Bring the taste of classic Memphis BBQ to your grill with this wonderful dry rub from Marlowe Restaurant in Memphis (on Elvis Presley Boulevard, of course). A spice rub that is full of flavor without much sugar, just great flavor. Use it with any meat that needs a rub.
The Recipe Story
This recipe is from the famous Marlowe Restaurant in Memphis (on Elvis Presley Boulevard, of course). If you watch a lot of Food Network, you have seen them. It is the mandatory stop in Memphis for ribs.
The recipes were given to Guy Fieri of Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives by the restaurant. But the original recipe (apparently already cut down) produced 11 1/2 cups of rub plus you need to put together Marlowe's Black Magic Seasoning, and that recipe is 12 more cups of spices.
Oh yeah, it is a strong 5.
Even though the original recipe was "cut down", I would say it was not really "Cooking For Two" friendly nor home cooking friendly as originally published. So I cut it down to a more reasonable size.
The ratio I used was 1 tablespoon for each cup of recommended seasoning. A 1:16 reduction was making about 3/4 cup of rub, which is about what I use on most recipes. It is now home friendly.
This will keep fresh in tightly closed containers for up to 6 months. You can go longer, but most of the flavor is lost after the bottle is opened, and by 9 to 12 months, it should be tossed.
It is better to be away from light and cooler but not the refrigerator where moisture could condense on the container during use and then damage the spices later. A full container is good, and a vacuum-sealed would be great.
Black Magic Seasoning
One of the components of this dry rub is Marlowe's Black Magic Seasoning. The restaurant kindly provided that recipe at the same time, but again in a huge size. I have cut that recipe down also in another post.
Do I have to use black magic? No. Although Black Magic Seasoning is full favor seasoning that has many uses, you will still have a great rub without it. The seasoning shares several spices with this rub and does add a touch of other flavors, but it is not mandatory. I can tell the difference a tiny bit, and I think most people won't be able to tell.
Having said that, I usually do the black magic, so I have it for other grilled meats.
Dry rubs and the sauce you use should complement each other. I suggest my Memphis sauce listed below or another sweeter sauce like a Kansas City or St. Louis sauce. Not a Carolina vinegar-based sauce.
This is generally a rub for ribs, but you can use it anywhere that a dry rub is needed.
There is not much sugar in this rub, so don't pack it on as much as the higher sugar-based rubs.
There is also a large amount of salt between the seasoning salt and regular salt in the recipe. I normally skip about half the normal salt and use coarse salt that cuts it even more.
Marlowe's of Memphis BBQ Dry Rub
- 3 tablespoons paprika
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon seasoned salt - Lowery's
- ½ tablespoon chili powder
- ½ tablespoon black pepper
- ½ tablespoon Black Magic spice mix
- Mix well.
- Store in an airtight container.
- Dry rubs and the sauce you use should complement each other. I suggest my Memphis sauce or another sweeter sauce like a Kansas City or St. Louis sauce. Not a Carolina vinegar-based sauce.
- This is generally a rub for ribs, but you can use it anywhere that a dry rub is needed.
- There is very little sugar in this rub, so don't pack it on as much as the high sugar rubs.
- There is also a large amount of salt between the seasoning salt and regular salt in the recipe. I normally skip about half the normal salt, and use coarse salt that cuts it even more.
- This will keep fresh in tightly closed containers up to 6 months.
- It is better to be away from light and cooler but not the refrigerator.
Publisher's Note: Originally published June 26, 2010, and re-edited with expanded discussion and additional photos.