Juicy Bourbon Maple Ribs on a cutting board

Juicy and Tender Bourbon Maple Spare Ribs

It’s that time of year that we gather around for weekend cookouts and celebrations. Ribs are usually always on the menu because that’s a crowd pleaser that makes everyone happy. And best of all, this bourbon maple marinade hits the spot. This is always a treat to share with friends and it’s a hearty comfort food that we love treating ourselves to. Now that the weather is warming up it’s fun to start cooking for bigger groups again.

Video: Amazing Oven Baked Pork Ribs:

Cooking. Going out to a movie. Going for a walk and holding the hand of someone you love. Watching or playing sports. Curling up to a book. These seemingly trivial acts are often places of comfort and help remind us of the pleasures in life. Gather friends into our homes and allow ourselves to laugh and cheer.  That is what comfort and all of its trivialities does. That is why we share.

Here is one of our favorite comfort foods, ribs. To be specific, Bourbon-Maple glazed St. Louis cut spare ribs. Sweet from the maple, a tinge of smokiness from the bourbon, and cooked to nearly fall off the meat packed-bone tender. These are cooked using the same method we used for the Sriracha-Hoisin ribs.  And with the bourbon open, go ahead and pour yourself a little sip.

-Diane and Todd

Oven Baked Bourbon Maple Spare Ribs Recipe @whiteonrice

Oven Baked Bourbon Maple Spare Ribs Recipe @whiteonrice

How to Make Bourbon Maple Ribs in Oven

Baking Dish MethodQuick & Easy! Cut the racks in half if needed to fit in your baking dish. Pour some apple juice over the rib & season with salt & pepper, cover with foil and then bake. After the first hour, brush both sides of ribs with sauce. Finish baking uncovered, brushing with sauce another couple times.

Juicy Bourbon Maple Ribs step by step photos

Foil “Boat” MethodGreat for easier cleanup! Cut the racks in half to help make them more manageable. Create foil “boats” out of a double layer of foil. After the first hour, brush both sides of ribs with sauce. Keep foil sides upright to keep the juices surrounding the ribs as you finish baking, brushing the ribs with the sauce a couple more times.

Air Fryer Ribs – We’ve also developed recipes for cooking ribs in the air fryer our ebook Air Fryer Easy Meals. They came our surprisingly awesome and now is one of our favorite ways to cook ribs. Using the cooking methods in the ebook, you can use the Bourbon-Maple sauce or any other of your favorite sauces to cook some amazing air fryer ribs.

Try our other popular Rib Recipes Here

Asian Baked Pork Ribs Recipe with Sriracha Hoisin Sauce @whiteonrice

Asian Baked Pork Ribs Recipe with Sriracha Hoisin Sauce @whiteonrice

spare ribs recipe

This recipe was originally published in 2012 and re-published in 2019 with a new video.

Bourbon-Maple Glazed Pork Ribs - Oven Baked

The St. Louis cut spare rib is a great meaty cut, but this recipe will work equally well with baby back ribs. If you want to offer a bit of variance to your guests, make the Sriracha-Hoisin rib glaze as well and serve up a sweeter rib (this one) and a spicier rib (the sriracha-hoisin) to please the crowd.
5 from 5 votes



  • 3 pound rack St. Louis cut (preferably) Spare Ribs (1360g) , rinsed and patted dry
  • 1 Tablespoon Kosher Salt or Sea Salt (15g)
  • fresh cracked Black Pepper to taste
  • 1 cup Apple Juice (240ml)

Bourbon-Maple Glaze

  • 1/2 cup Apple Juice (120ml)
  • 1/2 cup Maple Syrup (120ml)
  • 1/4 cup Bourbon (60ml)
  • 1/4 cup Tomato Paste (60ml)
  • 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar (15ml)
  • 1 Tablespoon Fish Sauce (15ml) (optional but very tasty)
  • 2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar (30g)
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt or Sea Salt (5g)


Sauce Instructions

  • *This can be done while the ribs bake for the initial hour.  Combine sauce ingredients in a saucepan (apple juice, maple syrup, bourbon, tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, fish sauce-optional, brown sugar, and salt). Cook on medium-high heat, bring to a simmer then cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Set aside until ready to sauce ribs.

Ribs Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). If needed, remove the silver skin from the bone side of the ribs (some butchers will have this already removed for you.)
  • Cut the rib rack in half and place the ribs, meaty side up, in a 9x11 inch baking dish (or other appropriately sized dish). Pour the apple juice over the ribs and then season both sides with salt & pepper. Cover with aluminum foil.
  • Bake for 1 hour. Remove from oven, remove foil, and brush both sides of the ribs with sauce.
  • Return ribs to oven uncovered. Bake for another 45 minutes uncovered. Brush the ribs with sauce again.
  • Check the tenderness of the ribs. Bake for another 15-45 minutes, depending on how tender you like your ribs.
  • Remove ribs from oven. Brush the ribs a with a little more sauce, slice & serve (for a little extra crust follow next step before slicing).
  • Optional for a little extra crust - Heat oven to broil and place oven rack about 6 inches down from the top. Brush ribs with glaze again and broil for 2 minutes or until slightly singed. Slice & serve.


For an easier cleanup, you can bake the ribs in a foil "boats". 
  1. Make 2 “boats” out of doubled up sheets of heavy duty foil large enough to enclose each rib section (*refer to sriracha-hoisin ribs photos for visual guide). Place ribs, meaty side up, in boats and pour 1/2 cup of apple juice in each of the boats.
  2. Seal foil boats closed around the ribs, trapping the juice in with the ribs and being careful not to break the foil. Place on sheet pans. Bake as directed in the recipe above (however leaving the foil open but with the sides standing up enough to keep the juices around the ribs when it calls to bake uncovered). 


Nutrition Information per Serving

Calories: 696kcal, Carbohydrates: 47g, Protein: 27g, Fat: 40g, Saturated Fat: 13g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 136mg, Sodium: 2955mg, Potassium: 787mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 41g, Vitamin A: 251IU, Vitamin C: 4mg, Calcium: 91mg, Iron: 2mg