Homemade McRib
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Every year around late Fall there is a buzz in the foodie community. A buzz that is undeniable and creates an amazing amount of word of mouth every year with just 4 simple words. The McRib is Back! McDonalds have announced that at the start of November 2023 the McRib will, indeed, be back again! Well, we’re here to share our Homemade McRib which beats the original!

I’m pretty certain that the McRib has had many ‘last tours’ where McDonalds have announced it will never return. Yet, sure enough every Fall it somehow always seems to return to the menu. What I’m not particularly sure about is exactly how popular it really is? It can’t be that popular otherwise surely McDonalds would put the McRib on the menu permanently. I think perhaps the marketing of the McRib is more of a thing than the actual McRib itself!

Anyway, however you slice it we have indeed tried a McRib from McDonalds and I must say it was terrible. So, we’ve decided to re-create a Homemade McRib however make it significantly tastier than what is being served up over the counter

Ingredients in a McRib Sandwich

Keeping true to the traditional McRib we’re using Pork Ribs, Pickles, Onions and BBQ Sauce. Where we are differing the recipe is in several ways:

  • The McRib uses ground pork ‘shaped’ into a rib-like form. We’ll be cooking with actual Pork Spareribs
  • We’ll be following a traditional Kansas Style BBQ Rib & Sauce recipe. So a sweet, tomato based sauce with a little kick of spice from Cayenne Pepper and Chili Powder
  • The McRib uses raw Onions however we’ll be giving them a pan fry to get them a little sweeter
  • The McRib can be bought over the counter in a matter of minutes. Our McRib takes over a day to prepare!

Homemade McRib Photo in recipe
We guarantee you’ll make yourself a phenomenal version of the McRib following this recipe!

How to make The Homemade McRib

There are no shortcuts when it comes to making your own Homemade McRib. It is a labor of love that requires an investment in time and effort. However, we guarantee that you will be rewarded substantially for your efforts. A Sandwich of superior quality and flavor to anything the fast food places can produce

The primary components of making a McRib at home come down to two main areas:

  1. Appropriately preparing and Seasoning your Ribs
  2. Slow cooking them to tender perfection

1. When making Ribs at home, it’s all about the seasoning to bring the flavor

Ribs pack so much flavor when prepared correctly, and they have an innate ability to take on an unbelievable amount of seasoning without it feeling like their flavor is overpowered. For our Homemade McRib recipe, we’re sticking to a very traditional preparation of Ribs

First it is critically important that the Ribs are appropriately trimmed before you apply any seasoning. Flip the Ribs over to expose their back and remove as much of the silver skin membrane as possible. The membrane is overwhelmingly tough and, if not removed, will result in an unpleasant texture for the Ribs. You want these Ribs to simply melt in your mouth, so while this is a time-consuming step, it is critical

Once the membrane has been removed it’s time to douse these wonderful Pork Spareribs with seasoning. For our McRib recipe we’re keeping things quite traditional, with a combination of Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Cayenne Pepper, Chili Powders, Brown Sugar, and Salt. Mix these beautiful ingredients together and liberally rub into the Ribs. Make sure you coat both sides too and if you’re running low on seasoning, make more. Overkill is not in the McRib’s vocabulary!

We then Leave the Ribs, uncovered in the refrigerator overnight to soak up all that beautiful marinade. You can even give the Ribs a 2-day marinade for extra flavor. However, the temptation of having ribs in the fridge not being cooked for 2 days is far too mighty for most of us to resist

2. Cooking the Ribs low and slow, it’s the only way

Our slow cooked Rib recipe requires a 4 hour cook time in the Oven at 300F. You want to cover the ribs for most of this cook time, as the steam that is formed inside the pan will help to cook the Ribs throughout, leaving them wonderful and tender

Before cooking, you want to ensure that the Ribs are at room temperature. So, remove them from the oven about 2 hours prior to cooking. The internal temperature of the Ribs will take quite a while to come up to room temperature, so we’d recommend getting them out of the refrigerator first thing in the morning!

Basting is critical for not only tenderness, but flavor

Basting the ribs throughout the cooking process is a key step to getting those Ribs wonderful and tender. It also helps add even more flavor to the dish. For our baste, we’re using a classic Kansas Style BBQ Sauce. The McRib sauce is quite sweet, and we’ve found the Kansas Style sauce is the closest style sauce to what the original tastes like

Baste the Ribs liberally and often while they are cooking. We recommend basting around every 30 minutes or so. Retain a bit more of that wonderful BBQ Sauce for the end as we assemble the sandwich. You’ll want to add some of the Sauce into the sandwich for extra flavor and decadence!

Assembling the McRib is very easy

After you’ve cooked up your Caramelized Onions (which we’ve outlined in the recipe below), assembling the McRib is quite straightforward. Slice the Pork meat off the Ribs and place a generous amount on the bottom of the bun. We like to add a little bit more BBQ Sauce on top of the ribs for extra decadence

Place a generous layer of Caramelized Onions onto the Ribs, and then finish with sliced Pickles and, you guessed it, even more BBQ Sauce! Top the bun off and then cut in half and it’s ready to eat. This is going to be a messy meal to eat too, so we highly recommend serving your Homemade McRib alongside plenty of napkins!

Recipe Details


4 – 6 people

Prep time

1 day

Cooking time

4 hours

Total time

1 day, 4 hours

The Homemade McRib Recipe


  • 1 full rack of Pork Spareribs (4 to 4 ½ lbs.)
  • 4 long Buns
  • 1 tbsp. Onion Powder
  • 1 tbsp. Garlic Powder (or finely chopped Garlic)
  • 1 tbsp. Black Pepper
  • 1 tbsp. Salt
  • 1 tbsp. Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 tbsp. Chili Powder
  • 2 tbsp. Brown Sugar
  • 2 cups Kansas Style BBQ Sauce (recipe here)
  • 1 medium White or Yellow Onion, sliced
  • 1 tsp. Unsalted Butter


  1. Begin by preparing the Spareribs by trimming any excess fat and removing the outer membrane from the back of the Ribs
  2. Combine the Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Salt, Cayenne Pepper, Chili Powder, and Brown Sugar in a small bowl and mix well
  3. Liberally rub the spice mix all over the Ribs. Get most of the mix on the meaty side however be sure to place some on the back side of the ribs too
  4. Place the seasoned ribs on a tray or cutting board and refrigerate overnight
  5. Remove the ribs before cooking and get them back to room temperature, approximately 2 hours. Place Ribs on a large baking tray, cover with foil then bake in the oven at 300 degrees for 2 hours
  6. Apply a generous coating of BBQ Sauce to the Ribs after the first 2 hours. Place foil back over the Ribs then continue to cook. Repeat this process every 30 minutes for a further 2 hours until the internal temperature of the ribs is around 180 degrees
  7. Remove the ribs from oven and let cool before slicing into individual ribs with a sharp knife. Pull apart / cut off all the meat from the bones and set aside

Homemade McRib Ribs Close up
Once cooked your Ribs will be rich, tender and delicious

Homemade McRib Instructions Continued

  1. While your Ribs are cooling, place the Onions in a medium frypan with a tsp of melted Butter over medium / high heat. Fry for 4-5 minutes until slightly golden. Set aside
  2. To assemble the McRib, cut your bun in half and on the bottom place a generous serving of the rib meat. Lather an even more generous coating of BBQ Sauce on top. Then place your Onions, Pickles then the top of the Bun
  3. Serve with a LOT of napkins as this is very messy eating!

We hope you’ve enjoyed this fun Homemade McRib recipe. Once you’ve cleaned up all of the BBQ Sauce from your face, we recommend you give these other fun recipes based on fast food dishes a try:

Happy Cooking!

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