A fantastic homemade dry rub that’s great on Pork and Chicken
This homemade dry rub builds upon our our basic rub and adds more complexity and flavors to really provide a wow factor to your next BBQ pork recipe.
How to Make a Homemade Dry Rub
If you’re new to making dry rubs, I suggest you start there, then come here for this, more advanced, recipe.
In that post we lay out the fundamentals of a good simple dry rub. If you want the basics, check out that post as it details the components of a great dry rub and how you can develop your own flavors, and why those work the way they do.
In that article we emphasize the components of a good dry rub for pork. Now EVERY single BBQ pro, chef, home cook, writer, grill master, pit master, you name it… will have their own take on a good dry rub. What it comes down to is finding a flavor profile that works for YOU.
What Ingredients are in a Dry Rub?
For us it’s a 1:1 ratio of Sugar to Everything Else.
What do I mean by that?
- We take one part sugar (in this case use one cup to keep it simple).
- Then take part (one cup) and fill it with the other spices.
Here’s a quick recap of what I mean and an explanation of other spices we use?
To summarize our previous article on dry rubs we always keep the three S’s in mind: Sweet, Savory, Spice (aka heat)
- Sweet: what we start with. Brown sugar (dark brown or light brown), cane or turbinado. This will help to create a caramelized crusty exterior (bark). To balance the sugar, this is where the savory comes in.
- Savory: things like salt, onion powder, garlic powder, dry mustard, chili powder (which is simply a blend of dried chilies), cumin, paprika, celery salt, and more.
- Spice: cayenne pepper, red chili flakes, or dried chipotle. Add these slowly (like 1 teaspoon or tablespoon at a time).
Don’t be nervous about adding spice! This will help balance the sugar (I promise!).
Our Basic Dry Rub recipe is quite simple (there’s only 4 ingredients in it). If you’re ready to do something with a little more flavor and punch we’ve got this one for you.
Ultimate Dry Rub for Pork and Chicken
I call it the ultimate because it’s truly the rub we use on most pork dishes. Though it works great for chicken too (as long as you’re cooking your chicken low and slow. Note that sugar will start to burn when you cook at a high temperature).
Recipe for Homemade Dry Rub
This recipe builds upon our Basic Dry Rub and adds more complexity and bold flavors to really provide a wow factor to your next BBQ pork recipe.
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup kosher salt (we use Diamond Crystal kosher salt)
- 4 tablespoons smoked paprika
- 2 tablespoons coarse black pepper
- 1/2 tablespoon cumin
- 1/2 tablespoon onion powder
- 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Combine all ingredients together in a bowl. Transfer to an air tight serving container (like a mason jar or other dry rub container). Will keep for up to a year if sealed tight and kept in a cool place.
This yields about 2 1/2 cups. I know that's not the perfect 1:1 ratio. That ratio is meant to be a starting point. You start with that, then add to adjust flavors to your personal preferences. We love savory flavors, so go a little heavier on that S.
Make a large batch of this and you've got it ready to go all summer long.
A Note About Salt
We get feedback across the board about salt. Salt is a very subjective taste. Also, the salt in your pantry matters when making dry rubs. We use Diamond Crystal or Jacobsen kosher salt. We do not use iodized table salt. Salt will be different weights, even among kosher variety. So no two salt companies will measure the same. You have permission to adjust based upon the type of salt you have, and we encourage kosher salt.
Pro Tip – You cannot remove salt, so go light on the salt portions first then add based upon your taste. If you added too much, the best offset to salt is sugar.
How to store homemade Dry Rub
This will yield just over 2 cups of dry rub. Keep this stored in an air tight container in the pantry and use throughout the summer on your favorite pork recipes.
Try this Ultimate Homemade Dry Rub on:
- Pork Belly Burnt Ends
- Smoked Ribs
- Smoked Pork Butt (and Pulled Pork Sandwiches)
- Grilled Chicken with Blackberry BBQ Sauce
- … and more.
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