Tamarind and Honey Sticky Ribs

Tamarind and Honey Sticky Ribs | Food styling by Claire Stubbs | Prop styling by Laura Branson Image by: Jodi Pudge

The tartness of the tamarind tempers the sweetness of honey in these fall-off-the-bone ribs. Serve with a side of creamy potato salad—and make sure you have plenty of napkins on hand! 

  • Prep time 15 minutes
  • Total time 4 hours



Remove membrane from underside of ribs, if attached. Place each rack, meat side up, on large piece of heavy-duty foil. Stir together five-spice powder, salt and pepper; rub all over ribs. Cover each with another piece of foil; fold and seal edges to form packet. Bake on rimmed baking sheet in 275°F oven until tender, about 3 hours.

Meanwhile, in blender, purée together honey, barbecue sauce, 1/4 cup water, tamarind pulp and soy sauce. Add up to 1 tbsp more tamarind pulp, if you like.

Remove ribs from oven; drain fat from packets. Brush top of ribs with one-third of the sauce. Bake, uncovered, in 450°F oven until bubbly and browned, 10 to 15 minutes. Turn; brush with half of the remaining sauce. Bake for 10 minutes. Transfer ribs to cutting board; let rest for 5 minutes. Cut into smaller portions. In large bowl, toss together ribs, remaining sauce and chives (if using) until lightly coated. Serve warm.

Tip from the Test Kitchen: Tamarind pulp comes from the pod of a tamarind tree, native to Africa. Buy it in blocks in Asian or Indian grocery stores or specialty food shops. 

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Nutritional facts Per each of 6 servings: about

  • Fibre 1 g
  • Sodium 993 mg
  • Sugars 28 g
  • Protein 42 g
  • Calories 532
  • Total fat 27 g
  • Potassium 670 mg
  • Cholesterol 169 mg
  • Saturated fat 6 g
  • Total carbohydrate 30 g


  • Iron 23
  • Folate 5
  • Calcium 9
  • Vitamin A 1
  • Vitamin C 2
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Lunch & Dinner

Tamarind and Honey Sticky Ribs