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Spice Advice: Carolina Pork Rub

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The Carolina Pork Rub is our take on the classic Carolina grilling flavours: hot, full-flavored, and smokey. This BBQ spice rub is the perfect combo of spices, seasonings, and herbs that can be spread over meat, poultry, and even veggies before grilling, roasting, or slow-cooking.

So, what is a rub anyway? And what is the best way to use it? Rubs are often used in grilling and smoking because the seasoning penetrates the meat during the cooking process. Rubs also add flavor and texture to any kind of meat it’s added to. It is recommended that you work a generous amount into the meat up to 24 hours before cooking; cover and refrigerate the meat until ready to use. Apply a second coat just before grilling or smoking.

There are two different types of rubs. Dry rubs and wet rubs. Dry Rubs usually consist of sugar, salt, pepper, spices, herbs, and a dash of heat. The sugar in a dry rub helps create a caramelized crust on the outside of meat when grilled or cooked at high heat. It’s great for any grilled/smoked meat you’re planning on serving up and can eve be applied up to 24 hours in advance.

Wet Rubs have almost the same ingredients as dry rubs but with the addition of small amounts of liquid such as oil, vinegar, or alcohol to create a paste. Just to be clear, this is NOT the same as a super liquid-y marinade which uses acid as the tenderizing agent, while rubs rely on salt and the texture of spices to do the work. Instead, wet rubs are more like a thick paste which helps the rub adhere to the meat. This method is best used on meats that are going to be cooked low and slow over a long period of time because the liquid creates a buffer so that the sugar doesn't caramelize and burn as quickly.

Looking to bring a little Carolina flavour to your next grilling feast? Check out our Sweet & Smoky Carolina Pork Ribs here.

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