Asian Spiced Spare ribs

Asian Spiced Spare ribs

These Asian spiced spare ribs will have you salivating. The smell of them roasting fills your home with the most divine aroma. And smells don’t lie, these are delicious.

asian spiced spare rib ingredients


I use two different techniques to insure delectable results every time. First I marinate the Asian spiced spare ribs in a fragrant paste, and then I roast them low and slow. The low temperature and long roasting time means perfectly tender ribs, and the spice paste imparts incredible flavor.  I love marinades because they tenderize the meat, inject big flavor, and simplify dinner time. Marinate the ribs the day before, and a few hours before you want to have dinner just pop them in the oven!


Make the Spice Paste

First I start with whole coriander seeds. Yes, crushing them is an extra step, but nothing compares to the flavor and aroma of freshly ground coriander seeds. The powdered stuff in a bottle just doesn’t come close. I begin by dry toasting the coriander in a skillet. This just takes a couple minutes; we don’t want them to burn. We just need to get them nice and toasty, which deepens their flavor. Then I crush them in my mortar or a spice grinder.

coriander for Asian spice paste



Next, I add the rest of the marinade ingredients, and I either use my mortar and pestle, or I puree them with an immersion blender. If using a mortar, add the ingredients one at a time to make it easier to get a smooth paste. The turmeric will turn the paste a golden yellow.

A whole cup of cilantro might seem like a lot, but it adds fresh herbal flavor. You can use the root and stems; I hate to waste anything!

Marinate the Asian Spiced Ribs

Once you have a smooth paste, it’s time to prep the ribs. I like to use St. Louis cut spare ribs, as they are trimmed so you have a nice even rack. I put the ribs in a storage container and massage the paste all over the ribs, to make sure that every bit of the meat is covered.  Then I seal the container with plastic wrap, and let them sit overnight in the fridge. And with that, all of the real hands on prep time is done!

marinating asian spice spare ribs



Take the spiced ribs out of the fridge an hour or so before you plan to cook them. Letting meat come to room temperature helps it cook more evenly. Preheat your oven to 300, and arrange the racks in a single layer and cover with aluminum foil.

asian spice paste


Roast the ribs for 3 and 1/2 hours, or until tender. For the last hour, take the foil off of the ribs so they can brown and caramelize. I prefer my ribs cooked just shy of falling off the bone; I like there to be a little chewy texture. If you want them even more tender, you can just bake a little longer. When done, the ribs will smell amazing and have a beautiful bronzed color:

asian spiced spare ribs

I know you’re going to love my Asian Spiced Spare ribs.  They are easy to make, tender, and delicious. If you make them, we want to know! Leave a comment, rate it, and tag us in your photos, @funkyasiankitchen. Show us the goods!

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Asian Spiced Spare Ribs

  • Author: Funky Asian Kitchen
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes (plus marinating time)
  • Cook Time: 3.5 hours
  • Total Time: 3.5 hours (plus marinating time)
  • Yield: serves 4
  • Category: Main
  • Cuisine: Fusion


Fragrant, slow baked spare ribs with delicious Asian flavor!



Spice Paste:

  • 1 Tablespoon whole coriander seeds
  • 2 teaspoons ground white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons salt
  • 2 Tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 12 large cloves garlic
  • ¼ cup neutral oil
  • 1 generous cup cilantro leaves and roots (or stems), washed very well to remove any soil, coarsely chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped ginger
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder

2 racks of spare ribs (St. Louis cut)



Make Spice Paste:

  1. Heat a small skillet over medium heat and add the coriander seeds. Toast the coriander seeds for 2-3 mins, moving them around the pan constantly, until fragrant. Put them in a spice grinder or mortar and pestle and grind finely.
  2. In a food processor or the mortar and pestle (I used an immersion blender), add the ground coriander, the white pepper, black pepper, salt, fish sauce, brown sugar, garlic, oil, turmeric powder, ginger, oyster sauce, and cilantro leaves/roots. Process to create a smooth paste, about 1 min. If using a mortar and pestle, add each ingredient one at a time to make it easier to get a smooth paste. 
  3. If you are using coriander roots which are fibrous and tough, first use the side of your kitchen knife to smash them up and then cut them into small pieces before adding to the mortar.
  4. Spread the paste evenly over the ribs giving them a little massage. Put the ribs in a flat sheet pan or a plastic container, cover them with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.

Roast the Ribs:

  1. Pull the ribs out 1 hour or two before you plan to cook them. Preheat the oven to 300. Take off the plastic wrap and arrange the ribs so they are in a single layer on a foil covered baking tray. Then cover the ribs tightly with aluminum foil. 
  2. Put the ribs in the oven in the middle rack and roast for 3-3 1/2 hours until the ribs are tender. Remove the foil after 2 ½ hours and then continue cooking uncovered for the remaining time. 
  3. When the ribs are done, you can use a fork to test between the ribs. The fork should slide in without too much resistance. I prefer ribs that do not fall apart because I find the texture nicer but if you like them fall apart soft, plan for a little extra time.
  4. Cut in between the bones to create individual ribs, stack them up on a platter, and serve immediately.

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