Standard BBQ Rub
Prep time
Total time
Here it is! My basic barbecue rub. Because it is anything but basic in flavor, I'll just call this my standard BBQ rub. This is lightly sweet, mildly hot, and just enough salt to be a rub. Because it is anything but basic, this makes a nice background that you can freely riff off of, so feel free to add herbs or other spices to this. I like to mix it up by substituting the hot pepper powders with lemon peel and lavender for fish or chicken, or just removing the chipotle pepper powder and adding in orange peel and ginger root or ginger powder for an asian spin. There really are no limits to this! Here's how to make the standard version, which is great for barbecuing, smoking, or grilling any pork or chicken dish. This makes enough rub for about four weekends of casual smoking (three or four racks of ribs, a couple of chickens or pork shoulders). If you have the luxury, cut the ingredients in half and make your rub each time you need it. A half recipe is enough for about two racks of ribs or two chickens.
Recipe type: BBQ
Cuisine: BBQ
  • 3 cups brown sugar (it doesn't matter if it's light brown or dark brown, but i do buy dark brown)
  • 1 cup paprika (buy it from the bulk store or online from
  • ⅔ cup kosher salt (I actually smoke my salt, so I use that)
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon chipotle pepper powder
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper powder (note, only 2 teaspoons. If that is too hot, cut it in half)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
  1. Mix all of the ingredients in a bowl.
  2. If things get clumpy, just use a whisk to break them up.
  3. An easy way to make the rub nice and fine is to pass it through a flour sifter, or whizz it up in the blender. I like to run it through the blender to get it really finely ground, but you don't have to.
  4. You can store the rub in freezer bags, but remember that oxygen is your enemy here, so squeeze out all of the air that you can.
Recipe by WooPigFoodie at