Here is a recipe for a versatile, all-purpose dry rub that is delicious on chicken, pork or beef. It’s the main seasoning in my Slow Cooker Pulled Pork. I also use it on ribs–either in the oven or on the grill.
When you keep this spice mix on hand, it adds a complex combination of flavors to meats and sauces in a jiffy. It is all that’s needed to season my homemade barbecue sauce. Learn how in my post 3 Barbecue Spice Recipes–Sweet & Tangy, Spicy, and Smoky.
This dry rub mix makes a big enough batch that you can keep it on hand for jazzing up your meat at the last minute. It is super easy–just mix a bunch of spices together, and you’re done. This recipe combines spices with dark brown sugar. (The sugar adds flavor, and promotes browning.) It’s sweet, savory, and spicy all in one blend.
Here are the 14 spices and seasonings used in this recipe:
- seasoned salt
- garlic powder
- onion powder
- sweet paprika
- smoked paprika
- chili powder (mild, medium, or hot)
- celery salt
- black pepper
If you don’t have all 14 of these spices, don’t stress about it. An 11- or 12-spice blend will be good, too. Use the quantities of each ingredient as a guide to their importance in the mix. The seasoned salt and paprika are the largest quantities of any of the ingredients, so I don’t recommending eliminating those. But the small amount of cloves and mace could be eliminated without significantly effecting the taste of the blend.
- What is MACE? This is not the same mace that is in an aerosol can and used to defend yourself against muggers. That kind of mace definitely has no place in a dry rub recipe! The spice form of mace is made from the dried fleshy covering of the nutmeg seed. It is a sweet spice that is compatible with spices like cinnamon, ginger, cloves, allspice, and nutmeg. You’ll also find mace in my pumpkin pie spice mix recipe.
It’s easy to customize this mix to please your palate.
- For a spicier blend, use hot chili powder (rather than mild) and more cayenne, cumin, or black pepper.
- For a sweeter blend, increase the allspice, cloves, mace, or brown sugar.
- For a smokier blend, omit the sweet paprika and substitute all smoked paprika.
Makes a great gift! This spice mix is easy to make and have on hand for gift giving. It’s long shelf life makes it particularly convenient. I’ve made labels you can attach to gift jars; you’ll find them further down in this post.
Step-by-step photos for making
14-Spice Dry Rub Mix:
Skip the photos – Go straight to the recipe
Step 1. Assemble the ingredients: See the spices listed above. Plus you need dark brown sugar. You can use light brown sugar, but the dark version has a richer flavor.
Step 2. Spread out the brown sugar on a baking sheet and let it dry for 1-2 hours. This will prevent the mix from clumping. I line my pan with parchment paper to prevent sticking and make it easy to transfer the sugar to the mixing bowl. Or, you can use a silpat mat, if you have one.
view on Amazon:
- pre-cut parchment paper
- baking sheet set with lids (I have two sets of these baking sheets; they get daily use. I used the large one for drying the brown sugar; the lids that come with the set are convenient for storage and stacking.)
- Silpat non-stick mat
Step 3. Combine all ingredients in a food processor for a quick and thorough way to make this mix. (Or, you can sift everything into a bowl and whisk until well combined.)
view on Amazon: 14-cup food processor –rated #1 by Cooks Illustrated Test Kitchen.
Step 4. Pulse until well mixed.
Step 5. Store in an airtight jar or container.
To use this dry rub mix, sprinkle it on all sides of the meat (chicken, beef, or pork). If you have time, wrap or cover the meat and refrigerate it for 1 hour (or as long as 12 hours) before cooking. The fridge time will enhance the flavor, but it’s also good if you cook the meat right away. Cook the meat on the grill, in the oven or slow cooker, or fried in a pan, according to your preference.
For a saucier coating on your meat, brush it with barbecue sauce during the last 5-10 minutes of cooking time.
View 3 Barbecue Sauce Recipes –Sweet & Tangy, Spicy, or Smoky
This mix makes a great gift!
Download printable gift tags
Print a sheet of these tags for adding the finishing touch to gift jars. It includes easy instructions for using this mix. I use mason jars for mine.
view on Amazon: 1/2-pint mason jars
To use the tags:
- Print these on card stock, cut them out with scissors, punch a hole in the corner, and hang them from a ribbon or string.
- Print them on sticker paper and stick them to your gift. Or, stick them on with tape.
view on Amazon: sticker paper sheets for printer
(economically priced at 75% less than most stores)
If you don’t have a printer or specialty papers, you can have a store with printing services download and print them for you.
To download and print a full sheet of tags,
simply click on the image below.
You can read my tips for making a big batch of this mix for giving multiple gifts in my post: No-Cook Dry Mixes Make Easy Gifts From Your Kitchen
Make it a Yummy day!
The14-spice dry rub mix is used in these 2 recipes:
Slow Cooker Pulled Pork–Low Fat, Easy, & Delicious
3 Barbecue Sauces–Sweet & Tangy, Spicy, and Smoky
14-Spice Dry Rub Mix
Servings: Makes 1-3/4 cups
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup seasoned salt (reduce to 1/8 cup for low-sodium version)
- 1/4 cup paprika (sweet Hungarian)
- 1/4 cup smoked paprika (Spanish)
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- 1 tablespoon celery salt
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 2 tablespoons black pepper
- 1 tablespoon rubbed dried sage
- 1 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 1/4 teaspoon ground mace
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
Spread brown sugar out on a baking sheet for 1-2 hours so it can dry out and avoid clumping. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until well mixed. Or, sift the ingredients into a bowl and whisk them until mixed. Store in airtight container.
TO USE: Sprinkle dry rub mix on all sides of the meat (chicken, beef, or pork) and rub it in. If you have time, wrap or cover the meat and refrigerate it for 1 hour (or as long as 12 hours) before cooking. The fridge time will enhance the flavor, but it’s also good if you cook the meat right away. Grill, pan fry, or bake the meat according to your preference. Also good for seasoning meat in slow cooker.
–For a spicier blend, use hot chili powder (rather than mild) and more cayenne, cumin, black pepper.
–For a sweeter blend, increase the allspice, cloves, mace, and brown sugar.
–For a smokier blend, omit the sweet paprika and substitute all smoked paprika.