Memphis-Inspired Barbecue Dry Rub

Barbecue season is upon us, so prepare to fire up your grills and smokers! And prepare for the season by mixing up a batch of homemade Barbecue Dry Rub. This Memphis-inspired rub is perfect for pork, beef and chicken or anything else you want to barbecue. A blend of SIXTEEN different herbs and spices, this Barbecue Dry Rub highlights a spicy kick, a bit of sweetness and a ton of balance for outstanding flavor this barbecue season!

A jar of spice sitting on a blue buffalo check napkin spills onto a marble countertop

This recipe came into existence because I ran out of my favorite Memphis-style dry rub when I hosted Barbecue Week two summers ago.

Needless to say, it was a majorly unfortunate occurrence.

My sister was coming into town that September, and I was excited. This was her first time to stay with us in Baton Rouge, and she and I were planning to drive out to Colorado the following week with all her belongings in her car. (That’s another story all together, but it’s a part of the reason why she came to Louisiana in the first place.)

In celebration of Leigh coming to town, we whipped up some of my hometown favorites, including ribs, pulled pork, slaw and sauce… but I’d run out of the seasoning to pull all the meats together and make them taste good.

Overhead of a BBQ dry rub blend inside a glass jar on top of a blue and white checked napkin

What’s a girl to do, living in a city nowhere near Memphis with no hope of finding her favorite dry rub?

She makes it herself.

… It took a LOT of tinkering, and at one point, I was fairly positive Leigh and I were going to clear out our entire spice cabinet, but we came up with this blend of spices to make a delicious and finger-licking good rub to go on all the barbecue that weekend.

Overhead of an overturned glass jar holding a spice blend and the spice spilling out onto a marble counter

Barbecue Dry Rub Essentials

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Get the look!

You ready to make some of this goodness for yourself this summer?

Here’s how Leigh and I pulled together this Barbecue Dry Rub! It’s easier to make at home than you think!

A jar of spice sitting on a blue buffalo check napkin spills onto a marble countertop
Yield: 32 servings

Barbecue Dry Rub

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

Barbecue season is upon us, so prepare to fire up your grills and smokers! And prepare for the season by mixing up a batch of homemade Barbecue Dry Rub. This Memphis-inspired rub is perfect for pork, beef and chicken or anything else you want to barbecue. A blend of SIXTEEN different herbs and spices, this Barbecue Dry Rub highlights a spicy kick, a bit of sweetness and a ton of balance for outstanding flavor this barbecue season!

Ingredients

  • 4 ½ tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1 ½ tablespoons cumin
  • 1 ½ tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon allspice
  • 3 ¾ teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 ¾ teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 ¾ teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 ¾ teaspoons celery seed
  • 1 ½ teaspoons marjoram
  • 1 ½ teaspoons thyme
  • 1 ½ teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons oregano
  • 1 ½ teaspoons coriander
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • ¾ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, measure out all the ingredients.
  2. Whisk the ingredients together.
  3. Once incorporated, pour into a mason jar, and store in a cool, dark place.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

32

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 12Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 99mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 0gSugar: 2gProtein: 0g

Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

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The photos and recipe for this Barbecue Dry Rub was originally published on June 3, 2013. The photographs, along with the text of this blog post and the recipe, were updated on May 30, 2017.

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14 Comments

  1. We don’t grill that much–but this rub is making me rethink that! Of course, we’d probably end up using a rub like this on veg kabobs or ears of corn instead of large hunks of meat, but it would still clearly be delicious. 🙂

    1. Hey, I bet this would be AWESOME on veggie kabobs or ears of corn. I haven’t used it for either, but it would be tasty, no doubt. If you do it, please let me know how it turns out!

    1. I haven’t used it on grilled veggies, but I now want to try it on zucchini and other veg! If you give it a shot, let me know what you think!

  2. That is ONE LONG LIST! But I can only imagine how marvelously smoky and delicious it would make a slab of grilled meat.

    1. Ha, it really is a ridiculously long ingredient list, huh? At one point, I really felt like I was using ALL the spices in my spice cabinet! But it is pretty delicious and smoky and perfect on any kind of grilled meat. I definitely recommend giving it a shot. Be forewarned, though: It makes a LOT.

  3. Yum! Looks like a good one! In the summertime my husband and I like to do something we call “Rib-Offs”, except it’s just the two of us. We get really intense about making the best dry rub. The silly part is, sometimes we lose track of whose ribs were whose. Luckily, they are more likely than not both delicious so we all WIN. 🙂

    1. Hi Celia! We’ve used this rub on chicken, pork and beef, too, and it’s been delicious on each one of them. Whichever protein you’d like to add some BBQ flavor to, this should work just fine!

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