Caramel Pork Ribs


I live in a small city (Reno, NV) nestled on the east side of the Sierra Nevada mountains. A short drive west takes you to amazing outdoor recreation, including Lake Tahoe. Drive any other direction and it doesn’t take you long to get to very rural countryside.

One benefit to living in a city like Reno is that it is fairly easy to find local ranchers selling pasture-raised meats (local produce is a different story; growing veggies in the high desert is tricky). I have been buying grass-fed beef from Alpine Ranch for several years now. The beef is delicious as well as nutritious, and I love supporting a local, family-owned business.

I recently purchased a quarter share of heritage Berkshire pork from Alpine Ranch. We haven’t eaten much of it yet, but what we have tried has been wonderful. The bacon is delicious! I have a giant fresh ham that I plan on roasting for Easter.

How is all this related to Cook the Book Fridays? We made Caramel Pork Ribs and I used a rack of spare ribs from my quarter share of pork!


Caramel Pork Ribs is a great recipe. It starts by making caramel. Add in brown sugar, beer, bourbon, cider vinegar, ketchup, ginger, soy sauce, harissa, Dijon mustard, and freshly ground pepper to make a wonderful sauce. The pork ribs, which have been cup up into 3-rib portions, are added to the sauce and roasted for a couple of hours. The end result is tender ribs with a flavorful, sticky sauce.

These ribs were a big hit at my house! My husband liked them a lot but said the sauce needed a little “more” (I’m guessing more tang like a barbecue sauce?). My daughter didn’t seem interested in her serving, but then I coaxed her into trying a bite, and next thing I knew her plate was clean. I will definitely be making these again.

Cook the Book Fridays is an online cooking group, currently making our way through David Lebovitz’s book, My Paris Kitchen. We don’t share his recipes (you should buy the book!), but you can find the recipe for Caramel Pork Ribs on page 187.



Filed under Cooking

9 responses to “Caramel Pork Ribs

  1. So happy that you enjoyed these! I’m jealous of your pork and beef! Sounds so yummy – and those ribs! They look perfect! Happy weekend!

  2. Your ribs looks delicious! How wonderful to get fresh supply of meat directly from the local farm!

  3. Perfect ribs. We both enjoyed these and had an extra taste tester stop by
    and loved them. Definitely a repeat recipe.

  4. Happy to hear your family like the ribs, I have a grass fed meat CSA and all we got were pork shoulder ribs, still very tasty and a nice way to make them.

  5. Emily

    I will need a third fridge or a stand-alone-freezer if we have direct access to farmers! Truly envious! Your ribs look amazing and they are indeed delicious!

  6. A share of the heritage Berkshire pork sounds so delicious even before you begin cooking. This caramel with all that sweetness is irresistible. Adding the pork – heavenly.


    Nice post, Karen. I also got my ribs from a special producer in Paso Robles, J & R Natural Meats.But unlike your ribs, mine weren’t meaty enough and I think that was at the root of my problems. I liked the taste of the sauce, there just wasn’t enough of it. Oh well. Since everyone except Candy found success with this recipe, I am faulting myself and may try again. A glutton for punishment, as I said in my post.

  8. Can you tell I’m trying to catch up on posts? I loved these ribs. I’m sure the locally raised pork made yours extra delicious.

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