thing to stress with a rub is that you're making it for your flavor profile. What do you like, and what do you want? You want it sweet, and you want it hot. You want it to be really earthy. What are you using it on? Are you using it on something that might call for a more Mediterranean flavor? Something that might call for a more Cajun flavor? Something that might call for a more traditional bar-b-que flavor? Think about all these things when you're putting together a rub. Remember, the fundamentals are a well-balanced product that has both sweetness, heat, and earthy undertones.

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