Spice Rubs

Written by Stephanie Dula
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Spice rubs have enjoyed recent popularity as the preferred method to pre-season meats before cooking or grilling. A spice rub is a blend of herbs and spices which can be massaged into meat to add flavor and seal in natural juices. Contemporary chefs offer some good advice for creating your own rub recipes at home or for purchasing some good spice rubs from reputable spice sources.

While marinading has long been the meat-seasoning standard, "dry rubs" have several advantages over "wet rubs." The most obvious is that they don't contain the fat and calories of traditional oil-based marinades. Grill-enthusiasts also prefer them because of their ability to stick to the meat when cooked on a grill or smoker.

When cooking with spice rubs, make sure to coat the meat as evenly as possible, working the spices into the meat. You want the spices to bring out the flavor of the meat and not mask or overpower it. Experiment with how much to use and how long to marinate them before cooking to find the method that suits you, and your tastes, best.

Buying Spice Rubs

Look online when shopping around for dry rubs to try. The great thing about dry rubs is their versatility. You can try sprinkling them on right before grilling, or adding oil and marinating overnight. Since spice rubs are the culinary phenomenon of the moment, there are plenty of resources that can provide exciting ideas on how to get started cooking with them.


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