If you love great ribs, then you’ll go crazy for these Chinese sticky ribs!
Chinese Sticky Ribs For Chinese New Year
Mark your calendar for February 16! That’s the date of Chinese New Year and this year is year of the dog! Being a dog lover, I find it very appealing.
I’m planning to have a little celebration at my office that evening and these sticky ribs will be center stage since they are one of my all-time favorites. They’re delicious and very easy so this recipe is a winner on both ends.
Marinate Longer Than Usual
Most marinating times are between 4-12 hours.
These ribs require a bit longer so the full flavor can infuse. One full day, 24 hours, is necessary for that to occur. Less time will produce less flavor. But I would caution that you marinate at least 12 hours if you are pressed for time, so you must take this into account when planning to make these ribs.
On the contrary, longer than 24 hours if perfectly fine, unlike other recipes. These get better as they chill out in the marinade!
Last but not least, you get to use some of that marinade for the glaze. There is no danger in using it, even though the raw meat sat in it because you cook it and reduce it down to a syrup. The heat and subsequent reduction will kill any bacteria that was in it. And this reduction has an amazing flavor too.
Where most of my rib recipes can use three different cooking methods, there is only one that can be used for this recipe because it produces excellent results. While I tend to use my Instant Pot for the majority of my rib recipes, it really doesn’t work with this one.
The oven-roasting method is the one to use here. If you are lucky enough to have a convection setting in your oven, that’s the way to go on this one. My new range has the choice of “convection bake” and “convection roast.” I used the latter setting and the results were perfect and in slightly less time than a conventional oven setting. However, if you don’t have the convection convenience, then by all means roasting on a conventional setting at the same temp will give you perfect ribs, but it’ll just take a little more time.
- 2 racks (about 3-4 lbs each) pork baby back ribs
- 2 cups low-sodium soy sauce
- 1½ cups sugar
- 1 cup gin (see NOTES)
- 2 tsp grated fresh ginger -OR- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 6 large cloves garlic, crushed
- ¼ cup honey
- Remove membrane covering the bones on the back side of the ribs. Cut ribs into 2-rib portions.
- Mix all marinade ingredients until honey and the sugar is dissolved—you may warm it in the microwave to make this easier, but do not let it boil.
- Place ribs in a single layer either in a large glass or ceramic dish -OR- in zipper freezer bags. I use the zipper freezer bags because it makes clean up easier. I needed 4 gallon-sized bags to do these ribs. You may need more or less depending on the size of the rack(s).
- Pour marinade over ribs -OR- divide it equally in each bag. Place in the refrigerator for 24 hours, turning once during the marinating time.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with foil or parchment. Lay ribs, bone side down on the pan. Reserve 1 cup of the marinade; discard the rest.
- Roast ribs for 1½ - 2 hours.
- While the ribs are roasting, pour the marinade into a small saucepan and reduce until it’s slightly syrupy over medium heat; set aside.
- When the ribs are almost done, brush them with the reduced marinade, turn the oven up to 400 degrees F until the marinade on the ribs begins to bubble--about 10 minutes.
- Serve immediately.