Slow Low Oven Ribs

When you live with a Southern man, there are certain words you can say that are pretty much guaranteed to make him light up like a Christmas tree.  Grits.  Fried okra.  Fried peach pies from The Varsity in Atlanta.  (This last one is a pure tease, since we live about 15 hours from the Varsity.)  And if all else fails…ribs.  He does love ’em.  And while you can always go the grill route with ribs, as with my dad’s famous Coca-Cola Ribs, my other favorite, less complicated and fool-proof way is to cook them low and slow right in the oven.

This recipe is from the delightful cookbook Screen Doors and Sweet Tea: Recipes and Tales from a Southern Cook, and if you have a long lazy day that you’d like to have end with some tender, juicy ribs, here’s your recipe.  You make a quick and simple sauce of tomatoes, onion, garlic, maple syrup, soy sauce and red pepper, and then pour half of it over some country style pork ribs.  Cover the pan with foil and pop it in the oven for about three hours.  Take a nice long nap.  Take the foil off and pour the other half of the sauce on, and cook the ribs for another hour or so.  Your sauce will get nice and thick and your ribs will have slow-cooked into tender wonderfulness.

Now if you serve these ribs with some cheese grits on the side, it will almost make up for not living next door to the Varsity.  Almost.

Slow Low Oven Ribs, from Screen Doors and Sweet Tea: Recipes and Tales from a Southern Cook 

Slow Low Oven Ribs
  • Two 14.5 oz cans diced tomatoes with juice
  • ¼ cup chopped sweet onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 4 pounds country style pork ribs
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Combine tomatoes, onion, garlic and red pepper in a small saucepan and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes. Stir in maple syrup and soy sauce.
  2. Preheat oven to 300 and line a 13x9 inch baking dish with foil. Place the bay leaves in the bottom of the dish.
  3. Season the ribs with salt and pepper and lay them in the baking dish. Pour half of the sauce over them, turning them a few times to coat them with the sauce. Cover the pan tightly with foil.
  4. Bake for three hours, then remove the foil, pour the remaining sauce over and bake for an additional hour or so until the sauce is thick and the ribs are tender.
  5. Put the ribs on a serving platter and let stand for 15 minutes. Tilt the pan and ladle off the fat from the pan juices, and then pour the pan sauce over the ribs and serve.


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  1. PoetessWug says

    Nothing's better than low and slow oven baked country ribs!!!…except what?!!…Peach fried pie?! Where have I been?!! ^_^

  2. Joanne says

    Mmm a long slow braise is definitely what these babies need to make them fall-apart amazing! And that delicious sauce doesn't hurt either!

  3. Miss McBooty says

    I'm looking forward to trying this recipe. About how many servings does this make? I usually cook for me and maybe one other person… and I swear my cat is a vegetarian.


  4. Mary says

    Kate,this is such a nice recipe. Your ribs look delicious and I know myfamily would love them. This is my first visit to your site, so I took some time to browse through your earlier posts. I'm so glad I did that. I really like the food and recipes you share with your readers and I'll definitely be back. I hope you have a great day. Blessings…Mary.

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