How To Make Fall-Off-The-Bone Ribs And The Best Homemade BBQ Sauce Ever!

5 from 2 votes

This easy-to-make recipe for fall-off-the-bone ribs and best ever homemade BBQ sauce will have everyone at your next dinner coming back for more!

homemade BBQ sauce

While these ribs are easy to make in the oven, they also work really well for a cookout. I often serve them with other easy to grill recipes like these Asian spiced wings and this grilled asparagus recipe.

Of all the food that I make for my friends, this homemade BBQ sauce served on fall-off-the-bone ribs is by far the most requested recipe. They have been a staple of my Super Bowl and 4th of July parties for many years, and I think some people come to the party just to eat the ribs!

There are 2 reasons this recipe is so popular:

  • The homemade BBQ sauce tastes amazing! While I usually use it on ribs, it’s also pretty darn good on chicken.
  • The meat literally falls off the bone on the ribs.

Now, before we begin, I have to confess that I am definitely not a BBQ pit master by any stretch of the imagination. And this is not even close to your traditional South Carolina BBQ sauce.

So I’m sure a few die-hard rib masters will totally disagree with the way I make my ribs.

However, if you’re looking for ribs that almost melt in your mouth and can be baked in the oven.  Or a really tasty BBQ sauce recipe that is also really easy to make, this is the ribs and BBQ sauce recipe for you!

How To Make The Best Homemade BBQ Sauce Ever!

This post may contain affiliate links. We make a small commission if you buy the products from these links (at no extra cost to you). As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. But we only recommend products we would use ourselves. For more information, click here to see our disclosures

Homemade BBQ sauce in a bowl beside some ribs

Not only does this homemade BBQ sauce taste great, it is also really, really easy to make!

1. Juice half an orange and add it to the tall saucepan.

orange peel sliced with a knife

2. Remove the insides of the juiced orange and cut the remaining orange rind into strips.

diced orange peel

3. Cut the strips into small squares and add to the pot.

homemade bbq sauce cooking on the stove

4. Add all the rest of the ingredients to the sauce pan, and bring to a boil.

5. Cook for about 5 minutes and remove from heat.

That’s it! You can’t get much easier than that!

The BBQ sauce can be stored in a container in the fridge for quite some time. I’m not sure how long the expiration on this actually is, but I will say I’ve used some that has been in my refrigerator for at least 3 months…

How To Make Fall-Off-The-Bone Ribs

Melt in your mouth ribs with bbq sauce

The trick to making ribs that fall off the bone and melt in your mouth is to steam them at a relatively low temperature for a relatively long period of time.

I cut mine into individual sections before cooking them (which isn’t absolutely required, but helps speed up the cooking process).

ribs on a wire rack in a baking pan

Then arrange them in a single layer on a wire rack in a baking dish or on a cookie sheet.

Pour about 1/4 cup of water into the bottom of the dish.

Cover the ribs with tin foil (or the top of the baking dish) and cook at 350F for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

If you’re cooking a big batch of ribs, you might want to boil them instead of steaming since you can fit a lot more into a smaller space. It’s basically the same process but add them to a pot of boiling water, reduce the heat to medium low and let them cook for about an 1 1/2 hours.

For parties, you can prepare the ribs up to this point ahead of time and refrigerate them. Then continue with the rest of the steps just before the party begins, adding a few minutes to the cooking time to make sure they are heated through (I usually do an extra 10 to 15 minutes).

homemade bbq sauce being brushed on wings

Brush on the BBQ sauce and cook for another 15 or minutes or so.

You can also do this last bit of cooking on the grill if you prefer.

Serve your ribs to an appreciative crowd!

ribs and BBQ sauce

Fall Off The Bone Ribs And BBQ Sauce

This recipe for ribs and BBQ sauce has been a hit at my annual 4th of July and Super Bowl parties for years. And it’s really easy to make.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 738 kcal


  • 5 lbs pork back ribs

BBQ Sauce Ingredients

  • juice of half an orange
  • 4 narrow strips of orange rind, diced
  • ½ cup ketchup
  • ½ cup molasses
  • ½ cup onions, chopped
  • 3 whole garlic cloves
  • 1 Tbsp vinegar
  • ½ tsp prepared mustard
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 1 Tbsp thick meat sauce eg. HP Sauce or A1 Sauce
  • ½ tsp worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ tsp tabasco sauce


  • Make the BBQ sauce: 
    Combine all of the BBQ sauce ingredients in a tall saucepan. Using a tall saucepan prevents the sauce from boiling over the top. 
    Bring to a rolling boil and cook for 5 minutes. 
    Remove BBQ sauce from the heat and let cool.
  • Steam the ribs until they are cooked and falling off the bone:  
    Heat the oven to 350ºF.
    Chop ribs into sections. For parties, I usually chop the ribs into individual ribs. For serving at a sit-down dinner, you can use sections of 2 – 3 ribs. 
    Lay the ribs out in a single layer on a wire rack in a baking dish or on a cookie sheet. 
    Pour 1/2 cup of water into the bottom of the dish. 
    Cover with foil. 
    Bake for 1½ to 2 hours. 
    For parties, ribs can be cooked to this point ahead of time and then refrigerated.
  • Finish the ribs: 
    Brush the ribs with the bar-b-q sauce. 
    Bake uncovered at 400° F for 15 minutes. 
    If the ribs were refrigerated before this step, reduce the heat to 350ºF and add 10 to 15 minutes to the cooking time. 
    This step can also be done on the grill. If you prefer.


  • If you are preparing for a party, you can steam the ribs ahead of time and store them in the refrigerator. Just before the party, brush on the bar-b-q sauce and re-heat for a half hour at 350º F. Then turn up the heat to 400° F for a few minutes to brown the tops (or if you prefer, you can grill them for about 30 minutes over a medium fire, turning once).
  • If you need to cook a lot of ribs at one time, you can boil them instead of steaming. Just fill a pot 1/4 full with water and bring to a boil. Then add in the ribs and cook for about 1 1/2 hours.


Serving: 1 serving | Calories: 738 kcal | Carbohydrates: 25.7 g | Protein: 54.9 g | Fat: 46.4 g | Cholesterol: 195.6 mg | Sodium: 530.8 mg | Sugar: 22.9 g

Nutrition values are estimates only, using online calculators. Please verify using your own data.

courseMain Course
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Have comments or questions about our fall-off-the-bone ribs and best ever homemade BBQ sauce? Tell us in the section below.

This post was originally published on January 18, 2015 but was updated with new content on December 17, 2023.

Sharing is caring!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating