Competition Rib Recipe

Competition Rib Recipe with Heath Riles

Competition Rib Recipe with Heath Riles

Pit Master Heath Riles from Heath Riles BBQ stopped by for this video to show me his secrets to winning rib competitions. Heath has won the Rib Team of the year in the MBN Competition BBQ Circuit for the past 4 years; (He’s well on his way to locking up a fifth title) so he knows a little something about cooking ribs. I’m thankful he’s willing to share his technique with us. Heath cooks Heritage Farms Cheshire Pork in bbq competitions. This meat is known for its’ superior marbling and flavor. Competition Rib Recipe The ribs are given a quick trim to remove and excess fat or sinew and he pulls the membrane off the back. For KCBS contest Heath cooks 4-6 slabs of St. Louis cut ribs and for MBN contests he cooks 12 slabs of the loin back ribs which are a Memphis staple. Competition Rib Recipe The ribs get a light coat of yellow mustard; then a generous layer of his Garlic Jalapeño seasoning; followed by medium layers of his signature Pecan Rub and Honey Rub. The same process is repeated on both sides, and he seasons the ribs about 20 minutes prior to going on the pit. For this cook Heath used my Traeger grill running at 275⁰ with a mixture of Hickory and Cherry pellets for smoke flavor. The ribs go on the grill for about 2- 2 ½ hours or until the rub adheres to the meat and then they’re wrapped. Competition Rib Recipe In the wrap apply a light layer of Honey rub and lay the slab meat side down. Add a touch more Honey rub to the back side and ¾ cup of Heath’s Butter Bath mixture (it’s a powdered form of Brown Sugar, Butter, Honey, and other spices mixed with apple juice). Be sure to double wrap the ribs so the bones don’t poke through the foil. Competition Rib Recipe The ribs go back on the pit for an hour to tenderize and Heath pulls them off the pit when the internal temperature reaches 204 – 208⁰. We always use a Thermapen to check internal temp of anything we are cooking. Competition Rib Recipe He carefully takes the each slab out of the foil wrap and dust the back side with his Sweet Rub and light glaze (1 cup Sweet BBQ Sauce & ½ cup Tangy Vinegar). Then repeats the same process on the meat side. The ribs go back on the pit for 15-20 minutes to set the glaze and then it’s time to serve them to the judges. Competition Rib Recipe Competition Rib Recipe These ribs had a beautiful appearance and perfect texture, but the best part was the flavor. Competition Rib Recipe The rub combination and tangy sweet glaze brought out the richness in the Cheshire Pork. I see why Heath is a rib champion! Malcom Reed Connect on Facebook Follow me on Twitter Subscribe to my YouTube Channel Find me on Google+ Follow me on Instagram Buy Killer Hogs Products Here

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35 responses to “Competition Rib Recipe with Heath Riles”

  1. Lou Demontreux says:

    Another great video! I will definitely be trying these real soon!

    • Rob Rapier says:

      I have cooked my Ribs using this exact recipe Heath demonstrated with Malcom. Total home run over the fence success. Great balance of flavor. Being a KCBS, SCA, and NWBA judge I know something about appearance, taste, and texture. Two thumbs up.

  2. Jerry Freeman says:


  3. Andy says:

    After watching your youtube video of this recipe, I purchased Heath’s products off of your website and I’ll be smoking some ribs like this Thursday for my employees.

  4. Ty says:

    What changes are you going to make based on what Heath taught you? What will you not change? Basically, how are you going to beat him? I would love to watch a video of you answering this question (while cooking ribs of course).

  5. Henry says:

    Do uou have your own line of spices and where do i get that butter bath

  6. Bob Brode says:

    How would you barbecue venison ribs how long and what temperature .?

  7. Tyler says:

    do different smokers add different elements to food?

  8. JAMES R. says:


  9. Kenny says:

    Hey Malcom, do you not rest your ribs?

  10. Wallyk says:

    Hey Malcolm……why use a premium or brand name pork rib like Compart if your going to be adding unnatural rubs and then using a synthetic butter bath that seems to only disguise the flavor of the meat? Or is competition BBQ about one bite and getting that right? Seems like a big difference between the treatment of a premium pork product and all these rubs and baths.

  11. Rob Metcalf says:

    Great recipe! I’m new to comp bbq so this will be a “no brainer” to most. What’s the difference between a competition recipe and something I would serve at a 4th of July gathering?

  12. WhitC says:

    How do you cook these over a charcoal grill and keep the coals hot enough? In the past I have cooked them over indirect heat with a drip pan. If you have some youtube links to share that would be awesome. Also, so glad you guys have an app now!

  13. Jeremy Nicholson says:

    Quick question me and my buddy are on a rib kick and he just smoked some ribs on a pit boss pellet and after he finished his ribs he had no shrinkage? Could you tell me what have might have gone wrong.

  14. Larry McCurley says:

    How long can the extra butter bath mix be saved in the refrigerator and still be safe for use

  15. Tom Burrill says:

    Hey Malcom,
    I made these ribs and two racks of Baby Back ribs using the combination of three of your different rib recipes.
    The Baby Back were really good eating ribs however, the Heath Riles ribs were unbelievable!
    His combination of spices were incredible, my son tells me they were the best ribs he has ever eaten.
    Thank you for sharing your knowledge and recipes to us Backyard Quers!
    If you have ever thought of moving to Massachusetts, the house next door is for sale!!

  16. Scott Shepard says:

    Malcom, thanks for all the great videos and tips. I have a question about the knife you used there in the video. Did you say it a Dalstrong and if so which one and I live to see more about some of the other accessories like the knives and thermometers that you use.

  17. Javin Allen Mirafuentes says:

    Malcom just got into bbq and smoking meats, thanks to you lol. I just bought a traeger because it seemed like the easiest to use. What I did noticed 3 cooks in is I’m not getting any smoke flavor from it. I basically follow the recipes from your youtube channel, like the jack daniels ribs but I noticed that you dont use traegers. Do pellet smokers just not get much flavor? Or am I not using it correct? Do pellet smokers have to run at a lower temp and longer to get the flavor?

  18. Jeremy says:

    Hi Malcom, could this recipe be used for beef ribs?

  19. Jeff B. says:

    I love you brother!! You have made my learning to smoke just absolutely amazing! I did my 1st beer can chicken and it was the best chicken i’ve ever had. Other than the skin was not crispy. Thanks for your great videos

  20. Dixye Van Duyne says:

    Hi Malcom!
    We are making these ribs for our 4th of July family celebration on our Traeger. I’m just wondering if you can tell me about how long these ribs take to complete? I just kinda need an ideal of what time to tell my family we are eating. I live in Denver, Colorado if that’s makes a difference. Thank you for your help.

  21. Tim Story says:

    Hi Malcom,
    Some of my family is lactose intolerant. If I were to make my own “butter bath” would margarine work or do you suggest something different?

    Love what you are doing and am so happy for your success.


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